About Me

My photo
What I am: Complicated. A mom. A wife. A thinker. A seeker. A 'musician'. One of the volunteer executive directors of a niche music festival. An administrative business owner who set up shop in a senior's condo. Oh the stories!

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

The Dreaded Lunchbox

Ah, the end of June is here.  If there is one thing I am even more excited about than the approaching summer holidays it is this...  No. more. lunches.  For two whole months!  Can you believe it?  It's the most wonderful time of the year.

School lunches are the bane of my existence.  “Oh Tracy,” you say. "There are certainly worse things such as global warming, civil unrest, The Real Housewives of Anywhere..."  I have but one thing to say to you...I hate lunch.

Even back in my own school days, I hated lunch.  Face it, food in a bag which has festered in a locker for 3 hours is something only the dog can get excited about. Really great and different lunches weren't invented when I went to school.  On top of this, my mom was a bit of a health food nut, so I would be eating yet another tuna on brown, gazing longingly at my classmates' lunch, wondering why I couldn't dine on cheezies, twizzlers or cupcakes.  Frankly, the only thing I looked forward to was when my mom didn't have time to bake bread and we got to have the ultimate...bread from the store!  It was referred to by the most hilarious made up name: boughten bread.  Do you remember boughten bread??  It was such a treat!  I would even eat one of those shiny, quivering squares of ham if it was between two pieces of McGavin's white bread!

On most occasions though, I would open the fridge and stare into it, hoping the lunch ingredients would assemble themselves before my disinterested eyes.  When they did not, I would shout, "THERE'S NOTHING FOR LUNCH TOMORROW!"  It was then that I would get "The Speech."  The Speech consisted of the history of what my parents had for their school lunches.

 "What do you mean there's nothing for lunch? You don't know how lucky you are! Do you know what we had for our school lunches??" 
(I did know, but it was Too Late. I had opened Pandora's Lunchbox)
"Lard Sandwiches, that's what!  And there were none of these fancy Happy Days lunch kits...noooo. We carried our lunch to school in a Lard Pail.  If we were lucky, there was enough lard left over to make a dessert...that's right, lard with molasses on top.  We were happy with our lard and never complained!" 

(Okay, I made up the last part, but it's not really a stretch. )  Sometimes The Speech would end there, other times it would continue on to describe how hard it was to get to school, uphill both ways, carrying their horse on their backs.

I started out with much enthusiasm with my own kid’s lunches. I cut out sandwiches with heart-shaped cookie cutters, I skewered grapes and cheese onto toothpicks, I baked teeny tiny muffins. I even packed little notes that said, I love you! Have a super day!  I was so cute I annoyed myself.  It was all well and good until I packed the first banana of the school year.  “Mooooom  my whole lunch tastes like the smell of banana now!!”  And so it began.

After so many years, consistently trying to pull a rabbit out of a hat 5 days a week, 10 months a year becomes a chore.  After a while, the rabbit appears taxidermied, and is missing an ear or two…even with the ever-so-helpful magazines staring at me from the grocery store checkout: Healthy and Fun Lunches Kids Will Love!  Oh shut up, Martha. Have you met my kids?

My daughter has rejected every lunch food produced in North America.  See, she will LOVE something and eat nothing else for six weeks, then she will declare that she HATES that very thing and never look at it again.  This is usually after I have bought a truckload of it.  The boy is a bit easier, he eats anything but hotdogs and asparagus. If only I could get him to bring home his thermos before it becomes a scientific experiment.

Yes, Martha, walk a mile in my robe and slippers.  You’ll be in the closet with a half bottle of Chardonnay faster than you can say, “Lunchtime!”   Cheers to my holiday from lunch!!

Of course, it's due to the consumption of lard.  Listen to your parents, kids!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Tell me what you think!