Zoom Meeting Eating Etiquette

Updated: Jun 17, 2020

Question. How do you eat your lunch / snack(s) when on a lengthy Zoom call that spans a whole swathe of lunchtime or drags on longer than scheduled?? Or indeed at any time in the call that you might want a snack, ie anytime.

In the good old fashioned days of the office, when lots of people worked in one room, the most irritating food issue was generally smelly food.

I know that fish meals and spicy food were no no's and banned in many offices. But cup-a-soups / pasties / pot noodles / contraband tuna sandwiches / chippy friday's when you were dieting were always causes for consternation and loud eeeeerghhhss what IS that smell and twisting of heads and finger pointing to locate the culprit(s).

But Zoom is different. Eat a vindaloo if you want. Fry some fish. No-one will complain. Instead a whole new set of issues, relating to food sound and vision have cropped up....

So what do you do?

a) Obvious. Switch off your camera and eat away. Then realise you've missed most of what's been said and someone's just asked you for your opinion whilst your halfway through a pizza.

b) Mean to switch off your camera but forget and all the call attendees are treated to the insides of your fridge or you rustling about in cupboards (if you happen to be in the kitchen obvs)

c) Keep camera on, but eat tactically ie shove food in your mouth whilst someone is blathering on incessantly about something and everyone is hopefully looking at them. Or whilst someone's sharing an incomprehensible graph that needs great attention to understand - like at the 'Daily Briefing' - but offering you a window of opportunity to tuck in off radar.

d) Type lots of questions in Chat and whilst someone's dissecting and reading out those, fill your face

e) Keep a pile of small, low-crunch, low sound snacks next to you to suck on in case you forget to mute your mic. Nothing more irritating than listening to someone chomping through a bag of Monster Munch whilst Bill's banging on about furloughing. (Actually, thinking about it, Monster Munch are probably not too noisy due to their consistency and sogginess profile when licked - ordinary crisps, especially Walkers, have a louder crunch.)

Ha. That would be a good game. Guess the crisp / savoury snack by the sound they make. I digress..

f) Liquidise everything and put it in a none-see through water bottle so everyone thinks your healthy drinking loads of water

f) Eat beforehand. As if you'd remember to do that! 😂. I've sat forlornly staring at a piece of hot buttered toast, high in crunch factor that was just ready in time for a meeting to start. Even more tricky when you're actually hosting the meeting...

g) Don't eat. (Joke)

h) Sod food, just, fill your water bottle with gin or vodka and take it on the chin and prepare for another round of Mute Your Mic.

NB: Many of the above are liable to give you heartburn

NB 2. I don't really advocate trying any of these when you are the host of the meeting.

In that case I recommend having lots of breaks / giving out lots of exercises / turning off everyone's cameras so you have some peace and quiet to munch away.

Do feel free to share your Zoom eating tips whether as host or as guest...

#zoom #zoomeating #snacks #lunchtime #food.

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