You Are What You Eat…

…Unless Your Parents Are Idiots And Send You To School With the Most Disgusting and Unhealthy Lunch EVER!

Phew! That title was a bit long. But oh so accurate.

We went on a trip today. I love trips!!

Yes, I know they are physically and mentally exhausting. Yes, I know that the screaming on the bus reaches near deafening levels. Yes, I know that every one gets so excited that they can barely control themselves. And yes, I know there is never a man around yet there are an entire group of boys who need to pee which means standing outside the bathroom and yelling empty threats until they come out. It means complaining. And long lines. And other school groups who seem to be led by rude and obnoxious adults who encourage their class to push. Yes, yes, yes, I KNOW all that…

Wait a minute…I lost my train of thought. Let’s see. I like field trips…because….um, well…now that I think about it…hmmm.

I love field trips because it always reminds me of just how young and sweet my friends are. I love bringing them places and seeing them excited about learning.

See? And you thought I couldn’t come up with anything good.

We were having a fabulous time. Fabulous! And then it was time for lunch. We sit down and open up our lunches. This is always very exciting for the kids. Almost all of them get free-and-reduced school lunch (read “dogfood and prison grade meat”) and so the experience of eating a lunch that their parents lovingly put together/bought for them is a big freakin’ deal. I know. I don’t really get it either.

Anyway, my friends are starting to eat and I’m frantically running around twisting caps, opening bags and inserting straws (those Capri suns are no joke!). I then start to monitor what everyone has, preparing to enforce my Sandwich First law. I get to one of my friends and notice that she is already eating her chips.

“Honey, you need to eat your sandwich first.”

“I don’t have one.”

“Well, what do you have?”

She shows me a bag of Doritos, a bag of Cheesy Poofs and a big bottle of Blue Sugary Liquid masquerading as “juice.”


She tells me that is all her mother bought her. Her mom was in a hurry.

Hold on. I’ve been in a hurry too and grabbed a yogurt. Or a PB and J. My mom worked full time and raised me on her own, yet somehow I always managed to have a lunch that didn’t come exclusively from the Fats and Oils sections of the food pyramid.

And it’s not a money thing because those bags of chips are like $1.99 each…and if you have two bags, that’s about $4. At the corner store closest to my school you can get a turkey sandwich and a bottle of water for $4.50. I know because that is what I brought on the trip today.

I promptly gave my little friend half.

(Visited 27 times, 1 visits today)
  • “She shows me a bag of Doritos, a bag of Cheesy Poofs and a big bottle of Blue Sugary Liquid masquerading as ‘juice.'”

    This breaks my heart.

    And it pisses me off, something fierce.

    March 26, 2008 at 2:05 am
  • You are a good woman!!! That lil’ gal will love you 4-ever.

    March 26, 2008 at 2:18 am
  • Wow… Well at least the worst field trip lunch I have had a child bring was healthy, but still not enough food. It was an apple and a banana.

    Sometimes I wonder why certain people even have kids…

    March 26, 2008 at 3:25 am
  • As one of my colleagues says, you have to have a license to fish, why not to have a kid?

    Good question.

    And we wonder why millions of people are obese.

    March 26, 2008 at 11:58 am
  • I know how you feel. I teach teenagers and I have to keep granola bars and bagels in my class so that some of them get a breakfast or a lunch. It’s not that they ask, they just look so hungry when I’m eating that I have to share.

    March 26, 2008 at 3:43 pm
  • You are so sweet to share your sandwich!

    March 27, 2008 at 12:17 am
  • You’re just a big old mush Mimi, taking care of that poor kid.

    It’s pathetic what parents consider a healthy diet. No wonder the kids are fekked up.

    March 27, 2008 at 1:14 am
  • Ah yes, the tragedy of lunch. On our one field trip of the year, my kids brought some interesting food too…but that has to top it. I have a well-worn soapbox on which I perch myself almost on a daily basis at this point to bitch about the crap my kids eat every day. And so they are overweight. And Medicare this year for the first time is paying out more than it takes in. But have no fear, there is no connection…

    March 27, 2008 at 1:35 am
  • CBS

    I have you beat. One student of mine brought the following on a trip we had:

    One pizza lunchable, a doughnut, half a medium-sized bag of Lay’s sour cream and onion chips, soda, and a chocolate chip cookie.

    The kid ate every last bite. And he is FOUR.

    PS. I love your blog. I’ve been lurking.

    March 27, 2008 at 3:23 am
  • your “I know…” paragraph had me chuckling…cos I know! lol all so very true

    March 27, 2008 at 11:58 am
  • I can totally relate!! Have been there, done that too!! I have even given up my drink on a few trips, when the parent has told their child, “get your drink from the water fountain.”

    When I was in school, my mom NEVER sent me with a lunch like you described.

    March 27, 2008 at 3:51 pm
  • I had a 5 year old pull out leftover, cold McDonalds fries for snack. After I freaked out, he showed me what was for lunch — leftover, cold McDonalds cheeseburger and McNuggets. I forced him to buy lunch and sent a note home to Mom. It basically said, “don’t ever do that again.”

    March 27, 2008 at 10:16 pm
  • Oh, if only we could write a book and educate parents. It does make you feel sad…but at the same time, it explains so much.

