By Bohdin Bright

JRC — After long weeks of protest, the plaintive cries of the student body have been heard at last. Exercising her divine mandate to rule, Anne Harris has graciously ordered the college administration to negotiate with the student body to lay out plans for new dining options that will fit the varied and diverse needs of the students while still making them lots of money. Although the dining hall won’t be ready to offer these new selections until next year, the B&S has been given a sneak peek at the upcoming menu. The centerpiece? Gruel.

Made from a proprietary blend of sawdust, hot water, and old multivitamin tablets that got discontinued because everyone just buys vitamin gummies now, this legally edible gruel will just barely fulfill the minimum requirements to count as food. On the plus side, it’s vegan, kosher, halal, allergen-free, and regular-free too, just so long as any student that wants a bowl is willing to offer up four hours of hard labor in the college workhouses per serving. Focus groups of students have given it high praise, saying that it’s “dehumanizing” and “worse than starving.” Several students even started crying after tasting it – tears of joy, no doubt. The dining hall workers love it too, vats of gruel being far easier to make than dozens of different plat de jours that all get ignored in favor of mediocre tempura chicken nuggets anyway.

But while gruel may be the most accessible new dining option, it’s far from the most popular. The system of Dining Dollars has been reevaluated and found to be too limiting. For students abroad – such as those living on High Street – food taken from the Spencer Grill will often go cold long before they arrive back home, and making the trip several times per day takes far too much time out of their schedules. For these busy students, Brining Dollars is the answer. Added to existing meal plans just like Dining Dollars, Brining Dollars can be used to purchase long-lasting salted rations such as hardtack, salt pork, and dried citrus rinds to fend off scurvy, which can be bought and stored in bulk before being portioned out as needed. Additionally, as a fun surprise, each order will come with several free rats that can serve as either companionship or meat depending on your needs at the time.

The new meal plans even include options that aren’t traditionally considered food. The already-nicknamed “Plan B(ug)” will let students scrounge around inside the salad bar for spare insects that escaped the chemical pesticide bath that all vegetables go through. While the number of potential students on this plan is still limited by the number of bugs that survive, Grinnell is already hard at work engaging in corporate lobbying to get pesticide restrictions lightened, increasing the insect supply while still keeping all of the long-term carcinogenic risks of exposure to toxic chemicals. However, until then, this meal plan will remain an expensive symbol of both wealth and bravery.

While it might be disappointing to see that your favorite food has been left out of the new meal plans, negotiations are still ongoing, so make sure to make your voice heard about what you think should be served at the dining hall! A suggestion box has been set up inside the JRC, and in just three weeks, the collected suggestions will be ritually burned so that an oracle can interpret the ashes into the will of the gods.