Trayless Cafeterias

August 25, 2008

Colleges are going trayless.

At least at some colleges.  The Associated Press reports that West Virginia’s Glenville State College has eliminated all cafeteria trays in an attempt to conserve.  Colleges in Georgia and North Carolina, two drought-stricken states, are doing it to reduce water consumption.  Some college studies are finding that in addition to saving water and energy a side benefit is that it reduces food waste:  Students don’t/can’t stack up food while holding a plate like they can when they’re holding a tray; and maybe it’ll help fight the Freshman 15 to boot.

Cafeteria trays were very popular when I was in college, but not because they carried our food.

They were popular because they carried our asses down a small hill next to the Freshman dormitories, during the winter months when we needed a diversion from studying Differential Equations or any myriad number of engineering courses.  Those slick-bottomed trays didn’t take long to ice over the hill, which tended to make it all the more dangerous – and fun.

We learned physics (at least, acceleration and generally rapid deceleration) on cafeteria trays.