Cuppa-tea time tragedy struck about 0900 hours the other day.
I broke my cherished work coffee mug.
I’d had that cup for years.
A one in a million from the local $1 discount store. Or maybe one of a million.
‘Just call me Mr Personality’ emblazoned on the side.
Did it scream personality?
Beside the point, really.
It drank well, and that’s what mattered.
Solid in the hand. Good on the lip. Thick enough to insulate against heat, stains and the sting of workplace ja.
Dunked a lot of biscuits in that cup.
I can still see it breaking in slow motion.
Reaching into my locker for pencil case and notebook. The same routine repeated day in, day out over years.
Only difference this momentous morning, the elbow clipped Mr Personality ever so slightly and he fell floorwards.
So slow, so sure, so certain.
No bounce on impact, no crack, no simply just the handle coming off.
Rather total and utter particle explosion, with a “Phumpfffff” that will haunt me forever.
Like a hit from the grassy knoll.
Mr Personality’s memories, spread like ceramic filings deep in the not-so-plush acrylic tendrils of the office walkway.
An immediate OH&S issue.
Emotion had to be bottled as the incident was reported and dustpan and brush chased up.
In the absence of those there was a broom and a piece of A4 paper.
Hard to erase those memories – from the carpet I mean, with a broom and piece of A4. Eventually had to use sticky tape pressed to the ground.
Poor old Mr Personality, mopped up minus fanfare with a DIY fly strip to the satisfaction of the designated floor warden.
Thus ended a great coffee cup era.
Later that day, in the tradition of work munchies, I felt that familiar yearning for something sweet.
But there was no charity chocolate on the floor. And my wallet was absolutely skint ruling out a raid on the chip machine.
It could only mean one thing.
Road trip to an ATM to get cash.
With that came a certain resentment that I might have to pay an ATM fee.
So in savvy financial fashion I hit the supermarket, figuring the $3.50 paid for a four-pack of discount muffins would be better than paying an ATM fee. At least at the end of this transaction, I had the muffins.
I raced back with my bounty, drooling in anticipation of the cuppa that would attend this fix.
Only to recall with overwhelming finality – Mr Personality was no more.
And the prospect of shanghai-ing some other cup from the work kitchen cupboard just seemed too much of a bio-hazard.
So I ate that muffin dry, but somewher in my heart of hearts, a tear was shed for the cup that felleth over.