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CollegeHumor's sketch about being a polite co-worker is spot-on.

Adam Campbell-Schmitt
Updated July 28, 2017

There's an unspoken and understood rule of law in the office: When someone brings cookies you can never be the person who takes the last one from the plate. We all know it to be true. And if you're the kind of person who does take the last cookie, congratulations, you're the target of everyone's side-eye for the rest of your life.

Okay, maybe those consequences aren't so dire, and maybe there is a loophole to this social conundrum—taking just half of the last cookie. It's a generous move. Sure, you're serving yourself (but that's what the cookie bringer wanted, right?) yet you're also making sure that another co-worker doesn't have to go without. It's heroic, really.

That concept of chivalrous cookie-splitting is perfectly encapsulated in a recent sketch by online comedy site CollegeHumor. Titled "You Can Never Take the Last Cookie," a group of office workers gathers around a break room table where only a single, solitary chocolate chip cookie is left. As more folks drop by to chat about the latest episode of "Ninja Butt Warriors" (fair warning: you're going to hear the word "butt" a lot in this video) the prospect of being the last person to take the last bit of cookie from the plate gets parsed to the extreme. After all, nobody wants to be seen as rude.

The video was written by Rekha Shankar and directed by Sam Geer, who clearly have been in this situation before. If you want to dabble in your own psychological experiments in your workplace, you can find some amazing cookie recipes to consider sharing with your colleagues here. And if you want to make sure you're current to whatever season it happens to be when you read this, we've even selected a special cookie recipe for every month of the year.