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Repast Past

Steak Holders

Illustration: Mitzi Akaha

By Christopher J. Kemper

Flank steak Friday was my intersection of college and the culinary. Each spring, at the end of the week, Chef Di would fire up the brick, charcoal barbecue on the front patio of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon house. I swear I could smell the first ember from inside Meyer Library. I would pack my things and speed-walk uphill to the house, motored by gluttony.

Brothers and friends would have gathered to enjoy the sun and the sand volleyball. The air was filled with chatter about the school week that had ended and social opportunities of the weekend to come. We feasted like kings: This ritual was singularly responsible for my Sophomore 8, Junior 6 and Senior 7.

The realities that constrict discretionary spending under every American roof not occupied by Congress required us to endure hot dog soup each Tuesday to balance our budget. But like the perfect summer day in my beloved Oregon that burns away eight gray and inclement months, Flank Steak Friday sizzled away any lingering memory of Wiener Midweek.


Christopher J. Kemper, '91, is a business consultant in Portland, Ore.

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