Monday, January 7, 2019

A poem in Nixes Mate Review, an ode to University of Delaware food service.

         First read the poem HERE.

and below: The Story Behind the Poem
Russell Dining Hall-open until 2 PM for lunch or upon waking 

          When I attended the University of Delaware, I have to admit, the food was pretty good, plus you could have all the milk you could drink. They, at food services, used to trick us; it was always good-good (choice of london broil or shrimp newburg) or bad-bad (fried fish or cheesy spinach squares). This way there wouldn't be a run on the one good choice, leaving only the bad choice for the late-comer. Lucky for me---I loved cheesy spinach squares, simply adored them, but there was a lot of groaning and complaining on that particular night.

Cheesy Spinach Square
          There was also a lot of dining hall high-jinks we were involved in. First of all, who said there is no free lunch. We pulled it off all the time.  To enter a dining hall, you had to show your meal plan card to the person sitting at a small desk at the entrance. We found if we surrounded the desk with legit paying students, your friend without a plan, and shit-house broke,  could sweep on in, behind the screen. (see diagram below---you and your friends are numbers 66, 70, and 15. The nonpaying guest is number 45. Where CB is, and for simplicity, let's call it Cheese Burger,  is where the food line was located.

          The Student Center Dining Hall, my favorite hang, was decorated with large black-and-white foam core posters of Hollywood Stars of yesteryear on the wall. You know, Frank Sinatra, Lucille Ball, Errol Flynn, Dean Martin, Bob Hope and of course, Rin-Tin-Tin.
          Yeah, the amazing dog hero. In his poster, Rin-Tin-Tin's  photo had his mouth hanging wide open, and we found if we launched butter pats toward the target, if you were lucky, they would stick to the poster. It was kind of like darts---and we would keep score for the pats in or closest to Rin-Tin-Tin's mouth.

This may be the actual image used in the poster

Stock photo of basic salt-shaker
          Other ways we would keep ourselves amused was to deliver coffee to all our friends, which evolved to asking strangers, on our way up, if they too, would like a cup. The hot coffee would be stacked--cup, saucer, cup, saucer etc. and we got very competitive about the number of cups we could deliver.  Joe Kostecke stacked and delivered twenty-two cups at one time, which was, and is probably the world record. Even more outstanding was he had to dodge balled-up napkins that people were throwing at him. The next day, he dropped twenty-three and we were forced to stop by the authorities.
          Less dangerous pranks involved salt-shakers. If you dumped out the salt and filled the unit with milk, well, milk would pour out, right on someone's fried fish. Also, if you made a little pouch from a napkin, beneath the shaker top, and filled it with hidden pepper---then, surprise, pepper would come out instead.
          Another less dangerous prank involved always buying helium balloons (sold conveniently at  the Student Center) on fried chicken night. Then we would tie pieces of chicken to the balloon's strings and float them around the dining hall. The air-vents above the diners would sometimes force the balloon/chicken to dive bomb an unsuspecting student.
          Perhaps we were a bit of a menace, and the more serious students would be annoyed by us, but the bottom line was that we were very typically immature students having fun,  and  perhaps we were on something, but to me, it was all damn hilarious.


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