Tuesday, August 17, 2004

I remember college food...

Apparently not all college cafeteria food is abysmal anymore. AP reports today that in a new survey by the Princeton Review, Wheaton College--a Christian college, at that!--is number one in the nation when it comes to campus food.

The story quotes Wheaton business manager Steve Mead as saying that food is an important part of any residential campus. He says good food can keep students
from being discouraged.

Hmm...I'm going back in my mind to my caf food experiences at Baptist Bible College in Springfield, Missouri. Oh, it's all different now, of course...but back in the day (mid to late 70's), I don't think anyone was really worrying about whether the food situation was going to discourage us.

Some of the weekday meals were downright strange. There was the obligatory "mystery meat" that no one could ever really figure out, and the meals weighed down with "starches" (that's what we used to call carbs back then), that were guaranteed to pack on the proverbial freshman 15.

No fancy salad bars, pasta islands or soft-serve ice cream machines for us. No sir, we stood in line the traditional way and took what they gave us.

It wasn't all bad. On certain Fridays and Sundays, we actually got steak...and it was actually decent. The fried chicken dinners were pretty good, too. And although I rarely got up in time to taste for myself, I'm told the biscuits-n-gravy breakfasts were really delicious.

Anyway, most of us did head over to the caf when we were hungry, no matter what was on the menu. We weren't allowed to store food in our dorm rooms, and few of us could afford to eat out very often.

When I send my son Justin off to Cedarville University in a few days, I won't have to worry about him starving. I've eaten at the Cedarville cafteria many times, and the food is plentiful, diverse, and quite good.

Still, despite the salad bars and dessert stations and grill-your-own sandwich stops, Justin tells me he still misses my home cooking when he's away. Apparently, despite all the advances in college food services, nothing rivals Mom's own recipes, served up with love.

Awww.... :)

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