The Lunch Circle and The Potato

12 Jul

Ever have one of those jobs where almost everything about it sucked. I mean you wake up in the morning and think please, please don’t call me. I need the money yes I do, but this is going to be a four-day work week. I’d rather have my sanity than earn a paycheck.

This was my life as a substitute teacher for middle school students. Middle school. This is an interesting species — the kind that makes you want to take a personal day once a week. But even though substituting for some of the classes was disastrous, I did manage to get something good out of it. The lunch circle.

Now, most of the time I was on special assignment, stuff like state exams and filling in at the dean’s office. During these times I was able to have lunch with a few people. To be more specific, it was a group of chicks, mostly walkie-talkie coordinators — Sanchez 1, Sanchez 2, Gonzalez and a couple of other regulars. But it was mainly these three ladies that formed my circle of trust.

But since I stopped working there, due to sanity purposes, I haven’t seen the lunch circle too often. But from time to time, something reminds me of them and I send an email or make a phone call just to catch up. Today was one of those days.

I was having lunch by myself, and I thought of them. Not so much because I was eating alone in front of the television, but because of what I was eating.


A potato.

A baked potato and a big salad. I remembered bringing this same meal with me to the lunch circle. But as everyone had their small containers of green, red, or orange Tupperware and their regular-sized portions, I unloaded a monster-sized Rubbermaid tub holding my big salad, and a potato on steroids.

Now aside from joking around about my large-sized portions it wasn’t the salad that had everyone cracking up. It was the potato. There I was piling on my toppings. And then came the butter. It just wasn’t a pad or a tablespoon. It was much more. It was a Paula-Deen-Juliet-Child type of butter measurement. So as I was building up my best potato, I see someone staring from behind and smiling.

“Are you gonna have some potato with that butter?”

I laughed and then put more butter on my spud.

So as I was eating my potato and big salad today, I thought about the lunch circle. I thought about the conversations we had about life, relationships, and television shows, food, and recipes But most of all I thought about the comments and stories that made me laugh.

So maybe the job did suck, but the lunches were pretty good.



7 Responses to “The Lunch Circle and The Potato”

  1. adinparadise July 13, 2012 at 2:17 AM #

    I also like a bit of toast,potato,muffin, with my butter. Your lunch looks to die for. 😉

  2. claywatkins July 13, 2012 at 4:34 AM #

    I teach middle school Language Arts and the day can be a grind, lunch is sometimes the only time I have that is sane! I try to stick on the small portion size; otherwise, I would fall asleep in the afternoon!

    • The Guat July 13, 2012 at 10:10 PM #

      I hear you. I’m all about the one hour sanity lunch. 🙂

  3. Frances antoinette July 13, 2012 at 2:01 PM #

    Although not a teacher, middle school kids can be pretty hectic to teach — especially as a sub teacher (I remember torturing sub teachers when I was that age, haha). Well at least you had a great stuffed potato for lunch to make you feel better.

    • The Guat July 13, 2012 at 10:29 PM #

      Yeah kids that age are a special species. Nowadays it’s much worse than it was before. You could get sent to the Dean’s Office and problem solved…now…not so much. Good thing I chose my sanity 🙂

  4. Sanchez2 July 16, 2012 at 3:30 PM #

    That was my favorite part of the day too, well that and you know who 🙂 miss you!!!!!!!

  5. L. July 17, 2012 at 7:15 AM #

    I always appreciate your healthy portions and your dedication with with you followed through! And as to the lunch circle——When you can find a good group of friends with which to enjoy a meal, it is certainly a good thing. They can get you through some pretty rough times.

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