With the huge stack of things to stress about in university life, choosing a place to eat with your friends poses as the cherry on top. Be it lunch breaks, cancelled classes or someone's birthday, deciding on restaurants has proven to be a neverending struggle that most of us face on a daily basis. Hence, the following is a list of stages that make up this gruesome process.
There's always an initiator, who naively brings up the idea to go somewhere to eat. Little do they know about the impending war that they just triggered, which would end in numerous friendships being broken with little room left for them to be salvaged. A sensible initiator never repeats their mistake and hence are initiators for only once in their lives.
Here, everyone brings out their respective suggestions to the table. Now if you're thinking it's an easy process deciding on a voting basis you've got it at wrong. Chances are the suggestions almost never overlap with one another and you are left with an obscure combination of restaurants which differ in dimensions varying in places, cuisine and every other factor imaginable.
There's always that one person in the group adamant on getting their suggestion picked, and soon their stubbornness reaches unsurmountable limits. Then there are the senti ones who get all sentimental if theirs don't get picked. The ones living relatively far vouch for places outside of the city's vicinity in remote places you're not even sure can be located on maps. All in all, conflicting opinions arise, marking the start of the earliest stages of battle.
Huge groups are literally the breeding ground for the formation of multiple subgroups, the identities of which become more prominent in situations like these. When people realise neither individual nor group priorities as a whole are realistically implementable, they resort to sticking by their subgroups. With conflict, motive and army in check, war preps conclude and the real arguments begin.
With everyone in battle stations, the verbal war instigates in full force. Pausing and examining the scene would make even people with the most peaceful of childhoods have flashbacks of trauma they never suffered. Listening closely would result in hearing the gurgling sound of blood boiling with rage coupled with shattering noise of friendships breaking.
The arguments end with the first surrender declaring how the place chosen doesn't matter to them and that they're willing to go anywhere everyone pleases. With that, the very first suggestion gets picked to everyone's utter frustration and off they all go with drained energies and new found hunger.
As tiring as this process might seem, it most often ends on a good note after reaching the chosen restaurant, because after all you get to spend some quality time with the people you adore and realise how the dreadful ordeal was somewhat worth it. After all, at the end of the day, it's not about the place rather the company you keep that matters.
Veronica Gomes is a socially awkward sophomore. Feel free to trigger awkward encounters by reaching out to her at firstname.lastname@example.org