Editorial | Issue 01

Editorial | Issue 01

At my work Christmas Party, I found out that the previous summer a guy had been fired for ordering a $200 Wagyu steak on the company tab.

Wagyu cattle enjoy a standard of living far superior to that of the average Otago student. Massaged daily, plied with beer and sake, and fed only the very finest corn, these elite cows have expensive tastes Ė and the costs of enabling their extravagant lifestyle are inevitably passed on to the consumer.

Everyone else at the restaurant ordered classy yet more reasonably-priced dishes, like ricotta-stuffed zucchini flowers and sea bass cheeks at $40 per main. But one hubristic law intern was seeking a dining experience less ordinary. And so it was that he made the fateful decision to order the Wagyu steak.

His managing partner didnít say anything at the time, and the staff party continued well into the night. Unfortunately for the intern, the partner was distinctly unimpressed, and the young aspiring lawyer was the only intern not to get offered a grad job with the firm.

Although he is gone, the legend of the Wagyu Steak Guy, as he likes to be remembered, lives on in the elevators, break room, and Aucklandís many after-work YoPro hangouts.

I often wonder about that infamous steak. Did the thrill of the forbidden imbue the meat with unparalleled flavour? Would the intern have changed his order had he known that the steak, delicious though it undoubtedly was, would cost him his job? Or was it a calculated, rational decision to squeeze every cent out of his employer, made in full knowledge of the consequences that would follow?

As it turns out, the Wagyu Steak Guy got offered a job with a law firm seven storeys beneath in the same building the very next year. His decision to order the steak was entirely vindicated, and his boldness sets a shining example for others who may follow in his wake.

Critic in 2013 will be guided by the teachings of the Wagyu Steak Guy. When the time comes to decide between prudence and audacity, Critic will opt for the latter. From a smorgasbord of potential features, we will choose the exquisitely marbled meat of a passionate extended diatribe over rump steak-esque neutrality every time.

At times, we may be censured. Bridges may be burned, activist groups may be mocked, and crack may be smoked purely to provide an entertaining gonzo feature. We will be neither fair nor balanced, and we will not attempt to hold OUSA to account, because we donít care.

Choose Life. Choose Critic. Choose Wagyu.
This article first appeared in Issue 1, 2013.
Posted 9:40pm Sunday 24th February 2013 by Callum Fredric.