Whenever April 20th rolls around, I find myself with a bad case of the munchies—especially when I’m at Wesleyan. It’s hard to understand, but it just happens that way; I’m pretty hungry most other days of the year too, but 4/20 just sends my stomach and bowels into oblivion.

When I woke up a mere five days ago (and after engaging in a few, maybe just one specific activity), I was at a crossroads: Where am I going to eat my first and most important meal of the day? The hunger that was beginning to possess my body. I was becoming so ravenous that a tiny Story and Soil sandwich wasn’t going to cut it, nor was I going to settle for a mundane Usdan lunch. Indeed, it was time to pull out the special card, only to be used on special days. Using my full body force to roll over, I leaned over towards my friend and said: “We’re going to Sarah’s.”

Sunglasses were placed over our eyes, the car engine was started, and we sped over the bridge into Portland, CT. Upon arrival, I drained a full glass of water; my mouth was incredibly sticky from the piece of gum I had been chewing. After some deliberation, my eating partner and I settled on the best course of action: we would share waffles (with chocolate chips, bananas, AND berries) and a veggie scramble (add cheddar and bacon). The kind waitress was beginning to give us a few odd glances at this point. 

Fast-forward two hours: I’m lying face down on my bed with Twitter sitting inches away, praying that my watch slows down so I can finish the bag of spicy-hot Cheetos before my 2:50. I lift only my head up every few seconds to shove another handful of those crunchy red devils down my throat, wiping the excess dust shamelessly on my sheets. The remains of the savory, bright, loaded scramble sit in my stomach, churning around with the incoming Cheetos and the digested pieces of tender, perfectly sweet waffles. I start to plan out my bathroom break that I’ll need to take during my English class, and then, obviously, begin to think about what I want for dinner.

I slog ever-so-slowly through my class, eagerly awaiting the unspecified event that will soon come exactly at 4:20, and onwards, until my stomach has ballooned to a point where I get carried away by the wind like Aunt Marge. The glorious moment comes and goes, and I face yet another crossroads: Swings…or Star and Crescent. It’s a difficult choice for me. On the one hand, I know that Chef Hannah Godwin-Pierce ’22 has flair and style, and can put together some pretty classy dishes and condiments. The idea of her all-you-can-eat yakisoba/mac and cheese bar made my mouth water with such fervor that I almost dropped the…well, never mind. Yet, there is always Swings, good ol’ Swings, that can deliver you a whopping 4/20 punch that may literally knock you unconscious. 

The 4/20 Swings pail is infamous, for some good reasons, and for some not so good ones too. It contains all the most delicious food groups (from healthiest to unhealthiest): avocado, pulled pork, chicken, fried chicken, fried ravioli, fries, and something else fried, and then you start to lose track of what you are even eating. The most risqué individuals cover the whole thing in gravy. The hard part of the pail is the aftermath…you usually have to allocate at least 2 hours for toilet time throughout the ensuing night. For this very reason, and because I was already feeling a bit packed up, I chose Star and Crescent, hoping that the portions would be sizable, but not obscene.

What I didn’t anticipate was the serve-yourself aspect of the operation. I blacked out upon entering Alpha Delta Phi, and when I emerged back into the sunlight, my mac and cheese was drenched in so much chili that I couldn’t even see the pasta. To be frank, the blackout basically continued until I finished my night class at 9:20. What I remember is brief, but impactful: The pieces of hot dog that found their way into the mac and cheese sauce, the Cheetos I sprinkled on top for decoration, and the mysterious white patties that appeared amongst the chili, tasted like glue, and made their way into my stomach nonetheless.

After my class I was nowhere near hungry, yet somehow I found myself in the aisles of Wes Shop. Honey-mustard pretzels found their way into my backpack, as did microwavable popcorn. During debatably my most shameful hour, I ate the entirety of the bag of pretzels in five minutes (only one of which wasn’t on the way back from Wes Shop), and “shared” my popcorn with a few friends. It feels fitting to end the story on this downtrodden note, since that’s how my day ended. I lay on my back trying to fall asleep, while my stomach rumbled beneath me. Oh, my poor toilet….

Lewis Woloch can be reached at lwoloch@wesleyan.edu.

Comments are closed