Wednesday, March 02, 2016

What Mr. Z Eats in College: Meal 052


3.1.16 Lunch

MR. Z.: Here's today's lunch. They had a pretzel bite station and, of course, I had to try that out. They're just as greasy and amazing as your classic pretzel bites. Topped off with a hot dog (turkey, of course) and a ton of kale.

This meal's color palette:


Pretzel Bite Station?! Isn't that where Thomas the Diabetic Tank Engine lives? This meal covers a LOT of ground, Mr. Z. First of all, I don't think there's such a thing as "your classic pretzel bites." I'm pretty sure they didn't exist pre-2013. I do like that you stuck to the ballpark theme by adding the hotdog, though. Nothing helps wash down some greasy, amazing pretzel bites like turkey beaks, nipples and anuses. The "ton of kale" definitely helps balance the meal out, although I'm guessing it really only cancels out the hotdog OR the "bites." Crack your window tonight before going to sleep.

*************Colon Motility Forecast: Some Delays... Try A Glass of Benefiber with Breakfast*************

Friday, January 29, 2016

What Mr. Z. Eats in College: Meal 051


1.27.16 Dinner

MR. Z.: Veggie burger. Also, white bean "salad" with kale, of course.

This meal's color palette:


This is actually an historic post: there's officially more produce on that plate than carbs. It's... dare I say... a balanced meal! Frankly, I didn't think I'd live to see this day. I'd like to thank everyone who helped Mr. Z get to where he is today: me, the Old Lady, the farmers of southwestern Wisconsin, the Kale Institute, PETA, Alicia Silverstone, and Mr. Potato Head. We did it!

*************Colon Motility Forecast: Smooth sailing!!!*************

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

What Mr. Z Eats in College: Meal 050


1.25.16 Dinner

ME: Ooh, that looks good...

MR. Z.: Yeah, great meal! Complete with kale!

ME: Your new friend, Kale?

MR. Z.: We're becoming good chums. He's easy on my bowels.

This meal's color palette:


He's got the kernel of the right idea here. There's no pizza on the plate, bonus, and there are greens. Unfortunately, the greens are part of a pasta salad that is sitting beside his main course: pasta. (Which is sitting beside his other main course: grilled cheese sandwich.) At least he's washing it all down with a nutritious orange beverage. I can't complain, though, as this is light years ahead of where he started the school year. Keep up the kale, Mr. Z!

Colon motility forecast: Doughy with a chance of kale...

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

What Mr. Z. Eats in College: Meal 049


1.18.16 Lunch

MR. Z.: First meal of second semester. Veggie melt sandwich, "blonde" pizza with some sort of greens and a kale salad. Semester 2 is starting off well. Hopefully the kale doesn't destroy my bowels.

This meal's color palette:


A whole new semester yields a whole new color palette. I see a little lilac in there and, what is that... heliotrope?!  Yes, Mr. Z. is back at school after five weeks at home. It was great having him back at the homestead for so long. In fact, it was almost like he never left... his room. Which he didn't. I think he enjoyed the downtime but I'm pretty sure he was ready to get back to school after about 72 hours, 24 sticks of string cheese and a metric ton of Cheez-Its. Hopefully, this semester, he'll learn that it's the carbs and not the kale that his colon needs to be worried about.

Also, I'd be concerned about pizza that's named after hair.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats in College: Meal 048


12.12.15 Lunch

MR. Z.: Turkey sandwich thing that was really good and a bun with hummus and arugula and various other vegetables (and, of course, even more greens on the side). I'm not sure how you're going to complain about this meal -- it was pretty amazing.

