Alack, I long for the advertised 24/7 dining hall. Image: Hailey Otten/Fulcrum.
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Forced intermittent fasting?

Early to bed and early to rise makes Johnny a dull boy. Who wants to be dull? Not me!

No matter how many “That Girl” TikToks you watch, the urge to pull an all-nighter will never diminish. At least for me, I find 6 a.m. walks infinitely less fun than eating Froot Loops at midnight. To be sure, one of these is worse for you than the other, but that’s beside the point. I mourn my inability to experience this unhealthy ritual.

Alack, I long for the advertised 24/7 dining hall. I spoke to a first-year (who prefered to remain unnamed), and he fully went through the five stages of grief when I informed him of the dining hall’s new hours. He was in shock, then angry, then finally got very quiet and accepted his fate. Before I told him, he was under the impression that the dining hall would indeed be open 24 hours a day. This is a fuzzy area, as different open times are advertised on different parts of the U of O’s website. If you Google “dining hall uottawa” the correct hours show up —for reference, these are 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. However, when you purchase a meal plan on the U of O  student card web page, the incorrect 24/7 hours are displayed. 

When asked about the reduced hours, the unofficial response is staffing issues. A representative I spoke to told me that many employees had quit as a result of the pandemic’s stress and were having trouble finding replacements. Understandable. When I got lunch, it took my server three whole minutes to add six ingredients (chicken, rice, lettuce, sour cream, guacamole, and salsa) to my two tacos. I am allowed to complain because I spent three summers working at a taco stand. You don’t have to be a taco specialist like myself to add pre-made ingredients to a taco within a reasonable time frame. By the time I received my nourishment, I was practically foaming at the mouth.

On a positive note, they must be making some staffing progress because the hours have been extended by 2 hours at night. Last year the dining hall closed at 9 p.m., not 11 p.m. Additionally, the salad and yogurt bars have reopened, and the magic Pepsi touch screen soda machines are no longer out of order. 

It could be better, it could be worse.