A crispy fish sandwich (wth complimentary side of chips) and an iced tea cost nearly $14. Even though it is a company meeting (of sorts), lunch comes out of our own pocket. Mind you, the fish sandwich was the least expensive hot meal on the menu (next to the potato and bacon soup, but so much for trafe). I could have gotten a hamburger, but kind of difficult with that whole don't-eat-red-meat thing I have. I'll give them this much; the sandwich was rather large, and they kept my tea glass full. Still, that's about 5 bucks more than I planned to spend, and 14 bucks more than I wanted to spend.
(This was the same company that invited their employees to a Christmas dinner at a local restaurant, had the waiters tell the employees that they had to pay for their own drinks (only two or three people out of a dozen ordered wine), then when the tabs came, said "Oh, no, we're covering the drinks.")
For that lavish sum, I got to spend an hour or so with the VP of sales, or as I like to call him "the snake oil salesman." This guy is your typical fast-talking software salesman, caught in the middle of a midlife crisis (drives a Mustang GT convertible that he parks in the middle of nowhere so it won't get scratched, leers at anything in a skirt). During a 1-hour lunch, he got about 10 calls on his cell-phone, and of course he had to take every one. Between talking on the phone, holding ocurt over us, and wolfing down his salad, I don't think his mouth ever stopped moving.
When I caught him between calls, I tried to talk to him about a possible new area of business (contract or consulting work for the state government). I attended a presentation on this on Tuesday, and had some good information for him. Indiana has revamped their bidding system to make it much easier for companies to learn about RFP (request for proposals) and submit proposals, especially for small business and Indiana-based companies. I even had a handout from the government agency in charge of such things that would help get the ball rolling. He listened in relative silence while I passed on the information, gave a very noncommital "We'll check this out", and promptly changed the subject. I doubt he'll look at the handout (actually a postcard with some bullet points and a website), and even if he does, I highly doubt he'll pursue it with any sort of serious intent.
Fuck him. At least I had a good lunch (at my expense), but I don't think I'll be eating with them anytime soon. Next payday, I'll dash in, grab my check, and dash out.