I was doing my lunchtime walk last week, and I ran into a sign I hadn’t seen before.
When I started my second year at WSU, I moved into an apartment. When it came to food, I knew how to make exactly 2 things. Cheese Burgers and Kraft Mac & Cheese. Oh, and Eggo waffles. This made grocery shopping easy. And cheap. But it didn’t provide the greatest variety in food. When I would combine the can of chili with the mac & cheese (CHILIMAC!) my roommate Scott would cringe. I guess those nights there were extra noises and smells in our room
Yes back then, we had to be resourceful to eat well.
Of course, the mainstay of GOOD food was pizza. To this day I still remember the number to dominoes, 332-8222. But, who could afford to buy pizza all the time? However, there was this magical thing back then. If they didn’t deliver within 30 minutes it was free! There were some people who would purposely give bad info to make the driver late. I can honestly say, i never did that.
However, once, at a friends, we ordered a pizza and sat on the deck waiting for it. We watched a Dominoes guy walk around for 15 minutes (an then waited 3 more to be sure) then flagged him down! He was mad, but all the info was correct. He just didn’t find the right building. PLUS, we were able to order again another night! Win win! There were other times he or she was simply late, and we considered ourselves the luckiest guys on campus when it happened.
We also learned that living in an apartment, and since we were technically poor, we qualified for the government issued 5 lb block of cheese! OMG that was good. Some cheap corn chips, some work with a cheese grader and a microwave, instant nachos!! I could almost eat a block of that in a day!
Then, you found the people who could cook, and took pity on you! My people were Barb and Terry! They were two very pretty sisters who lived at the top of the hill on my way home from campus. (OK I coulda taken another way home, but…)
They had an apartment with Barbs little baby girl Nicole. (Cutest little thing). The best part? Since Barb had a food allergy, (wheat flour) she had to back all of her own sweets if she wanted some (Cookies, brownies etc…)
Somehow I ALWAYS ended up there when she was taking something out of the oven! 🙂 I tired NOT to be a mooch though. I baby sat, gave back rubs, and helped entertain the little one when I was there. Though there was the one time Terry and I both turned our backs and Nicole fell off the bed. I almost caught her! (I woulda had her on the bounce….)
And the time, while helping Barb with swing dance class, I that I dropped HER on her face…. So maybe I wasn’t THAT helpful, but they still took pity on me, and kept feeding me!
Then there was the all you could eat Pizza feeds at the local establishments. My buddy Jim was the master of slipping one piece in his foil lined gym bag, for each that he ate. Pizza for a week afterwards!
The immortal one, Pete, would bit the condiment bar of the End Zone in the the Compton Union Building, and build himself a salad. He knew he needed a balanced diet!
I had a better deal, my dear friend, the lovely Stacy worked the cash register, every now and then, I would get $5 change for a $5 bill. However, I paid her back! Any time I made tuna casserole she would show up and help herself!
We learned to make do with what we had, and we survived. To this day I love Kraft Mac&cheese, and a good cheese burger. I can eat a block of cheese in a week. I am a much better cook now (though my enchiladas are ugly (TASTY, but ugly)). I, and the waistband of my pants, would NOT want to go back there now. But seeing that sign did make me smile when I remembered the fun and challenges we had…