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Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Well, Eldest Gel went back to Sweet Briar yesterday.  It rather boggles the mind that she’s a second semester sophomore already, and that in just a few short months she’ll be…halfway done with college!

She made Dean’s List again last semester (my apologies if I’ve already mentioned this) and has officially declared as a history major with a concentration in Early Modern Europe.  (We happened to be watching the Monty Python episode with the sketch in which Cardinal Richelieu is called as a character witness in a parking offense trial, and I noticed that she was chuckling deeply at the actual historickal facts about the man woven into the script.)  She’s also considering a theatre minor or possibly even a musickal theatre minor.

There’s a big change at SBC this semester, by the bye, in that they’ve taken on a new food services contractor.  This really is a big deal.  I tried never to agree with the Gel that the old service was no better than “prison food” because I don’t like to encourage complaining but, yeah, it really was pretty awful.  The few times I’d eaten on campus in the past year and a half, the food was typically ill-prepared, of scanty variety, and usually stone-cold when served.  In fact it was so bad that the Gel almost never ate in the dining hall, but instead bought instant mac-n-cheese in bulk,** and, when she wanted some variety, headed out to Sheetz or Hate-Fil-A.***  Not only did this involve extra money and travel, it also meant that she ate in her room a lot instead of socializing over to the dining hall.

Mrs. Robbo and other alums had been banging on this issue ever since they organized up to save the school a couple years ago.  How was SBC supposed to recruit students if it offered such a poor service?  Again, I didn’t want to agree publicly because this sort of thing can quickly deteriorate into what I think of as competitive pampering, but they did have a point.  As for the new Administration, they acknowledged that they were running with a cut-rate caterer and that the results showed, but they said they had more important priorities to nail down first, and counseled patience.

Well, it now seems the patience is paying off.  If you click on the linky, there’s lots of blather about the new caterer being grrrrl-powered and eco-friendly and whatnot, but the bottom line is that everyone I know of who has had any experience of them raves about the actual food quality.  When I asked the Gel about her first dinner under the new regime, her one word reply was “fantastic”.

So this is a Good Thing. Hopefully, not only will she get a better diet, she’ll also hob-knob during meals instead of skulking in the dorm.

** She’ll have plenty of opportunity to do that once she’s out of school and struggling.

*** A running joke in the Port Swiller household.  We’ve been calling Chick-Fil-A (which we love) by this name ever since the Socialist Juicebox Wankers tried to mau-mau it a couple years back because of the owners’ unabashed Christianity.  We always speak of “hate sammiches”, “hate shakes”, and “fries of intolerance”, and it’s a running gag that every time the Gel comes home from there, she says, “You know what those intolerant bastards did?  They told me to have a nice day! Who the hell do they think they are!!”  I, personally, never get tired of this joke.



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January 2018