Eating Away At Your Mind

Within minutes, complaints and mutterings ran around the room, two plastic bowls of soup hit the deck, and the floor turned into a mud wrestlers pit. Sidney fled for the mop bucket, and the patients launched into their daily litany:
“I didn’t order this!”
“What’s that?”
“Where’s the butter?”
“Where’s the orange juice?”
“He’s wet himself. Take him out!”
“I’ve got too much!”
“I want a cigarette now!”
“I’m not eating that. …Crash!”
As usual, the noise rose to a crescendo and then gradually reduced as the patients had their precise needs met in tailor-made fashion. It was the brutal truth that tolerance, manners, moderation and consideration for others were completely absent amongst the residents, and I despaired when I thought how many thousands of times we had asked them to say a simple “please” or “thank you” for the assistance they were receiving. The problem ran deep, because their ingratitude was the result of being fundamentally incapable of grasping where the food, drink, shelter, and money in their lives was coming from, and how much effort went into its provision. Being cut off from reality in the politically correct bubble of the unit, they had little experience or conception of how food was produced and prepared, or of how hard some people were having to work in the community to pay for it……


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