Food & Nutrition

Comment | This Rubbish Airport Sandwich Sums Up What It Means To Be British In 2017

Don't try and fight it. We are this sandwich.

“Mmmmmmmm. This sandwich looks good,” said literally no one ever (Photo: Jack Clayton).

I’ve seen some things in my life. Things that made me happy. Things that made me sad. Things I had no opinion on whatsoever, and things that were so unbelievably bleak that I’m fairly certain the image of them will haunt me till the day I die.

I’m at Venice’s Marco Polo Airport staring at a “Brunch English Sandwich”, with Union Jack emblazoned on the packaging, and am convinced this is one horror show I won’t ever be able to forget. It will follow me to my grave and beyond. If purgatory is a place, I know it’s just an empty room with no windows…no doors…and only this sandwich for company.

“There’s no joy here. No love.”

Am I overreacting? It’s just a sandwich after all. Well, yes, on its most basic and literal level this “Brunch English Sandwich” is just a sandwich. But then, this isn’t just about the sandwich is it? It’s about so much more than just a sandwich. It’s about what the sandwich represents; about what the sandwich says about Britain in 2017.

Look at this sandwich. Look at what this sandwich says about our nation. Go on. Look at it. Look at the sandwich. Look at it for a full minute, without looking away. Look at it. Look at the sandwich. Look deep into the centre of this sandwich. No. Don’t look at me. Look at the sandwich. Look at the sandwich. Look at the absolute shambles that is this sandwich. 

This sandwich is Britain. We are this sandwich (Photo: Jack Clayton).

Please note that this sandwich, and its fellow “Brunch English” sandwiches, are on show at an airport that had almost 10 million people travel through it last year. This sandwich is our country’s spokesperson on the doorstep of Venice. A pre-packaged sandwich that screams “We’re Britain, and we really are a bit rubbish” now speaks for us at the international gateway for one of the world’s most beautiful, iconic, and popular cities

See how the two bits of bread used in the sandwich appear to actively dislike being involved with the sandwich. There’s no joy here. No love. You get the impression that the bread wants out, and that it’s physically repulsed by the eggy-bacon chaos to such an extent that it will stop at nothing to be free of it.

The bread doesn’t want to be involved with the sandwich (Photo: Jack Clayton).

“Let me be rid of this nightmare, I beg of you,” says the sandwich bread.

“wrthwwtqwnENMEAdvXSARWFBEBEBE,” says the egg.

And another thing, why is an exclusively “English” sandwich decorated with a flag that represents the union between England, Scotland, and Northern Ireland? Are the sandwich manufacturers having a sly dig at the post-Brexit uncertainty surrounding the Irish border and another Scottish Independence Referendum? Have they given up on the United Kingdom as a collective entity already? I might be reading too much into this, but I’ve got a feeling this sandwich is some sort of critique on the destabilising effect of Article 50.

It’s generally just a complete pile of shit isn’t it? I mean, it’s literally got not one single redeeming feature. Not one aspect that makes you think “Yeah, go on. I’d quite like to put this sandwich inside my mouth.” I didn’t think something so ugly could exist this close to something as pretty as Venice, but I was wrong. The fact that literally all of England is being grouped together here, and tarnished by association to it makes it all the more upsetting. This is effectively a 52% Brexit sandwich being dressed up as the sandwich of the people.

Finally, is brunch even a flavour? I mean it encompasses so many things. Fruit, pancakes, toast, bacon, sausages, croissants, danish pastries, coffee, salmon, eggs, jam, honey, beans. Maybe a cheeky Buck’s Fizz if you’re feeling fancy. That’s the beauty of the breakfast and lunch collaboration.

To truly be considered a brunch flavour this would A) Have to contain all of the consumables listed above as standard, and B) Taste like a colostomy bag, as a result of said culinary orgy. Well, it couldn’t look any less appetising than it already does so why not?

Or, maybe it’s just a sandwich and I’ve been in the airport too long.

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