Every day more than 2,100 students choose to eat their midday meal in the cafeteria here at Dunbar. Lunch is a chance for friends to catch up with each other while recharging for the rest of the school day. If all goes smoothly, the daily visit to the cafeteria is one of the brightest parts of a Dunbar student’s day.
After all, nothing can ruin the pleasure of good company and good food, right?
Every day, students act rudely to each other and to the cafeteria staff. They might be forgetful, malicious or just not mindful of their actions. Whatever the reason, Dunbar students need to review basic manners so lunch can again be the pleasant break from the school day it once was.
If one wishes to select a meal from the school menu, they must be prepared to forge their way through the lunch line. Students frequently cut in line, choosing to pass up their equally hungry classmates. And anyone who dares even consider the benefits of pushing their way through the line must stop there. They will not only annoy empty-stomached students but encourage some of them to ponder revenge for the next twenty minutes.
Furthermore, it is important to be nice not only to fellow students but the cafeteria staff too. The workers who come to the high school every day to serve the crowd of voracious teenagers deserve all the kindness one can afford. Everyone needs to treat the workers with the utmost respect. The cafeteria staff works hard to ensure that hundreds of students leave the cafeteria full from a nutritious meal. They do not deserve any of the irritation festering in a hungry, cranky high school student.
Next, in the perilous adventure of the mid-day meal at Dunbar, is the dilemma of selecting a seat. By this point in the school year, nearly all students know with whom they prefer to dine. However, every day, many find themselves bereft of a seat. Much to the annoyance of those already seated and waiting for tardy friends, some students resort to swiping a chair from occupied tables without asking permission. This is turn encourages more chair robbery as the straggles hunt for a replacement to the chair their friends so kindly tried to reserve for them. Please stop the vicious cycle today- do not steal chairs without the permission of those sitting nearby.
Also quite frustrating is when too many people sit at one table, blocking the pathways for other students. Yes, it’s wonderful to have a large group of friends together for lunch. No, it’s not very pleasant to juggle a cafeteria tray while navigating through a maze of overcrowded tables. Please scoot out of the way, so more hungry students can sit down to enjoy their meal.
Once all of the regulars at each cafeteria table obtain their food and find a seat, the volume in the cafeteria inches up towards deafening. Yes, this is the time of the day to ask friends how they are doing. No, this is not the time to exercise healthy vocal chords. If one must speak to another cafeteria patron no more than a brief greeting, relocate a seat in order to be nearer to them. Speaking with a voice that tramples others with its loudness does nothing to alleviate the problem. It only invites fellow lunchtime companions to raise their own voices, contributing further to the auditory chaos. Indeed, everyone must work towards the noble pursuit of a quieter lunch environment.
Alas, every day the delightful time known as lunch at Dunbar must come to a conclusion. Everyone must summon the nerves to continue through the remainder of the school day. In the inevitable dejection that comes with the conclusion of the midday meal, please refrain from expressing feelings through reckless abandonment of trays and litter. Nor should anyone dare push their way through the massive crowd squeezing through two doorways. Simple accept the circumstances as they are and enjoy the last fleeting moments of lunch.
Unfortunately, the students who choose to dine in the cafeteria seem to make very poor lunchtime companions as the school year progresses. Courteous freshmen, polite sophomore, genial juniors and well-mannered seniors turn absolutely barbarous once they enter the cafeteria.
Make lunchtime at Dunbar one of the highlights of the day for all students once again. Act with courtesy towards all classmates and cafeteria staff, and reap the rewards of a delightful lunch.