This meal's color palette:


I don't mean to be a doubting Dorothy but there's no way he ate all those greens. That's a decoy plate if ever I've seen one -- just out of frame there's a mop bucket filled with cheddar fries, mac and cheese and Little Debbie Zebra Cakes. However, if you truly ate that meal, Mr. Z., then I'm giving you an A+ for the semester. Especially since the very first meal pic you sent me this year was this:


I'll bet there are still hunks of that crust wedged into your ileocecal junction. Don't worry, though. Just keep flushing your system with whatever that red liquid is and you'll be fine. Safe travels home, Mr. Z! See you soon!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

What Mr. Z. Eats in College: Meal 047


12.8.15 Dinner

MR. Z.: Tonight was a "mac and cheese bar" (so basically there were MASSIVE vats of mac and cheese). I took advantage of the opportunity and may or may not have gotten seconds, too. That veggie burger is a substitute for the nightly salad. It was pretty decent (though honestly, the only reason I didn't get a salad was because I couldn't fit it on my plate).

ME: You know where you need to sleep tonight?

MR. Z.: One of the dorms actually has a tub. I'll sleep there.

This meal's color palette:


All of my sphincters reflexively slammed shut when I looked at that plate. That's probably a half pound of pasta right there and he says he got seconds. No wonder our grocery bills plummeted by $150 after he left for school. I'm sure Italy is like, "Cosa รจ successo a tutti gli ordini di pasta da Michigan?! Stiamo per andare fuori dal mercato! Mamma mia!" Oh well, he'll be home for a month starting next week, which should help restart the Italian economy. I also love that, in Mr. Z.'s mind, a veggie burger on a bun with a Kraft single is the equivalent of a salad. Would it kill him to at least tuck a piece of lettuce into that thing? Get some green into that color palette, Mr. Z!

Wednesday, December 02, 2015

What Mr. Z. Eats in College: Meal 046


12.1.15 Dinner

MR. Z.: Dinner tonight. This was carrot coconut soup and I was a bit apprehensive at first, but it was amazing. Wasn't feeling pizza, so why not take a risk? (The "Global" line has had lots of red meat lately, which sucks.)

This meal's color palette:


I have nothing to complain about with this meal. Can't get much healthier than carrot soup with a side of "no pizza." The "Global" that he mentioned is the "Global Gourmet Daily Special" that we noticed on the menu and are trying to get Mr. Z to explore a bit more. Apparently it should be called "The Meat Lover's Global Gourmet Daily Special." I did notice that today's global lunch special is:


Give that a try, Mr. Z.! You like noodles AND it has aminos in it! Just like real Cantonese chefs use in their authentic Cantonese-style cooking! I can't tell you how many times I've been to Cantonese-style restaurants and said, "You know, these noodles are good but they'd be even more delicious with a little Lysine sprinkled on them. And maybe some Threonine and Glutamic Acid! Oh waiter! Bring me some aminos!!!"

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats in College: Meal 045


11.24.15 Dinner

Mr. Z.: Dinner.

This meal's color palette:



Does this photo really need any commentary? Do I really need to say that I hope that that's a bowl of Cocoa Puffs and not a collection of the petrified smellets that he was barely able to squeeze out after ingesting that mummified chicken sandwich and the mess o' fries from last night? Must I question why he'd get a glass of chocolate milk when the cereal automatically manufactures its own chocolate milk when you pour regular milk over it? Need I ponder whether that's an orange in the upper left or if it's a brick of Colby cheese that he gnawed on in between spoonfuls of chocolate?

Yeah, I didn't think so.

Monday, November 23, 2015

What Mr. Z. Eats in College: Meal 044


11.22.15 Dinner

MR. Z.: Went to DK's for dinner due to the lack of a frozen pizza in the fridge. I was originally gonna get some chicken tenders, but then I was like, "Hey, I should probably get something with some semblance of healthy stuff, huh?" So I got a chicken sandwich that said it had lettuce, tomato and onions. Lo and behold, I got it and guess what it didn't have? Lettuce, tomato or onions. But it did have Swiss cheese, so that negates everything else, right? Also, those fries were better than any "fries" I've EVER had at Commons. The Izze was amazing.

