Chosen watering hole: The Greencoat Boy, Victoria.
Ambience: Grimy but friendly – and mercifully air-conditioned – city boozer
Topics: Love among the sandwiches, oestrogen in the water and the Frisbee family
Drinks Drunk: 6 gin and tonics, 4 pints of Amstell, 3 pints of Heineken, 3 glasses of white wine
It’s one of the muggiest days of the year and as we are in danger of fainting into our pints we decide to abandon our first location. A quick call ahead confirms that the Greencoat Boy, or the GCB as the Modus team fondly call it, has air-con so we drag ourselves through heaving, sweaty Victoria to get there. Once we have cooled off we finally muster up enough energy to have a proper conversation and what an revealing one it turns out to be.
GCB isn’t the only inter-company phrase this lot use. They call themselves Modites and spend so much time together that inter-Modus relations are commonplace. “My husband used to work at Modus and now we have a Modus daughter together,” says Emma.
“There are other Modus babies and there are two more on the way,” adds Emily. “Oh and Dickie’s daughter was through the sandwich lady.”
Naturally, more details are requested immediately.
“One of our guys married the sandwich lady,” she explains. “We started to realise something was going on when he would spend ages choosing his sandwiches. They fell in love, got married and had a daughter.”
There are other Modus babies and there are two more on the way. Oh, and Dickie’s daughter was through the sandwich lady.
“Our company is the equivalent of Grazia magazine,” laughs Miriam.
Which brings us nicely on to the next subject – the oestrogen levels in London’s drinking water. “It’s one of the things our bodies can’t filter so us women are peeing out all these hormones and you boys are drinking a ton of oestrogen,” laughs Emily.
“You’re probably all on the pill without realising it,” adds Miriam as the boys look at each other, shocked. “Well, tap water in London is recycled through eight people,” says Brock, “so I can believe it. And I have been feeling more emotional recently.”
“This is why I keep my husband on the Evian,” says Emma.
As the sharer platter arrives everyone dives in and talk turns, childishly, to porn star names – the combination of your first pet’s name and your mother’s maiden name. Somewhat surprisingly, Miriam reveals hers to be Sparky Frisbee. “Really,” says Brock. “That’s weird because my great grandma’s surname was Frisbee, too. She was from Ireland too – Nelly Frisbee.”
We started to realise something was going on when he would spend ages choosing his sandwiches.
“Oh my God. We could be cousins,” cackles Miriam.
“Lucky you and I haven’t had any inter-Modus relations then.”
“I’ll ask my parents and you ask yours and we’ll see what we can find out,” adds Miriam, promising to keep Building updated.
By the time Tim and Toby arrive, a lot of ground has been covered and potential long-lost cousins reunited so they settle down for a quick drink and, good sports that they are, fill us in on their porn star names, Tess Loveless and Sandy Warren. Not bad - but not a patch on Sparky Frisbee.
Toby Benzecry chief executive
Emma Hudson client relations director
Emily Spink business development manager
Brock Clyne services co-ordinator
Gary Anderson project manager
Miriam Doyle project manager
Tim White divisional director
Emily Wright Building