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12B - The Michigan Daily - Weekend Magazine - Thursday, April 4, 2002
The Michigan Daily - Weekend Mega
TACO: THE LAST PIECE OF MY HEART
ORIGINAL FICTION BY ZAC PESKOWITZ, JESS PISKOR
AND MANISH RAwJ
DARY Am WRrrERS
Shuffling through the doors of the cafeteria, her mis-
matched slippers dragging against the cold tiled floor, Babs
could think of only one thing. Two things, actually. The first:
Her medication, which she had hidden for the 12th day in a
row, a pile of pills beneath her hard mattress. The second:
Throbbing anticipation for the promised Tex-Mex extrava-
"Coen has arrived." Pulsing across the corridor, the plucky
Italian embraced the impressionable woman.
"Babs, I've brought your favorite dish, an en-chi-la-da."
The sonorous words rolled from his massive chest.
"Coen, I hate enchiladas. Did you remember the tacos?"
She desperately pleaded, a tear rolling down her sullen lips.
Much as she'd tried, Babs could think of nothing but the
pleasure she associated with the spicy roll - so hard, yet
still so soft. Her right hand wandered down his side and to
her own hip, entering the pocket of her robe and fingering
the three packets of fire sauce that her brother had snuck in
"My dear, my lovely Babs!" Coen feigned disappointment
at her lack of faith. His hand roamed over the small of her
back, plucking at her robe, his mind on the sour cream he
was sure she had hidden somewhere. "You doubt me, my
love. Is it not possible foryour dining partner to tease you,
Her eyes, smoldering.
"Yes, my love. Your tacos are ready for those sweet lips."
He pulled her close and whispered, "Come ... with ... me."
They walked, arm-in-arm, a slow dance to the long table
where a tray of moist Mexican dishes awaited their greedy
appetites. Her lips, wet.
Babs reached for her pockets. Inside, a tight container
filled with sour cream, awaited. They shared the cream and
spread it across their bounty. The tacos, still warm from the
oven, melted the sauce and leaked qff their plates.
Reaching below the table their eyes briefly met. An
ephemeral glimpse and then a moment of pure transcen-
dence mingling with infinity.
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By Michael Grass
Daily Food and Drink Critic
In my sixth grade science class,
my teacher was adamant - almost
anal - about following the scientif-
ic method in lab write-ups. I suppose
it was important, and the benefits of
spending hours writing up exactly
how my lab partners and I created
kinetic energy by burning a piece of
string cheese have rubbed off.
Taste-testing, though not a precise
scientific art by any means, does fall
under the general rules of the scien-
tific method. And trying to find out
which residence hall has the best
food by way of scientific comparison
takes discipline, detailed methodolo-
gy and a keen sense of taste.
But such a culinary comparative
feat would be way too difficult to
organize and execute. Anyway, is a
scientific survey of the University.
dining halls worth the effort?
So instead, I present to you a pure-
ly unscientific survey. To refresh my
memory, a few generous Daily
staffers who live in the residence
halls allowed me to use their Entree
Plus dollars to jog my memory of the
dining halls so I could write this
There is no margin of error or per-
centage points. The conclusions here
are entirely my own. Use with cau-
"Dude, it's chicken nugget night!"
South Quad has always been the
quintessential college dining hall:
Self-service, tile floors, long lines.
The dining hall environment here
seems semi-antiseptic, highlighted
with neon in attempts to "jazz"
Whoever the N hN
designers were in
the early 1990s
who came up with prshfrtit, *e
scheme did a hor- matterj, hot
rible job fusing a k
"fun" with "func-
But as for the I~Frch dip
masses, they don't
seem to mind. And CQ:Z<><S
do the masses ever Rd ia f
come to South E
Quad. When I was ...t.w....:
there last month, -I-y nw it
arrived on the '
chicke nugget e f rga
night, with the do-N .
it-yourself "fixins" "si vrw-e at
bar replete with
dipping sauces. s N
To save myself
American-fare). Taco night deserves
South Quad also falls victim to its
layout, for some of the essentials are
illogically located. This forces
patrons to fight their way through
traffic, e.g. trying -
to get to the soft- A ',
serve ice cream O e
machine from the
main dining area. A u~ y, co
many other dining e
halls, patrons mustt
engage in balancing y 'ibc
acts, filling up cups
with one hand wwhl tomktGp:t
while keeping the eIsMon set!
heavy tray from
falling victim to the 'Btrjjy;'
forces of gravity Sexy Grandpa
with the other.
