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Katherine McCabe / Gavel Media

Diatribe: Can we cook? Yes we can!

The Gavel's Diatribe acts as the satirical medium for short rants over topics ranging from complete triviality to utmost importance.

A new herd of doe-eyed juniors full of optimism and hope for their new adventure have entered into the realm of off-campus living, and have encountered a mysterious and time-old trade: feeding themselves. Who knew that the breakfast potatoes that sustained us for the last two years required chopping potatoes, adding a mixture of spices, and using an oven?

As the move-in weekend came to a close and we hugged our parents goodbye, the pangs of hunger started to roll in as eating out on our parents' dime became a figment of our imaginations. Consequently, we wearily entered our kitchens and surveyed the hodgepodge of kitchen equipment, including the arrays of plastic dining sets from Target we had all accumulated our freshman year, wondering what it all meant.

Staring into our freezers full of Trader Joe’s meals and our pantries full of boxes and boxes of pasta, we racked our brains for what obstacles had held us back from creating something out of nothing before slowly coming to realize it was ourselves all along. We’ve grudgingly learned to do our own laundry and wake ourselves up with alarms instead of relying on our parents, yet somehow cooking for one slipped through the cracks.

Even if we decide to be adventurous and follow an online recipe gifted to us from our all-too accurate Tik Tok algorithm (I swear it saw us withering away), there’s a pretty small chance the kitchen has any measuring cups or tablespoon sets, unless your token Massachusetts dwelling roommate had a spare at home.

And on the off chance, this recipe somehow comes together, you’ll be greeted by a chorus of oohs and ahhs from the peanut gallery. Your hungry roommates wander out of their rooms following the wafting smell of the first home-cooked meal in weeks.

While we all dream of living out our Ratatouille fantasies—except with our friendly neighborhood raccoon—I believe that deep down, the cooking gene lies within us all. Think of it this way: we all need a special skill to add to our resumes, and being proficient in Microsoft Office is getting lonely!

So when the Cleveland Circle Chipotle employees start greeting you by name and you start asking for "my regular" at Pelon, ask yourself this: would using the kitchen I pay rent for really be that hard?

I believe that if we come together as an off-campus community and share the trials and tribulations we have encountered through our kitchens, the fear will fall away. And maybe one day we will live in a world where we eat a vegetable that wasn’t part of frozen fried rice or create a meal with more than one ingredient.

Sure, our stoves may set off the fire alarm for absolutely no reason and our fridges might have smelled weird from the moment we moved in, but if we come together as a community, we can conquer our sketchy kitchens and become not just the leaders of tomorrow but something even more impressive: functioning adults capable of cooking for themselves.

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