Oatmeal? Soup. Cereal? Soup. Yogurt? Soup.

Hey dweebs, have you even thought about soup lately? Have you given a single moment of your brain’s time to liquid dinner? Soup is more important than 10th week. Soup is more important than finals. Soup is more important than graduation and the ensuing weeks of sadness brought by letters upon letters of rejection.

College graduation season is upon us, which means that a bunch of famous losers are going to give thousands of speeches beginning with the Merriam-Webster dictionary definition of success, learning and insurmountable debt. Keeping with the season, I have another definition for all you soup-slurping elitist jerks out there:

Soup \süp\ n 1: Oatmeal. 2: Cereal. 3: Yogurt.

“But Dan,” you geeks are probably mumbling, “this is just too far. I was totally on board for your onion take but this is just absurd.”

First of all, thank you very much for your support in my war on onion frivolity. Secondly, I am fully aware of the intensity of this opinion. But as a card-carrying Knower of Things, I think I am qualified to declare the soup stature of these dishes.

Try to keep up, you soup-discriminating goobers. Let us begin with oatmeal, the indisputable regent of breakfast sludge. After extensive research in Andrew Commons, I have learned that oatmeal is primarily made from oats and the paste produced when trees are turned to pulp. Regardless of its ingredients, however, the basic premise of oatmeal remains the same: a thick liquid, containing a bunch of smaller, saturated solids. This would normally be the “snap fingers and wink at the jury” moment of my closing argument, but I will continue further for those of you who are not yet convinced. (Yes, I have argued this point in court before. Several times, in fact, but that is beside the point.)

I normally disavow all dictionaries, but I have put aside my disgust with Merriam-Webster for the sake of this point and this point alone. Those preening nerds have defined soup as “a liquid food esp. with a meat, fish or vegetable stock as a base and often containing pieces of solid food” OR “something having or suggesting the consistency or nutrient qualities of soup.”

“Ha! You have already outed yourself as a fraudulent fact-friendo, dear Dan,” you might be saying like the doofus you are. “Oats are not vegetables, they are grasses or something else stupid like that!”

Here we come to Section 1A of my argument: all things grown in nature that are not fruits should be considered vegetables. As the most seizure-prone member of the Lawrentian Op-Ed section, I believe that I have the power to make it so.

I have made it so. All grasses are now vegetables. Boom, vegetable base and ingredients. Boom, oatmeal is soup. On to the next one: cereal.

Ah, my sheriffs of soup! My barons of bisque! My captains of chowder! My saviors of stew and presidents of porridge, I ask you: what is dairy? Seriously, what is dairy’s motley crew of nipple byproducts that have found such a strong foothold in our daily nutritional habits? Collected members of the jury (again, this is not the first time I have made this argument), milk is something produced in the body. Milk has protein. Milk is primarily a liquid, but can be transformed into a solid. Allow me to present another protein-laden product of the body which can be found in either solid or liquid form: meat. Let me say it once more in case the yarn has not yet connected to the other pushpin on the corkboard for you: milk is meat. Therefore, cereal has a meat base and solid food contained within. Ergo, cereal is soup. (For those of you who contend that cereal is salad with excessive dressing, I would remind you that most cereal does not contain lettuce. All dressing-based salads contain lettuce and any dressing-dependent salad that does not is nothing more than trash that wriggled its way free of the can. Bad salad, bad decision, bad you.)

You know that I have one last point, dingus. (As you can probably guess, I still have not defeated the curse-goblin beneath Warch, thus requiring me to limit all my insults to PG dubs.)

Yogurt—of any variety—is soup. I have no plan to reiterate my milk is meat point again, but you can probably guess how this argument goes. I do not even need to bring in the secondary definition of soup that includes anything “suggesting the consistency of soup.” Yogurt is rotten meat soup, but even rotten meat soup is better than borscht.

I would like to make a brief aside here to personally call out one Lawrence student and lover of borscht. Luke Honeck, your taste in soup is deplorable. I enjoyed rooming together last year and look forward to sharing a quad, but your opinions on what constitutes good soup are the worst.

There is little more to be said about yogurt’s soupish status that I have not already mentioned with cereal and oatmeal. Instead, I would like to make a plea to the product designers at Campbell’s and whatever other soup manufacturers there are besides the makers of the Italian Man on the Can: take a page from Go-Gurt’s book and make all soup to go. I am aware that Campbell’s already does something like this with its little cans-to-go product, but that is not the portable soup I am describing. I want piping hot soup contained in a plastic tube, capable of searing the inside of my mouth every time I consume it. A day that does not include me scalding my tooth-chamber is a day wasted.

Have I said soup often enough to make the word lose its meaning? If I have failed to do so by now, I would refer you to the April 1 issue of the Lawrentian tastefully titled “Soup.” Rather than stressing about finals and your looming years of unemployment, let your mind go blank. Eat a bowl of oatmeal in the morning, a vat of yogurt in the early afternoon and a bathtubful of cereal at midnight. When you find yourself staring down at an empty blue book during finals week, write “soup” over and over until your pen or pencil snaps and the pages resemble those drawings from The Ring. Howl “soup” at the moon and free your mind of any other facts and information.

Oatmeal is soup. Cereal is soup. Yogurt is soup. Have a good summer, soup goofs.

Dan Meyer


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