Cafeteria Bacteria

January 9, 2018

The Colburn School has a good cafeteria.

Weirdly, there have been two incidents in one week that I want to note about my visits there this week, because it’s 2015 and I can — on my blog– where who else cares, but me?

I was getting my food and this pretty young lady was grabbing utensils and drink and then crossing the floor to the salad bar to meet her friend.

The space isn’t large.  Maybe 5-7 steps?

In the process, she dropped a black plastic fork in the middle of the off-white floor.  It clattered.  She noted that it had fallen, but she swept across the space and joined her friend.  The fork lay there.

Moments later, someone almost slipped on this random black fork in the middle of the walking path.  I bent down, in spite of my hernia, and picked up the fork and waited for a minute behind the friend of this girl in order to return it to her, as in, “You dropped something.”

As I stood waiting to return the fork, I realized, the young lady knew perfectly well she had dropped something, she just decided it wasn’t worth the interruption of her life flow to pick up after herself.

Soon she and her friend disappeared to the checkout line.

I threw the fork back on the floor –in a performance art type of way.  It clattered lightly as it slid to the wall.  Then I had to walk over and pick it up, because it’s rude to drop a fork on the ground when no one else knows it’s performance art.

Shortly thereafter, I found myself standing with Matt in line a few people behind this young lady, with her stupid fork in my hand.

I couldn’t help myself.  I dropped it.

The clattering sound was familiar.  She turned her head.

I noted that she wasn’t deaf.

As she joined her friends in the dining room, obviously not in a rush to get to a lunch-time surgery appointment, I thought, I wonder if she was someone who grew up a definite idea of wait staff or body servants.

She had very nice hair.  Probably very talented, too.

That was incident no. 1.

* * *

A few days later– I don’t know why I’m spending so much time in this cafeteria — when incidents such are these are giving me indigestion to counter the tastiness of the food and  pleasantness of the environment. . .

I’m at the grill.  A young man is there with his parents. He has headphones around his neck and is highly impatient.  Maybe because he’s irritated that he’s going to have to pay for his parents dinner again.  Every time they visit him at the conservatory.


They’ve all ordered something with fries.

When the boy takes his tray, some fries fall from his tray onto the ground.

Mom and Dad freeze for a second, look at the fries on the floor, then both awkwardly bend down to pick up the fallen food –Dad first, then mom.  The boy hasn’t made a single muscle move to retrieve what has been jostled to the ground with his ungainly movements, although he turns his head and shoulders frequently to release contempt for his parents.

Mom takes the two fries in her hand that belong to the boy and tries to discreetly put them on his tray.  He shrugs her away, what are you doing? don’t put that on my tray, it’s been on the floor, he says.

Mom holds the fries in her hand.

Momentarily, she has her own tray.  She slides the fries onto her tray and waits for her food to be handed to her by the chef so she can have dinner with her husband and their satan spawn.  Later, I see them all sitting around a table at the far end of the dining commons, a family eating their ten thousandth meal together.

Very talented, no question.  But satan spawn all over the Colburn school.

I take that back.  Generalizations of this nature are of the type from which spring much unnecessary ill-will and negative stereotyping.

There are many incredibly talented and sensitive young artists in that cafeteria who give the environment its charm and good energy!

These two were the satanic spawn-like aberrations that I just happened to come across this week.

I’m sure it will never happen again!

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