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The Break Room Diet: 6 Condiments Unpaid Interns Can Eat to Survive

July 20, 2011

COFFEERUNheader5 Stealing from employers: Its actually pretty boring

“The Coffee Run” is a weekly satirical column. Any advice presented here will probably ruin your career, break up your marriage and suffocate your goldfish.

By Alex Braun

Feel like a slave to The Man at your unpaid internship? Think before you speak, because that comparison is totally ridiculous. Slaves didn’t have to buy their own lunch.

Here’s the good news: You won’t either, now that you possess this dietary guide to six common office-dwelling condiments that can theoretically stave off hunger at your unpaid internship.

Creamer Bucket

CoffeeMate French Vanilla Creamer (single-coffee serving)

25 calories
6% DV saturated fat

At 25 calories, you could actually fulfill the typical 2,000-calorie diet by sucking down 80 of these in the course of a day. Really the only drawback would be that you also would be consuming 480% of your Daily Value of saturated fat, which is enough to detonate a buffalo heart.

Equal packetEqual

O calories

According to the label, Equal packages offer a brutally unsatiating zero calories. In fact, the only indication that there might be real matter inside comes from the sugar content, which is listed as “Less than a gram.” By the way, the package size itself is one gram. That’s like if a donut package said “Less than 100% fat” or Gary Busey said “I am not entirely made of GHB.”

Basically, don’t waste your time.

Tea BagTea Bags

O calories (unless …)

Yet another product that doesn’t actually physically exist, according to the nutrition label. Every single ingredient is measured at zero grams.

However, that is probably based on the assumption that you won’t eat the contents of the bag itself – and today we are not constrained by such societal limitations. Although I can’t find any dietary information about tea bags, I was able to find this disturbingly long list of YouTube users who have done the deed – and it looks pretty filling. You Brits are insane.

Burlesons HoneyHoney (1 tbsp.)

60 calories
16 g sugar

If you can handle over 530 grams of sugar, you can live comfortably on honey for a day. You are also most certainly a giant insect from outer space or Winnie-the-Pooh. And you’ve got the beetus.

Ketchup packetKetchup Packets

20 calories
170 mg sodium

Amped with gnarly levels of sodium, ketchup packets are good for de-icing a sidewalk or mummification, but not very good for quashing hunger. For a somewhat healthier option, try …

Relish PacketRelish Packets

20 calories
95 mg sodium

I figure relish is closer to actual food than ketchup or mustard, because you can see the individual solid components of the pickle that was diced up to create it. This should be encouraging to some broke, starving interns.

I once survived on these when I had to skip breakfast to make a Mizzou football game, so I know that eating 10-12 of them is not deadly – just really strange and kind of disgusting. You also will want to brush your teeth like, really, really hard after the fact.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Brianna Wagenbrenner July 20, 2011 at 4:26 pm

Did you actually eat that much relish?


Alex July 20, 2011 at 4:32 pm

Maybe it was only 8-10, but it wasn”t my finest hour.


Sarah July 22, 2011 at 1:47 pm

If you take the creamer and fill it to about half a cup or so, and fill the rest with hot water (actually the ratio is variable to how sweet you want it), you got yourself a Vanilla Steamer! Unless you can sneak some coffee in there. I'm assuming if you have creamer at your work, there's coffee, too. It's like you can actually afford a Starbucks! WOW!


Alex July 22, 2011 at 2:05 pm

This is revolutionary


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