We Don’t Need No Education (aka Another Brick in the Pit)

According to an incredibly uninformative (seriously, check it out) Associated Press article, “Students at an elementary school in the Kansas City School District are collaborating on a DVD and book on the life of barbecue legend Ollie Gates.”  Though the article provides no more information on this collaboration, it does note that Gates plans to reward the students by spending a day “playing checkers and having a picnic with [the] students.”  For the sake of those elementary schoolers, let’s hope Ollie is cooking for the picnic instead of the cafeteria ladies.

Although the article above contains virtually no information (have you checked it out yet?), it got me thinking.  As important as barbecue is to North Carolina history, somebody should develop a BBQ curriculum to be woven into social studies, history and other K-12 classes.  What better way to get kids to pay attention in class than a discussion of barbecue that culminates in a year end pig pickin’?  Heck, you could even have kids in science class dissect a whole hog. I mean, what’s more useful in life, knowing the anatomy of a frog or knowing how to trim ribs and identify the tenderloin?

School What?

It recently came to the Rib Rabbi’s attention (after reading a blog post) that an entire generation of young Americans are being duped. Their rightful inheritance of the noble tradition of barbecue is being bastardized by school board shortcomings and shenanigans.

A teacher named, coincidentally enough, “Mrs. Q” is eating school lunch along her students at a midwestern school this year (she’s intentionally vague). She blogs about the experience on Fed Up With Lunch, and in a recent post she reported that her cafeteria served something called “Rib-B-Que.”  She’d written about this all-beef patty smothered in cloying barbecue sauce before.

These are not ribs.

Nor is it barbecue.

Shame on you, lunch ladies!

Pity the poor children. For their sake and our nation’s, I think it’s time we right this barbecue wrong. Let’s call a spade a spade a beef patty a beef patty. At least a few of the kids already do, as Mrs. Q reports:

I think somebody is trying to be creative with the “rib-b-que” meat (the illusion of variety), but the kids aren’t fooled. I asked one of my students “What did you have for lunch today?” and he replied, “A hamburger.”