Besides its insti- Est Quad:
tutional feel, South Abundant ve
Quad has hospital- vegan opttin
ity issues. Every bake, Rd b
person - there
(except the friend- iaty rkiey
ly card swiper) Grle5 pIta s
looks pissed off, serve machin
questioning their n
very existence. s N N
This is especial-
ly true for the labor-intensive tray
return personnel. While most resi-
dence halls don't require you to sep-
arate your silverware, South Quad
does. And if you don't, the people
stationed in the scullery will let you
'LIE' congestion and how to get Ice
cream privileges revoked
My freshman year in 1998, I
resided at Mary Markley, and like
South Quad and Bursley, Markley
feeds a huge num-
MAkS: ber of people
N. ~ ~ } N .)everyday.
N.~e N.e r y Although
T A l t h o u g h
ef ta N.NN.Nhall wasn't built
Qgs, attempts' to feed the entire
tzQ plzza Hill-area, it
like it did.
" N At 4:55 p.m.
most days, a call
Y is N. went out on 6th
p Fisher and my
N. J hall's "dinner club"
S would assemble
-Nrkand make it to the
card swiper about
five minutes before
o e be Markley's back
scNliery side would flood
the serving area
r like the evening
rush hour on the
Long Island Expressway.
I always enjoyed Markley's food.
It was nothing to write home about,
but it always seemed to be better
than other Hill dining halls. The
staff was generally friendly, except
for the occasional random person
who was working there because of
an MIP or discipline infraction.
To current Markley residents:
Here is a sure fire way to get your
soft-serve ice cream privileges
revoked (besides the elementary
method of drop-
eat, NCOOf ping cones down
| abfe; -- 'the stairwells).
Go to any room
preferably on the
fifth or sixth
floor, and open a
y "window. Look
1d heese out and see if
sup, there are any
A+ service windows that are
Simply drop a
cone out the win-
dow and watch
how laughter fills
etarian and the room. If
chicken rice you're lucky, the
r cone will stick to
the open window,
and the unfortu-
i4wich, soft nate resident
post4inner below won't be
able to reach
sr ai E m ~around outside
and clean it off.
(Note: I am not advocating acts
of soft-serve ice cream vandalism. I
am only relaying a method to get
soft-serve privileges revoked.
Ahhh, the memories of freshmen
year juvenile delinquency. Perhaps
this is why 6th Fisher and 6th Van
Tyne are girls halls now.)
There is a hidden gem on campus
that only a few people know about:
the dining room at Betsey Barbour.
Before I moved off-campus, I ate at
Barbour quite frequently - mainly
While South Quad's eating facil-
ity should be classified as a "cafe-
teria" rather than a "dining hall"
(Michigan Daily style rules outlaws
the use of "cafeteria" and "dorm"
in articles), Barbour should be
appropriately classified as a dining
room. I don't care if Bursley has
Endeavoring to find the best
dorm food: a pointless pursuit
The salad bar is essential on mystery me
"Sexy Grandpa" - the staff at
Betsey Barbour has been and will
always be the best around.
Although Barbour serves the
same food as West Quad, it is in
smaller quantities. Thus, the food
always seemed to be served with an
extra helping of tender loving care.
Kudos to Barbour, you all are the
Institutionalized food cannot
improve ... ever
I could go on and on about how
the spinach at East Quad was wilt-
ed on one visit or how Stockwell's
dining hall reminds me of a run
A look at the
underside of U of M
Hours.' 5:00 am
734-663-5959 or 888-663-5959
-8:00 pm daily Rr
PM Reserve by 8:8
from mental anguish, I'll sum things
up: Nothing says "utter shit" like
chicken nugget night. (But to fresh-
men and athletes still accustomed to
their high school's hot lunch line,
chicken nugget night seems to satis-
fy their urge for mass-produced