Late night food: hard to access, but a necessity for college students.
The midnight munchies can get so bad that that many students are even desperate enough to part with large quantities of cash or walk several miles to satisfy their emergency late-night cravings. Some people will go even further than that to get their hands on their desired gourmet. Some people will even shave their heads for it.
Two years ago, at 1 a.m., my roommate Will Collins and I were up finishing homework in our dorm room in South Hall. We were both getting ready to call it a night when Will suddenly turned to face me from his desk across the room.
“Dude, I’m hungry,” he said. “Like, really hungry. Think the drive-through at Wendy’s is still open?”
I remembered seeing an advertisement for their drive-through. I was pretty sure that it was open until 2 a.m., but we had a much larger problem: neither of us had a car.
After a brief debate about the possibility of walking down Route 3 to the nearest Wendy’s, we remembered that our friend Brad had a car.
Knocking on the door across the hall, we found that Brad was in the room and awake. Will tried desperately to convince Brad to drive him to Wendy’s, but he refused, as he had been drinking earlier.
Will, still starving, asked him about the possibility of borrowing his car.
“Sorry, man,” said Brad. “I don’t like to let other people drive my car. If they got into an accident with it, my parents would kill me.”
Refusing to face the fact that there might not be a Wendy’s Frosty in his future, Will offered numerous bribes to change Brad’s mind. Nothing worked – until Will made one last desperate plea.
“Look, I’m dying here, I’ll do anything,” Will said. “Man, I’d shave my head for some Wendy’s.”
There was dead silence in the room, as everyone stared at my roommate, wide-eyed.
“I was kind of kidding guys,” said Will as he fixed his shaggy, dark-brown hair.
Brad grinned evilly at Will from his futon.
“How badly do you want that Wendy’s?” he asked.
The next thing we knew, Will was leaning his head over a sink, while Brad sheared thick chunks of hair off of his scalp with an electric razor.
“I can’t believe I’m doing this,” Will repeated between each loud buzz of the razor.
After the shaving was complete, Will felt his now-bald head as he stared into the mirror.
“Least-responsible decision ever,” he said.
Brad finally allowed us to drive his car, so the three of us headed out to the Wendy’s on Route 3. The restaurant looked empty, but we pulled around to the drive-through anyways.
The lights were all off. They were closed.
I looked behind me to see Will with his face buried in his hands as the moonlight reflected off his shiny bald head.
“Damn it! Now where are we supposed to go?” he yelled.
“Wawa is across the street,” Brad said. “It’s not exactly Wendy’s, but they’re open 24 hours, right?”
“Screw it,” Will said, “Let’s go!”
We passed through the traffic light and pulled into the Wawa parking lot. Will quickly exited the vehicle and ran inside.
Brad and I followed, eager to see what he had selected to satisfy his hunger. Maybe a two-foot sub, or a family-sized bag of potato chips with a two-liter bottle of soda? Or maybe four hotdogs and a giant tub of ice cream?
No. My roommate shaved his head for two dollars-worth of food – a soft pretzel and a 20-ounce bottle of Pepsi.
“Dude, are you serious?” Brad exclaimed, as Will stuffed the pretzel into his mouth. “You’re starving and all you’re getting is a damn pretzel and soda?”
“I’m hungry, I don’t really care,” Will said with his mouth full of pretzel.
Brad looked back at him, laughing.
“Seriously, that would be like a guy on death-row asking for a potato chip for his last meal,” he said.
It took some guts to shave off all that hair for such a meager meal, but I guess desperate times call for desperate measures.
“Hey, I’ll drive you tomorrow when Wendy’s is open if you let me shave your eyebrows too,” Brad said.
“Um, no,” Will responded.