This meal's color palette:



I'm guessing the Izze was "amazing" because it allowed that dessicated-looking chicken-bun to somehow slide down his gullet without lodging in his epiglottis. That is one scratchy looking meal. I'm hoping that the red splatter on the plate is ketchup and not part of his larynx. Those fries do look good, though. Perhaps the chef at Commons could learn a thing or two from the work-study sophomore who most likely fried up that batch of crispy taters at DK's. Don't worry, Mr. Z, you'll get some solid meals under your belt this week at grandma and grandpa's house. And if you're lucky, we'll stop here for lunch.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats: Meal 043


11.17.15 Lunch

MR. Z.: Lunch today. I realized that I should've taken a picture about halfway through my tots. I also had another grilled cheese afterwards and, subsequently, went into a carb coma.

This meal's color palette:


I guess we need to remember that carboholism is a disease. As they say, you need to take it "one tot at at a time." Sure, Mr. Z's intentions were good -- go for the tomato soup. Rich, healthy, comforting on a chilly autumn day. But where there's tomato soup, there's always a grilled cheese. And, apparently, where there's a grilled cheese, there are tots. And as they also say, "one tot is too many and a thousand not enough." And what better to wash a thousand tots down with than... a second grilled cheese. Maybe, with a little bit of luck and a giant salad at dinner, "this, too, shall pass."



Friday, November 13, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats: Meal 042


11.12.15 Dinner

MR. Z.: So this was actually last night's dinner, but over the past few days, I've finally found the trick to Commons. Instead of going for pizza (... well, even though there's a slice of pizza on the plate, that's the only time I've had it this week), I've been making grilled cheeses with the panini press once a day, and they always turn out amazingly. Better than almost anything else I've had here. Next step is probably a turkey melt.

This meal's color palette:


The chestnut hues of that stellar panini have muscled the greens of the salad straight out of that color palette. And look at that, he's down to just one slice of pizza per meal -- must be the pizza patch he started wearing to wean him off of his six-slice-a-day habit. And paninis are nothing like pizza. You've got two pieces of bread, pressed together and heated up, and filled with gooey melted cheese... yep, nothing like pizza.

Monday, November 09, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats: Meal 041


11.7.15 Dinner

MR. Z.: I've recently decided that Saturday nights are the time where I just say "fuck it" and go wild, hence this carb overload (#carboverload). A sub sandwich, a grilled cheese turkey melt, and two slices of "white pizza." (Commons with that thinly-veiled racism, huh? Not fun.) Thankfully, I made a salad.

This meal's color palette:



I wouldn't be surprised if Mr. Z gets some sort of commendation from The Gluten Society of America for single-handedly offsetting all of the financial losses the gluten-free people have caused the gluten industry. (Pro Tip: You might want to double up on those salads for the next few days, Mr. Z.)

Sunday, November 01, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats: Meal 040


10.30.15 Dinner

MR. Z.: It's "Bacon Day" in Commons. A huge downgrade from AppleFest. Lord help me. (There's even bacon in the cupcakes.) This is what I ended up with. Sadly, I had to regress back to pizza and greens, and then a "vegan tostada" or something that'll likely look similar to the aftermath of this meal tomorrow morning.

This meal's color palette:


Look, I try not to make every one of my comments have something to do with poop but meals like this make it down right impossible. Vegan tostada my ass. That entree is just sheer gastronomic apathy on the part of the chef. What self-respecting chef can let a plate like that even exist in the world. They might as well just throw a diaper on a plate. I can just see the scene in the kitchen:

CHEF: As a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, I have trained at some of the most esteemed restaurants in the world. I've worked my way from sous chef to Chef de Cuisine at some of the most important bistros in New York and I am now Executive Chef of a fine liberal arts college in Wisconsin. Tonight, I shall create the greatest entree of my culinary lifetime! And I shall call it... Turd on a Tortilla... no... The Turdtilla!

[The chef dumps a can of refried beans on a tostada, "dings" the order-up bell and walks into the bathroom, slamming the door.]

