|Today's entree was Sloppy Joes with a baked potato and green beans.|
Being the first Wednesday of the month, it was a quiet day at the Community Meal, so quiet that midway through the service, I decided to walk around Trinity Episcopal Cathedral and try to drum up business.
"You should come on in and eat, we have a lot of great food today," I told a group of guys on the sidewalk of NW 19th, near Everett Street. "I know, it's Sloppy Joes said one of them. I already ate and it was delicious."
"Well, we haven't been busy and have a lot, so please don't hesitate to come in for seconds and invite your friends," I said.
"That's because it's just the 4th and people have their checks," he said and added "But not me, I still come every week."
"I'm glad," I said. "You are smart to save your money."
It never fails — we serve fewer people at the start of the month than at the end of the month. Sometimes, especially in months with five Wednesdays, there will be a real sense of desperation in the dining room. I've heard many times from guests, "I'm completely out of money and haven't eaten in days."
I know that eating at the Wednesday Community Meal each week isn't a quick fix or the sole answer to the financial struggles of our guests, but I do think it helps, if only to prove that every penny counts and saving money feels good, especially when it comes with a side of homemade Sloppy Joes, soup, salad and cake from Baker & Spice.
We served 255 meals today.