One thing that Swatties love is food. So much of our lives are centered around food: from discussing what’s going to be for dinner at Sharples to wishing that Indian Bar happened more often, food is definitely something that unites all Swatties. Thus, it makes sense that there are a lot of events on campus that revolve around food—eating food, but also making food! Each of the dorms on campus have a kitchen where students are allowed to make snacks and/or meals, and these are highly utilized by students, whether it’s making a bowl of instant ramen during a late night study session or making something fancier like whipping up some pancakes on a Saturday morning.
These kitchens are often the location of campus events as well. Recently, Kizuna, the Japanese cultural club on campus, hosted a Sukiyaki night, where we all got together in Danawell kitchen and prepared a meal of Sukiyaki (which is basically Japanese Beef Hot Pot)! We bought all of the necessary ingredients at a nearby Hmart: beef, rice, sukiyaki sauce, lots of vegetables, mushrooms, noodles, tofu. Then, we got to work. Everyone had an assigned job, from rinsing the mushrooms to cutting the tofu to soaking the noodles. Eventually, after about an hour or so of preparing food, we were ready to eat our sukiyaki!
The sukiyaki turned out to be really delicious, thanks to all of our hard work. Everyone had plenty to eat, and we even had so much left over that we ended up making a soup with our extra food as well. As amazing as the food was, the memories I made meant even more to me. Kizuna is a pretty absurd club at some points (including when we do things like ask existential questions such as, “Are fish wet?” or “What is the right way for dogs to wear pants?”), and the absurdity was certainly not lacking during Sukiyaki night. I think this gif does all the explaining necessary.
Overall, in the midst of the midterm season, this Sukiyaki night was a wonderful way for everyone to relax, have fun, and eat some great Japanese food. And apparently do some really weird shenanigans. (I love Kizuna so much.)
The point is, Swatties value meal times so much because it’s a time where we get to slow down, take a break from all of our studying and extracurriculars, and just enjoy ourselves. The Swattie life can be a hectic, stressful one, and food provides a break from that. Since so much of our lives at Swat are centered around food (I mean, you’re gonna end up eating three meals a day somehow), so many memories stem from these events around food, whether it’s having a weekly dinner date with your best friend at Sharples to having a late night snack at Essie’s with your study group to making food in the kitchen with a club. Food is something that brings us all together, but because of this, meal times become more than just a time to eat; they become a time to socialize, relax, and make lasting memories.