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Letters to Nowhere

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Lunch Lady Mafia

Yesterday my son brought home a letter from his elementary school cafeteria.

"Your child currently has a balance of $1.25 in the school cafeteria. Please pay this balance immediately."

Niiiice.. This is the first time I've ever gotten a collection letter for a buck. No big deal. I called the sitter and told her we'd gotten a letter. She replied she'd write a check for his months lunch and I could pick it up in the morning. It's an arrangement we've had for 2 years. I pay her a flat fee. She writes a check every month to cover his lunches, picks him up from school etc.

So... This morning.. While I'm still sleeping.. the phone rings... Did I mention it wasn't even 7 a.m. yet? Who the hell is calling me this time of morning? Hello, I answer groggily.

Her: Mrs Clover? This is Po-Dunk Elementary calling.

Me: Yes, what time is it?

Her: It's.. uh.. 6:55. Are you aware your child has a balance in the lunch room? If it's not paid we will not feed him a hot lunch today. He'll only get an apple, a peanut butter sandwich on white bread and a carton of plain milk.

Me: Did you say 6:55 am?

Her: Yes ma'am.

Me: You do realize you only just sent the note home yesterday?

Her: Yes ma'am.

Me: So.. You're calling me at 6 in the morning why?

Her: To make sure you will pay this balance.

Me: Look lady, even the Mafia gives you 24 hours to pay a debt. And for the record, my son would be quite happy.. thrilled even.. to eat a peanut butter sandwich compared to some of your food. Goodbye.

One frekin dollar. A buck! I was woken up by the Hairnet Cartel for a dollar.


  • On the first day of school in September, I used to send a check in with my son for all of his lunches for every school day up until the Christmas break.

    One year, I computed 74 school days at $1.35 a day to be $99.90 and that's the amount of the check I wrote.

    Unbeknownst to me, lunches had gone up a nickel. Two days into the school year, I got a call from the "lunch lady" telling me that they were unsure as to my intentions with the check. I told them that it should cover my son's lunches until the Christmas break -- the lady told me that lunches had gone up, and that the amount I wrote was insufficient to last as long as I intended (it would fall THREE lunches short).

    I told her I'd deal with it when the time comes.

    Long story short, they called once a week for the next 4 or 5 weeks, fretting over that amount, as it didn't come out EVENLY.

    Finally tired of the BS, I told my son to buy himself an ice-cream for the next two days (at $.25 each) so that the stupid amount would come out "evenly."

    He came home the next day telling me that he was told he couldn't use his pre-paid lunch monies to buy anything other than lunch.


    I finally told them to stop calling me until such time as my son was running low on funds. When that happened in the second week of December, the lunch goombas called me EVERY DAY until I sent my son in with a buck.

    Then I called them every day that week telling them they owed me a dime.


    By Blogger Pat, at 9:43 AM  

  • OMG YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!!! I am floored as much by Red's story as pat's...wtf..don't these ppl have lives and better things to do...the time taken bitching over a buck could be way better used by being cordial and understanding and teaching kids that patience is a virtue. SHEESH
    I feel so fortunate that my daughter's elementary school had no cafeteria and she brought her lunch and now in highschool she is close enough to come home for lunch.

    By Blogger moon, at 12:30 PM  

  • I cant say anything, I ran up a lunch bill for 90 bucks and all i ever remember having was orange juice.

    By Blogger Amanda, at 8:06 PM  

  • Hairnet Cartel...lol!

    By Blogger Latin Lover, at 9:10 PM  

  • LOL! The school system must be threatening these lunch room ladies with getting the ax if they don't collect! -Flourish

    By Blogger Flourish & Blotts, at 9:41 AM  

  • Kids get credit there? School lunch here is cash on a daily basis

    By Anonymous mellowyellow, at 6:57 AM  

  • There's a lot to be said for brown bagging it! I can't believe how petty those dinner ladies are!

    By Anonymous Justsue, at 1:35 PM  

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