Lunchtime rules: how not to starve when on campus

By the time noon rolls around, the parking lots are overflowing and stomachs all over campus are growling on empty. It is hard to concentrate in class, especially when all you can think about is the location of your next meal.

Lunchtime is like being at the watering hole on the African Savanah. All the animals are in a frenzy, frantically searching for a means to alleviate their hunger pains. The Paw Print, Old Main Market and South Paw are the top choice for Bearkats when in need of a good source of nourishment on campus.

Each place has a structured hierarchy with different groups of students, cliques and loners with their designated places of gathering. Even as various people separate to their various tables and benches, each group is afflicted by the same issue: endless lines.

Speaking from personal experience, trying to get food from any food venue on campus during the hours from 12 to 3 p.m. is nearly impossible. It seems as if the entire student body, faculty and staff makes a B-line the nearest restaurant and congregates in the hopes of getting a chicken nugget to snack on.

In turn, the congestion causes confusion and tempers generally run high. But it is to be expected when hungry people are herded into a small space who are on the verge of starvation.

My suggestions on what you can do to combat the issue of 10,000 students seeking substance from limited sources are as follows:

1. Show up early and claim a spot at the front of the line. Just like the pioneers, you have to stake your claim and mark your territory. The words “stand your ground” come to mind but I am pretty sure that they apply to some other non-sensible law.

Unfortunately, most people have classes that end at noon so leaving lecture 30 minutes early is not very plausible and I’m sure that your professor would not appreciate it either.

2. Your next option is to pack your own lunch. Just like back in grade school, slap some peanut butter and jelly onto a couple of slices of stale bread and throw it into a brown paper sack and you’re on your way. But if you’re like most college students you don’t have time to be making sandwiches every morning so you show up to school with your Bearkat OneCard and no sack lunch.

3. You can opt to wait in line and hope that Lady Luck is on your side. Rushing out of class to go stand in line will not guarantee that you will get food but it’s a risk that you have to take since you can’t leave class early and are too lazy to pack a lunch.

4. Your final option is to simply starve. I mean you can’t be bothered to pack a lunch, leave class early or wait in line so “no soup for you.”

If none of these options work for you, here are some more tips that can help you in your search for food. Chick-fil-A usually has a ton of sandwiches hot and ready but the line is thwarted by people waiting for waffle fries that can’t ever seem to be fried fast enough. Simply cut the line, grab a spicy chicken sandwich and make a run for the cashier before you get caught.

While searching for a place to eat, scan the lines for a buddy, a roommate or even an acquaintance you may have gotten notes from that one time and make best friends so you can cut in line and increase your chances of getting lunch.

Remember, lunch is the second most important meal and with these being your only choices, try each one out until you find the one that works best for you.

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