CHEF: [muffled] If anyone needs me, I'll be in here planning tomorrow's menu. [SFX: flush]

Friday, October 30, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats: Meal 039


10.29.15 Dinner

MR. Z.: So tonight Commons served gnocchi. And it was actually... GOOD. What the hell?! It was better than the gnocchi from the Italian place in town*, so... make of that what you will. I had two helpings of it, the second with tomato cream sauce that was much better than the pesto (gnocchi and pesto don't mix). Also, that turkey burger looked suspiciously like red meat, but I took a risk anyway and it was definitely turkey (and not bad, at that). It just looked... crusty and pink on the outside. Of course, I prevented the #CarbOverload with my daily greens.

This meal's color palette:


*First off, "the Italian place in town" is so awful that saying something is better than it is like saying gonorrhea is better than anal warts. It's like walking into a morgue for Italian decor and food that has simply lost its collective will to live. I'm fairly sure Jimmy Hoffa is buried in their soup and salad bar, beneath the inch-thick skin that was covering the macaroni, mashed potatoes and cod balls. That said, I'm glad Mr. Z enjoyed the gnocchi... twice. And washed it down with a burger (we might have been able to see some of that crusty pinkness reflected in the color palette had he parted the buns a bit). Still no pizza sightings -- he's either kicked his habit or he's secretly scoring slices on the mean streets of Beloit. Either way, I'm glad he's hopped upon the nightly salad bandwagon. I'm glad and so is his GI motility.

10.29.15 Dessert


Mr. Z.: Dessert bonus: red velvet cupcake with Oreo frosting. I'm not sure why Commons has been so on top of their dessert game lately, but I'm not complaining. Anything that lets me skip out on their geode cookies.

This dessert's color palette:


That does look good. And kudos to Mr. Z for not eating a second one with tomato cream sauce.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

What Mr. Z. Eats: Meal 038


10.28.15 Dessert

MR. Z.: I had this for dessert. It was labeled as a "Better Than Anything Cake." Naturally, I was skeptical, but then I ate it and... oh my god. It was probably the best cake I've ever had. It was perfectly moist, the frosting was distributed just the right amount, there were toffee chips on the top, and it was just... just heavenly, really. They need to serve this kind of quality dessert every day.

This meal's color palette:



I'm pretty sure that's the first time Mr. Z. has ever used the word "heavenly." The only other time he may have uttered it was when he saw first laid eyes on Luna Lovegood. Okay, chef, a challenge has been thrown down. You've got the boy riled up about your desserts -- let's see you put some of that energy into your entrees. I'm not saying that you should change the menu, mind you. I'm just suggesting that it might not be a bad idea to sprinkle some toffee chips on tomorrow's Tater Tot Pizza.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats: Meal 037


10.26.15 Dinner

MR. Z.: I decided to try to be (relatively) healthy tonight. No pizza all day. I mean, I got an ice cream bar later, but it's progress. Pasta with tomato pesto cream sauce, or something, then cauliflower and my daily greens. It was on fleek. Actually, no, it was like 8/10.

This meal's color palette:


Look at that plate! Look at that palette! It's happening -- Mr. Z is becoming a gastronome! Or a gastropod. Or maybe he just has gas. Maybe that's what "fleek" is. The point is, he didn't eat pizza for an entire day! This calls for a celebration! Pizza party?

Friday, October 23, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats: Meal 036


10.28.15 Lunch

MR. Z.: So, today was "Apple Fest" at Commons. That means exactly what you'd expect -- everything there had something to do with apples. Like, actually everything. Pictured here is (clockwise) a bagel with apples and raisins or something, apple encrusted chicken (which was REALLY good and I got lots more of it), an apple cider donut and apple flatbread with cheddar cheese. Then, of course, there's also the caramel apple and some apple juice (but then I later found out there was hot apple cider too, so I got that). And this was only Round 1 -- my friends and I all definitely went back for more. I feel like tonight I'll probably get Applerrhea, but it was entirely worth it.

