Aladdin Diakun (2L)
Another year in law school means another year of finding things to complain about and take too seriously. It also means another year of meals from our favourite sponsored café. A few rambling jokes appear to have coalesced into the conviction that UV needs a food column of indeterminate tone and purpose, so consider this my inaugural column.
It’s been awhile since I last visited Goodmans. The first year is often tough for any new food joint, so I was curious to see how the place is faring. I recall some growing pains from the early days, including a rather unconventional launch. Excited passers-by noticed a humble plaque, indicating that, eventually, something would be built, certainly no later than the end of O-Week 2016. A year later, there’s no shortage of young students lined up to accrue debt in Jackman, which is, by all official accounts, at least a superficial sign of success.
I suppose I could lead by saying something about the integrity of operating for-profit (as far as I can tell) when a large proportion of your customer base is literally living off of credit cards for three years. Perhaps the school could drive prices down towards the poverty line that some of us have toiled under by offering sponsorship opportunities on individual croissants and coffees, handed out in secular Communion by the CDO, helping us to fully internalize the Bay Street Spirit. However, if there’s one thing U of T Law has taught me, it’s to keep ethics discussions contained in the classroom where they belong—no need to worry about such trifles as tuition and financial aid when there are pastries to be had!
In any case, what might have instead been named the Debtor’s Deli offers a variety of goods that could give even the perpetually carb-loading Yak a run for his snacks. Standing in line, I notice one particular standout, which I’ll spotlight today.
The Spinach, Egg, and Feta wrap features spinach, egg, and feta in a low-profile wrap. It’s a little watery, but no more so than the eyes of a 1L upon receiving their first LRW grade. Grab a few napkins for the wrap and you’ll be fine, unless you’re accustomed to people cleaning up after you, in which case, by all means, scatter your leavings on the closest table, floor, chair, or desk. If you do decide to try one, be sure to order carefully, as it’s not easily distinguished from the similarly named, but utterly distinct, “Spinach and Feta”—one of a number of offerings that seems to have been stripped of its core identity upon entering the law school.
Where the other fast-breaking options seem to boil down to “sweet carbs or savoury carbs,” the wrap acquits itself well. Featuring an actual protein source and some greens, the wrap precludes a sugar crash and offers the dim possibility of staying awake in the windowless, still-aired, and overheated basement classrooms in which knowledge and critical thinking skills are ostensibly transmitted, as unidirectionally as possible, defying all evidence-based research into how human beings actually learn. The wrap has everything you want in a wrap. It is a wrap. It is fresh, tasty, and healthy. It will be lightly grilled for a satisfying crunch unless you refuse when asked (don’t). It’s possible that it even sets U of T apart from other schools.
However, sure to ignite a flame war on somebody’s “Class of 20__” page this year is the presence of cilantro, an insidious herb that lurks unannounced in the pico de gallo. If you aren’t sufficiently #Woke, you may not realize that cilantro tastes like #Soap to approximately half of the population, who, under the current breakfast regime, are being discriminated against on the basis of their genetic makeup. Probably. More or less. I don’t mind cilantro myself, but privilege is like an invisible spice rack that you carry around with you. Unpack that shit. Nobody should have to struggle for tasty, healthy, affordable food.
Stay tuned for next month’s column, Pizza: Why get it for free when you can pay for it? Putting Goodmans to the test against its “no-cost” competitors.