Chartwells, the primary food distributary and social hub for most students on our campus, is an established part of the Simon’s Rock experience. Many students dine at this locale twice, even thrice a day, savoring the delicacies it offers, spending time chatting and unwinding in a peaceful common area. However, for something so integral to life at Simon’s Rock, what do we really know about Chartwells?
Allow us to start from the beginning: A more accurate title would be “Chartwell’s”. Chartwells is a name that seems to imply ownership of the company by an individual known only to us as “Chartwell,” having been compressed into a slicker company name over time. The question arises: Do we even know the person behind our daily sustenance?
For those of you who don’t know, the company itself is owned by a British Fortune Global 500 foodservice corporation entitled Compass Group Plc, whose CEO is a man by the name of Dominic Blakemore. In fact, Compass Group Plc is the largest contract foodservice company on the globe, providing cuisine to thousands of people in dozens of countries through its numerous subsidiaries. Chartwells is just one of these subsidiaries, specializing in meals for those in school or college. Arguably, Blakemore is ultimately the head behind our daily meals. Yet, what kind of name is Chartwells for a foodservice company with no relation to an individual of some sort? “Chartwells” has no ring to it, and no distinct feeling is invoked from it. Chartwells is not a fitting foodservice name, so it logically has to have some correlation to a name.
Throughout my searching, I was unable to find any record of any individual named Chartwell who was related to Chartwells or Compass Group Plc whatsoever. Law firms, regions, and other such things were found to be dubbed Chartwell, but nothing in relation to Compass Group Plc. Throughout the ocean that is the internet, a simple origin story for a prevalent subsidiary of an enormous corporation could not be found, missing without a trace? It simply does not add up.
Let us attempt to tackle the findings from a different angle: the food itself. On rare occasions, it feels gourmet, and on some days it barely functions as sustenance and nothing more. After eating Chartwells food consistently for an extended period of time, or likewise not eating it for an extended period of time, one may notice tangible yet vague effects such as headaches, nausea, reduced appetite, melancholy, and even changes in taste. These may become even more pronounced with continual consumption. While the old saying of “you are what you eat” still applies, there is a direct relation to one’s mental and in turn physical state, caused by the food. What causes this is unknown. One’s brain can naturally rewire itself after prolonged ingestion of a certain type of food, but for it to occur so quickly seems strange.
A missing record behind a strange choice of name that, via deduction and a hunch, has to or had to have been an individual of some sort, strange effects as a result of eating Chartwells food, and a multi-billion-dollar corporation heading all of it. Honestly, we don’t know anything about who rightfully is behind Chartwell, the sculptor of our nutrition.
While it may sound crazy, the pieces simply do not add up, like a tower without its base. With all likelihood, however, I am simply seeing something where nothing is. Nevertheless, it felt right to share these oddities with others. Perhaps you, the reader, can attempt to decipher this conundrum, if there even is one at all.
Angus Finn MacLeod
Angus is the Weekly Cad Director of Opinions and Humor.