This meal's color palette:


It's nice to see the kitchen mixing things up for a change. I can't wait to see what the chef whips up during December's "Pancreas Fest." (By the way, Mr. Z, I suggest laying down a tarp before hitting the hay tonight. Where there's apples, there's usually "apple sauce.")

Monday, October 19, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats: "Meal" 035


10.19.15 Dessert

MR. Z.: This is a "Cocoa Puff Treat" I got at Commons. It may or may not have actually been a coprolite.

This meal's color palette:


Yes, Mr. Z is back at school following an uneventful fall break at home. We filled him up with some fairly healthy victuals and now he's back at his home away from home, loading up on fossilized dino scat. It was great having him here for a week but it was also tough, because Miss O had school and the Old Lady and I had to work. He caught up on a lot of sleep and hung out in his room. It was familiar, yet different. He's growing up... and, to a certain extent, away. He talked a lot about how it was good to be home but that he really missed school and all of his friends. I guess this is how it happens -- the transition from kid to adult. Not too long ago, if he were on an overnight or a trip somewhere, he couldn't wait to get home. Now, after a few days, he's itching to get away. It sure sneaks up on you: one day your a fresh, steaming pile of dino poop and the next, you're a freakin' coprolite.

Monday, October 12, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats: Two Month Weigh-In

Mr. Z. is back home for a week for October break. It's great to have him around the house again and we're having a blast catching up on all of his adventures. I did notice that he's looking a might stouter than he did when we first dropped him off back in August, which should come as no surprise to anyone who's been following his college dining exploits. He decided to weigh himself to see just how much of an effect his all-pizza diet has had. The result? Well, you know phrase the "freshman 15," which refers to the amount of weight a first-year college student tends to gain during their first year of school? Guess who achieved the freshman 15 in seven weeks? (He always has been an overachiever.) Luckily he's started eating a salad with his dinners, or he'd have to start wearing Hammer pants. I think he's learned a few valuable lessons, however...


  1. Pizza is not a garnish and is a meal privilege, not a meal right.
  2. Fruits and vegetables are great colon motivators and can add some variation to any meal's color palette.
  3. Just because the cafeteria offers something called "Oreo pizza," it doesn't mean that a) they should, and 2) you should put it in your mouth.

Bleh. That thing looks like Jackie Gleason's diabetic foot from the movie "Nothing in Common."




Tuesday, October 06, 2015

What Mr. Z Eats: Meals 033 & 034


10.6.15 Lunch

MR. Z.: So for lunch I finally went to Java Joint and got a sack lunch with a couple of friends from class! An actual turkey sandwich, an apple, chips, chocolate milk, string cheese, and Scooby-Doo fruit snacks. Probably the most real lunch I've had yet -- it was better than anything I ate all through high school.

This meal's color palette:


String cheese and Scooby-Doo fruit snacks? They really do put the "joint" in Java Joint. That is a solid lunch, though. I've been trying to get Mr. Z to check out the alternative dining offerings on campus since he's gotten there. I'm glad it finally paid off. All that was missing from that lunch sack was a toy.

10.6.15 Dinner


MR. Z.: Dinner... let's just say that Commons had a "chicken fajita pizza" on display and, yes, I got it (of course, with the token slice of cheese pizza, too), and yes, I'm ready for the incoming bowelsplosion. The rest of the meal was fine, too.

This meal's color palette:


Aaaaand we're back to the pizza. I sharted just looking at that plate. Two slices of "fajita pizza," which I'm pretty sure is not even a thing, a slice of cheese pizza, a mound of pasta with either alfredo sauce or Miracle Whip... or both, a salad and a glass of chocolate milk. Not that he has to worry about it at this point in his life but what could the fat content possibly be in this meal? He's basically assembled a deconstructed version of one of those Domino's bread bowl pasta monstrosities. I know for a fact that we're going to get a bill at the end of the semester for a minimum of three scorched toilets. Right now, this undigestible mass is lumbering through his colon and those adorable Scooby-Doo fruit snacks are so terrified at its approaching brutality that they're melting like that Nazi from Raiders of the Lost Ark.