My bread is black. Everyone else’s is white. Theirs is generously lathered with peanut butter and jelly. Mine is open face, revealing butcher-cut meat, fresh greens and Russian spicy mustard. My dessert is a fig. It looks like a turd. I couldn’t be more embarrassed.
My New York City public school lunchroom is institutional. In this concrete prison, bartering goods accrues you status. But today, no one wants to trade lunch with me. They don’t even know what a fig is. Given how our city separates its kids from means of production, I wouldn’t be surprised if they had forgotten that their cheese came from a cow.