    I had a student once pull out an entire bag of candy…she snuck it out from home though…I confiscated it!

    What ever happened to the math assessments? Did the lady rescore them after making so many mistakes on the one?

    March 28, 2008 at 1:49 am
  • The number one thing my students bring for lunch is “Flaming Hot Cheetoh’s.” Everyday.

    March 31, 2008 at 2:46 am
  • One more echo of the fact that modern American parents do less PARENTING and more MANAGING of their children.

    You’re very rad, Mims.

    March 31, 2008 at 4:50 am
  • I have to add that my “apple and banana lunch” student had another interesting “assortment” for lunch today. It was…a banana and a large carrot. Yes…that’s all…

    April 1, 2008 at 12:12 am
  • Lisa

    A few years ago I taught 2nd grade and I would have a student who brought in sardines packed in mustard oil for snack. The other kids were not excited about this, as they stunk, a lot! Even though they smelled really bad I couldn’t tell why the WHOLE room reaked of their stench, rather than just the trash can near her desk. Then…one day I noticed she would go to the back of the room and dump out as much oil as she could, and then bring the can to the front of the room and throw it away. A 7 year old was stinking up the classroom on purpose! Ohhh the thought process of that little girl! Needless to say, the day I saw her do that was the LAST day she brought sardines to class! (And what 7 year old EATS sardines?)

    April 2, 2008 at 12:42 am
  • If we are what we eat, then this is scary to think about:

    My cousin, a senior in high school, went with his mom to the mini-mart next to the high school the other day, and the clerk saw my cousin and said, “big bag of Doritos and a large Gatorade” as he leaned over to grab them. My aunt was not a happy camper to find out he had been spending his lunch allowance on junk.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:19 pm
  • Well…I figured out why my “banana and carrot” student only has that for lunch some days. It would seem that his nine year old sister is in charge of packing their lunches. Today, she “forgot” to pack them, and sent him with an empty lunch box. Yikes!

    April 3, 2008 at 3:00 am
  • Oh man I hear ya on the crap for lunch issue! I’m not a teacher, but I used to work as a summer day camp counselor and 98% of the kids came in with Lunchables, which are nothing better than a couple of cheese and crackers. Where is the nutrition there?!?!?!

    It doesn’t take more than a moment to make sure kids bodies and brains are being fueled the right way. I wish parents would get a clue!!!

    Also, the reason I was a camp counselor was that we went of field trips three times a week. I love them, too!!

    April 9, 2008 at 3:25 am
  • Oh, this breaks my heart. Poor little guy. Also? Those Capri sun things? Who thought those would be “easy” to open?!

    April 9, 2008 at 1:39 pm
  • Wow. It is amazing to me how things have changed in twenty years. I’m not saying everyone had a perfectly balanced meal when I was in elementary school, but two bags of chips and sugar water? That’s freaking lazy.

    April 10, 2008 at 6:39 pm
  • Anonymous

    I’ve got one.. the other day in the cafeteria a kid pulls out a can of Campbell’s Chicken noodle soup. She asked me to open it for her. She said “my mom says it will get me well”. Mom obviously neglected the fact that getting well might include a can of water, a stove, a pan, a bowl and a spoon. So, I sent her to the lunch line for the tastyness that is school lunch 🙂

    April 11, 2008 at 2:17 am
  • I wish you’d post again! I love your blog! 🙂

    Happy Saturday!

    April 12, 2008 at 9:19 pm
  • Lisa

    I also wish you would post again, I am new to your blog and LOVE it!

    April 14, 2008 at 7:27 pm
  • Anonymous

    Today I read about your Blog in an issue of Instructor Magazine and logged-on. I am so glad I did…you are now my laugh-out-loud fix. Thanks!

    April 16, 2008 at 2:34 pm
  • I just stumbled upon your blog and love it! As a 5th grade teacher, I feel your pain!

    April 17, 2008 at 12:51 am
  • you don’t know me but i stumbled across your blog recently and, since i work in an elemantary school, i feel like i can relate! but you have quit writing and i have quit laughing. help! write soomething!

    April 18, 2008 at 11:15 pm
  • i SERIOUSLY miss yr wit and great writing.. have you kinda/sorta quit blogging?

    I have been looking almost every day!

    Best, SL

    April 19, 2008 at 4:31 pm
  • Anonymous

    i agree with everyone else here that you need to blog again PLEASE!! i have tried reading other bloggers but they just don’t compare to you….you make me laugh SO hard!!!!

    April 20, 2008 at 4:11 am
  • hope everything is alright mimi! we’re thinking of and missing you!

    April 21, 2008 at 2:02 am
  • Mimi,

    Hope all is well. We miss you and hope to hear from you again soon!

    April 22, 2008 at 12:59 am
  • That’s the norm around here. For breakfast it’s chips and juice. Any kind of chips like something called Rapper’s Delight. I kid you not! The juice is a Hugs, which is colored sugar water. Parents think that if it says “juice” then it’s healthy. Also, for some reason our school sells candy bars. It frustrates me so much when I see kids with $2-3 every day, buying 4-5 candy bars EVERY SINGLE DAY and eating them before lunch! Don’t get me started on obese kids! ARGH!

    May 9, 2008 at 4:13 pm
  • April 2, 2009 at 1:38 pm

Post a Comment