I took a tentative bite. When my teeth bounced off the shrimp instead of biting through it, I placed it discreetly back onto my plate and covered it with a lettuce leaf. And so it goes every year at our Group party - our boss brings in a ton of extra large steamed shrimp, plus extra spicy cocktail sauce. Every year the shrimp are still partially frozen, water-logged, rubbery, and tasteless. Every year I try one, just in case it's miraculously edible. It never is.
Other than that, our food is usually pretty good. The holiday party is a pot luck affair, with several of us bringing home-made food, and a few people opting to buy goodies from the Lexington Market and beyond. Down one microwave this year, we planned on chow that was good at room temperature or chilled: two guys made different variations of mayo-less potato salad, one lady brought two huge vats of home-made Thai rice and noodle dishes, and I made several pounds of curried chicken salad. I usually prefer the home-cooked food, but this year my favorite dish was the "Bruce Lee" wings purchased at the Cross Street Market. They were perfectly cooked, crispy crunchy despite being a) cold; 2) coated in a vaguely-Asian sauce (think General Tso's, without the heat).
There are twenty of us in the group, and we eat like pigs. Even our resident vegan becomes omnivore for a a day. The result is that few items end up as leftovers - usually some green salad, some rotisserie chicken, a bit of 7-layer dip. And of course those dreaded nasty shrimp. Every year, the fridge is full of leftover shrimp. With any luck, the non-Group people who work on our floor will pilfer some.
Wonder if we could get the boss to spring for Bruce Lee wings next year instead?