Good morning, Miami. It’s time for a short story.

Once upon a time, in a not so far away place, a slice of happiness stood on Maple Street. The go-to stop for lunch and dinner, promising a variety of breads, cheeses, vegetables and sauces, available everyday. Students lined up for make-your-own sandwiches and an array of chips and drinks. Customers filled the inside tables in the winter and spilled out onto the sidewalk when the sunshine returned. The prices were fair, the service efficient and the food delicious.

There’s no happily ever after to this story, however, because this haven of happiness — better known as the sandwich shop Delish — has vanished. The beginning of a new school year always brings new changes, like Minnich and Scott Hall opening after months of renovation. Those changes make sense. Others just don’t.

I sighed when Starbucks moved to North Quad. It’s a bit of a hike now, but we know the most dedicated customers will power through for that pumpkin spice latte. For those less dedicated, maybe the relocation is helpful. Being able to use declining balance for Starbucks is, plainly put, dangerous.

But sandwiches… guys come on.

We need club sandwiches a lot more than we need iced mochas, yet the Starbucks is still on campus. I’m not saying people don’t do this (most of us probably do from time to time), but a vanilla latte doesn’t fit the definition of a meal. Trust me, I checked.

Delish’s replacement is Maple Dining Hall (the expanded version). I expected some pretty major changes, something to justify the removal of three other small restaurants including Delish, and I couldn’t seem to find much. Sure, there’s more chairs and arguably more of the same type of food, but that’s not earth-shattering.

Sometimes it feels like when Delish disappeared, all the sandwiches on campus skipped town. I’ve heard Western has sandwiches during lunch, sometimes. It’s baffling to me how steaming slices of pizza glint under the cases at every dining hall, yet finding a sandwich with lettuce, tomato or mayonnaise proves an impossible task. One of my friends asked where the Maple panini press traveled to, and the answer was “it’s in the basement.” Myself and a large group of students are wondering why.

If cost is an issue, then why not charge students a meal swipe at locations currently using declining balance, considering it costs around $12 a swipe at dining halls anway?

The healthier food argument doesn’t really present an issue either. Buffalo chicken pizza with ranch dressing drizzled on top definitely has more calories than a turkey sandwich. Plus, healthy options means including meal options that the majority of the population will want to eat. We’re talking sandwiches and wraps, well-liked items, not quinoa or bran muffins that only a select group appreciate.

Though we could mourn the loss, after a while I realized that until Delish returns (if it does), we’ve got to work with what we’ve got. But sometimes, we’ve got to implement some serious creativity to make the available food appetizing. In the dining hall world of heavily salted food, chalky vegan chocolate cake and lots of pizza slices, this can prove challenging.

I want Miami to return our beloved Delish. It can be relocated to Armstrong or where McCracken Market used to be, two of the most central locations on campus, and all of Oxford will be a little happier than it was before.

There’s no happy ending to this story until it returns. So for now, the end.

dattilec@miamioh.edu

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