So your roommate has worse hygiene than an average cockroach. Calm down, it won’t kill you. So you might fail a few classes. Calm down, it won’t kill you. So you’re down to five Dining Points and might starve–oh, wait, that might actually kill you.
Dangerously Low Dining Points, or DLDP, is a common condition among college students. While not curable, DLDP is perfectly manageable. For your health and safety, The Black Sheep has outlined the five stages of DLDP and provided some treatment suggestions. (Disclaimer: The Black Sheep is totally unqualified as a healthcare provider and not covered under Obamacare. But for a small fee we will provide excuse notes for missed classes.)
Stage One: Denial
It’s come to your attention that you’re a bit behind on points. Your first instinct will be to pretend that all is well and hit Adele’s, burying your troubles in ice cream and brownies. Elaborate lies will enable your reckless behavior. I’ll eat less next week. I’ll go home and bring food back with me. Maybe the diner will magically become healthier and more affordable. (The first two thoughts are ordinary symptoms of DLDP. The last one often signifies the onset of true psychosis, we advise that you either see a shrink or slap yourself in the face. Hard.)
Phase Two: Anger
Given that the dining plan costs roughly twice as much as cooking for yourself, it can be a bit hard to accept your DLDP calmly and rationally. Seriously? I spend the semester eating chicken tenders and quesadillas and I’m left with this? It doesn’t help when your friends inexplicably have way too many points. People who complain about their extra points are like skinny models complaining that it’s impossible to buy jeans–you hate them, but you also want to be them.
Phase Three: Bargaining
All right. If I give you my lecture notes, write your essays, and have sex with you, will you buy food for me? One of the most troubling stages of DLDP, bargaining often reveals just how far people are willing to go for food. While a certain amount of bartering for dining points is normal, extreme cases of the bargaining stage often find students holding cardboard signs that say “Will Write Essay for Fries.”
Phase Four: Depression
The full implications of your DLDP have hit you; no more ice cream for the rest of the semester! You find yourself eating ramen every night and pondering the futility of it all. You have trouble getting up in the morning, and not just for your 8 a.m.’s. Your stomach is constantly in knots and the future looks bleak. You can’t believe that diner food left such a giant hole in your life and wish you could tell it just how much it means to you.
Phase Five: Acceptance
Wait a minute, this means I have an excuse to eat out! Ah, the sweet taste of freedom! Sure, you’re paying out of pocket, but at least trips to Chipotle, Nando’s, and Noodles&Company are somewhat justified. It dawns on you that DLDP has changed your lifestyle, but it hasn’t changed you–embracing the condition and moving forward will leave you wiser, happier, and more fulfilled. Not to mention full. Real food never tasted so good.