Tuesday, January 18, 2011

No Prescriptions For School Lunches

September 1966
  Pharmacist Tom Hunter of Hunter Drugs wishes to announce that he does NOT plan the school lunch menus, nor does he ever intend to plan them!
  Tom may know a great deal about whipping together recipes for soothing baby rash or compounds for delivering us from near-death experiences. But he does not admit to deciding whether the student body of Rochester School District will be having hot dogs with buttered beans on Monday or pineapple-cabbage salad on Tuesday.
  He had to announce his firm position this week after several citizens requested to talk to him about the food served in the school cafeterias.
  TOM GOT INTO this position simply by deciding this year to sponsor the school menu which appears each week in The Clarion. By sponsoring it, he helps pay for the advertising space the menu occupies on the page. Since just about every parent and their school child is interested in what is being served in the cafeterias, the plug for Hunter’s prescriptions alongside the menu is a valuable little advertising spot.
  It’s the school dietician who plans the menus a month in advance and sends one copy to The Clarion. We simply set it in type and place it in the ad. As a result, Tom has no idea of what the menu will be each week before it appears in the newspaper. Even if he decided to change the hot dogs on the copy to pork chops, the kids will still end up with hot dogs.
  IT WAS THREE weeks ago that a citizen came into the store on a weekend and wanted to know what was on the lunch menu for the following Monday. Tom couldn’t supply the answer off the top of his head, of course, and he happened to be sold out of newspapers from his news rack, so couldn’t look it up. The citizen became irate, feeling that Tom should not publish the menu if he doesn’t know what’s in it.
  Tom later received a phone call from another woman who claimed she represented a “Parents for Better School Lunches” (or words to that effect.) She wanted to get together with the druggist to see what could be done to improve the lunches. Tom thought she was putting him on,. She replied that she was not joking. Tom explained the situation. Somehow, he had the feeling that he didn’t get through to her.
  WHILE WRITING THIS, I checked the copy for the menu that will be printed this Thursday's issue announcing next week’s menu. I noticed that green beans are schedule one day and waxed beans the next. Beans two days in a row?
I’m going right over and see Tom about that!