At a school I recently visited on my Cheesie Mack book tour, I arrived as breakfast was being served. It was a sugary, carbo feast, consisting of a paper carton of chocolate milk, a plastic container of sweetened applesauce and a hard boiled egg in a twist-tied plastic bag, and a cinnamon bun in cellophane. All four items were packaged in a plastic container. Of the forty children (ages 7-11) whom I witnessed, a few paid their $1.50, but most of the breakfasts were subsidized by government funds. Since I had 15 minutes until my first group of students would arrive for their hour with an author, I observed the breakfast.
Most striking was the gusto the cinnamon buns engendered. Every child consumed every crumb and icing drizzle.Three children, seemingly swept into near unconsciousness by the sugar buzz, finished their pastries, inverted the cellophane packaging with one hand inside, and methodically, carefully, systematically licked every molecule of sucrose off the inside of the plastic as if they were zombies consuming icing popsicles.
The chocolate milk was also greatly appreciated. Every carton was opened. Three-quarters of the kids finished every drop.
The garbage can was full of food. And plenty of plastic packaging.
100% Cinnamon bun
75% Chocolate milk
15% Sweetened applesauce
5% Hard-boiled egg
Childhood obesity. Diabetes. Waste.
We’re sowing. And we will reap.