Cafeteria Food Fight

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They came running in at lunch time, as usual. They lined up eagerly picking out what they wanted to eat that day, or should I say what they wanted to throw!

Last Wednesday, I experienced a food fight between middle school kids, only the kind you see in the movies. Yes, it was that bad.

When the little darlings came in for lunch, all 200 of them, it seemed like a normal day. They took their trays to their favorite tables and sat down. Everything seemed normal.

I looked up for a second, and saw what I thought to be a mini corn dog or a chicken nugget sail across the cafeteria. A couple of seconds later something else came from the opposite direction, then the mumble of laughter became a roar of screaming. I stood there and watched with horror and disbelief as all 200 students hurled their trays of food at one another. I saw pizza and fries sail across the room, still sitting in the boats I had served them in. Trays of chicken nuggets and pizza pockets with egg noodles covered in gravy sailed in mid air until splattering on the target.

It lasted only a few seconds, maybe a minute, but the end result was something I had only seen in the movies. Not one table had been missed. There was food and milk splattered all over the walls and the floor, making it dangerous for anyone to walk across it.

All available staff was called into the cafeteria to begin cleaning up the mess. High school students would be coming for lunch in only 20 minutes. Some of the students who were not fortunate enough to escape in time got to help clean up the mess.

Soon, the cafeteria was sparkling clean. Now, what should be done to the students? Everyone agreed that they should be punished in some way.

This is what we came up with. All middle school students lost privileges to being served Ice, condiments, such as ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, ranch dressing, salt, pepper. They also lost the privilege to eat from the salad bar and lost their precious French fries and snack bar.

They were served water; it was room temperature or had the choice of drinking milk. It of course was served cold.

Not to mention, last week was public school week. Not one parent was eating lunch with their child when the food fight happened.

On Thursday and Friday, there were parents eating with their children. Even though they were marched into the cafeteria like kindergardeners, and had assigned seating. The parents were upset with the teachers and cafeteria staff. They were insulted that some of their children had to clean up the mess, and didn’t think it was fair that they had to drink room temperature water. They also didn’t think it was fair that they had no condiments.

What I wanted to ask is, “What if they had a food fight at home, in your kitchen?” I’m sure it would have been different. Or maybe not, parents these days are so much different from when I was growing up or my kids were growing up. I would have sent my kid into the cafeteria with a rag and bucket and told her not to leave until it was clean!

What are parents thinking these days? They don’t want their children to be disciplined for anything they do wrong. This is what is wrong with kids today. We began our spring break this week. The kids thought if they did this before spring break, they would not get into trouble. Won’t they be surprised when they return next week? Yes, their punishment is going to continue for the entire first week from spring break!


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