Veggie Vacancy

It’s a typical sight: I cannot contain a grin as I skip into Brooks.
I haven’t eaten yet and I’ve been in class since 8:00 a.m. –– nothing to relieve the stress of Calculus like a delicious vegetarian feast!
I dart through the line, smirking at all of the meat eaters, who will doubtlessly still be there when I head for a second helping. I slide past the sandwiches and finally make it to the coveted vegetarian–friendly section, where I stare salivating over the gleaming piles of applesauce and corn.
My excitement is too great; in order to avoid an awkward situation, I excuse myself and mosey over to the soup selection. Not, of course, to imply that I’m not going to go back and dollop a generous serving of applesauce on my plate later on, but it’s always best to know what all of the options are to prevent regret in the future.
A tiny frown tugs at the corners of my lips at the realization that they must have completely by accident forgotten to leave a vegetarian soup again.
No matter! I’ll just eat some deliciously fresh lettuce and some pita chips with hummus! As usual! I can even mix it up with some of that nourishing applesauce!
Thinking back on Brooks–meals–past, a plethora of salads and grilled cheese punctuated with hard–boiled eggs is what immediately comes to mind.
Not that I’m complaining, of course, everyone knows that all vegetarians love and cherish the crisp lettuce and chickpeas available in a wholesome salad such as those available in Brooks. And grilled cheese has at least five grams of protein per sandwich! I wonder for a fraction of a second what the vegans among us must do for protein, but I quickly remember the smooth hummus and fresh pita chips. There’s also…hmm, is there protein in cereal?
I also truly have to admire the creative genius behind the options at the vegetarian section at Brooks. The combinations of food available at the neighboring meat line are typical and boring –– beef and potatoes? Chicken and spaghetti?! A much more satisfying combination would be those found in the vegetarian line, such as steamed mystery vegetables and applesauce, especially with carrots on the side.
The sign above these adoringly put together meals comically reads, “Unhappy with the current selection?” and has often been pointed out to me; however, there are inconsistencies, such as how there is supposedly always a vegetarian soup option.
Yes, there is a salad bar, and yes, I could always choose to put my salad between two pieces of bread and call it a sandwich, and yes, there is always cereal or the extremely healthy cheese pizza option –– but perhaps more protein–rich options, such as tofu and other types of beans at the salad bar, would help me stay awake through the mind-boggling revelations in Calc–157.
McKinley’s also boasts a “Crunch” line for vegetarian options, featuring things such as individually priced but obviously complimentary food options, which is nice if you are the kind of person who wants to eat hummus with a fork (or something similar).
And the vegetarian burritos at the already infamous Cantina (which I hear has mucho great eats) may be priced the same as those with meat, but for a mere $1.25 extra, you can get it with a generous helping of subpar guacamole.
One sincere stipulation for this article is that I appreciate whole–heartedly the incredibly tolerant staff at our various eating establishments, who have put up with many a night made rowdy by intense games of Monopoly, and I mean no offense to any of them.
It’s Parkhurst to whom I plead to consider the protein–deprived student.