Wednesday, March 01, 2006

And now, from the "Traveling at the speed of mashed potatoes" files and Yahoo! News...

Sudiegirl sez: In my thirty-seven years, I have never been in a food fight. I have been in pillow fights and water fights. I have also been in food-sculpting contests at music camp (but I didn’t win). Something tells me that these kids will probably never want to be in one again. Do’h!

Students to Pay for Massive Food Fight
Tue Feb 28, 6:45 PM ET

A massive middle school food fight left several students suspended and the eighth-grade class footing the cleaning bill that included the cost of scraping mashed potatoes off the ceiling. (Now THAT was a successful food fight, man. Any event that ends with scraping mashed potatoes off the ceiling is pretty darned memorable. Sounds like some Thanksgiving dinners I’ve attended over the years.)

Last week's fight at Chesterton Middle School left ceiling tiles damaged and could cost the students as much as $1,000 to pay for overtime, maintenance and repairs, said Duneland School Corporation Superintendent Dirk Baer. (Wow. That would have cured my butt right there. I’d be thinking “pound of flesh” even though I hadn’t read any Shakespeare at that time.)

"It wasn't just one or two kids throwing grapes," Baer said. "There were mashed potatoes sticking to the ceiling." (I wonder how successful Lionel Richie would have been if he sang, “Oh, what a feeling – mashed potatoes on the ceiling…” It just doesn’t flow, man. But it sure does stick, huh?)

Security cameras captured the fracas that broke out about halfway through the 25-minute lunch period Wednesday at the school in the town 15 miles east of Gary. (That’s a word I love hearing and saying…”fracas”. It’s such a picturesque word, you know?)

The school suspended between six and 10 students for two or three days for launching the day's menu of chicken-fried steak, mashed potatoes and milk into the air. (Oh man…only six to ten actually acted it out? They’ve probably been crucified several times over.)

As many as 50 students might have been involved. Principal Jim Ton recommended one student be expelled. (I’d love to know why, wouldn’t you?)

Cleaning costs will be taken from the eighth grade's extracurricular activity fund. (Ooh…that’s going to piss off a lot of kids that didn’t have anything to do with it.)

Baer said the whole class was punished because many of the grade's 500 students knew about plans for the food fight but failed to alert administrators. (Now see, that’s where I guess I have a problem. Why would they punish those who didn’t participate but knew about the plan to chuck chicken-fried steak? I think that’s kind of slimy, plus administrators apparently forgot the punishment “squealers” can get from their peers. Then again, maybe the administrators were squealers too and this is just some kind of cosmic revenge thingie? God only knows. I’m just glad I’m not a teacher…I would have been fired on my first day.)

"It was planned and it was widely known that it would happen, but nobody said anything," Baer said. "Everybody has to take responsibility." (Uh-huh. But let the responsibility fit the person’s participation. Those who didn’t squeal but didn’t participate should be dealt with differently than those who chucked their lunches around. And, I’m sorry, expelling someone JUST for participating in a food fight is stupid. Unless the student has been cruising for a bruising or put someone’s eye out with some mashed potatoes, they shouldn’t be expelled. Suspended, maybe, but not expelled.)
Information from: Post-Tribune,
Sudiegirl’s final opinion?

Personally, with school food being as frightening as it is, maybe the students were just defending themselves against the chicken-fried steak? Come on, now…it could happen!


I received a very interesting comment from a student at Chesterton Middle School (you can look at the original in my comments section), and thought I'd reproduce the comment here for those of you who don't want to deal with the complexity of clicking on the comments field.

Hey, I just searched this food fight, and I found your blog, which gave an interesting view on things. I'm a student at CHesterton Middle School, and it was Crazy. Steve (The kid who started it) is getting an expulsion hearing. I dunno whether it will come to anything. WE have funds taken away from the end of the year formal, and are operating under a new cafeteria system, where students who eat lunches from home sit on one side, hile students who buy their lunches
sit on the other, effectively giving the lunch-from-school side a major
advantage. We also have a new camcorder, not a security camera (we have two of those in the cafeteria already), but a camcorder, opperated by a custodian.What I am surprised of most is the publicity this is getting. WE were on Tv in several states, by my google searches, including Arizona, which is just insane.

GUess it was just a slow news day.

I'd have to say I agree, kiddo.