Reflecting on meal times
By HOWARD LINDQUIST, Special to the Daily Globe
HERON LAKE — The traditional uses of the names for meals are still practiced here.
At noon, we eat dinner, not lunch. Somehow, there developed a class of people who did little or no physical work by the time the noon meal came around, and then called their meal lunch. They had not worked hard enough by noon to build up an appetite for a real meal.
So now, they apply the word “dinner” to the evening meal. So, when someone says, “Let’s have dinner together tonight,” they might be talking about what we used to call supper.
I am not so much aware of this practice as I used to be. It may be not infecting the population as much as I used to think it did.
I once sat and listened to a dentist and lawyer brag about how little they needed to eat for dinner (the noon meal). I said them, “If you worked a little harder during the morning hours, maybe you would have a bigger appetite to eat a decent meal at noon.” They looked at me for a moment, and then talked in a lower tone and left the café soon. I felt a little foolish, but then, why should I?
When I hear such talk, I sometimes think of my mother, who worked fairly hard for a few years cleaning hospital rooms in order to save money. Money that she felt she would need to pay future medical bills.
Howard Lindquist lives at Lakeview Assisted Living in Heron Lake and grew up in Douglas County.