Meatball Mondays

The deli located in the back of McLanahan’s Penn State Room advertises “Meatball Mondays” as seen on Friday, Feb. 28, 2020.

Why ‘Meatball Monday’ reigns supreme in State College cuisine

By Erin Hogge

As a college student, food is typically the last thing on my mind.

Between classes and extracurricular activities, it can be pretty difficult to find a meal that satisfies my taste buds and doesn’t put a big dent in my tuition fund.

Last semester, in the midst of a hunger-filled day, I stumbled upon a promotion at McLanahan’s — a grocery store with locations on College Avenue and South Allen Street.

The deal? “Meatball Monday.” It’s a 9-inch meatball sub for — get this — only $2.99.

That’s right. A hearty ~Italian~ meal for a mere $3. I thought it couldn’t be true, but much to my delight, it was.

In the back of the McLanahan’s Penn State Room lies Agostinelli Deli, the home of the sacred meatball sub.

Since the moment I discovered the inexpensive delicacy, I vowed to return to the store each Monday evening to indulge in the saucy meal — and that I have.

The meatball sub seems to be popular with others, too. Employees working on Mondays in the cozy kitchen practically begin crafting the sub before I can open my mouth to place the order.

To understand the greatness of the meatball sub, one has to try it for themselves.

The bread, while extra thick, is flavorful. The sauce that marinates the meatballs is sweet. The cheese that melts over the crust is mellifluous (assuming you order provolone, of course).

And don’t get me started on the meatballs.

They are hefty, juicy, perfect mounds of beef that satisfy even the largest of appetites. It’s not the prettiest sub in the world, but it sure tastes good.

The Meatball Monday deal is a perfect warm meal to get during this harsh Pennsylvania winter.

So, the next time you are in a pinch — whether your wallet is feeling thin or you want to expand your food horizon — check out the Meatball Monday sub. I’m sure you won’t regret it.

Meatball Monday

A "Meatball Monday" sub from McLanahan's Penn State Room sits on a plate on Monday, Feb. 24, 2020.

Why Meatball Monday is pure, sauce-covered evil 

By Braden Dyreson

What is the Good? That is a question that has captivated the great thinkers of history for thousands of years.

Perhaps the truth of the good is transcendental and is ultimately unknowable from our tragically limited human perspective. But, to question what is good or bad, what is right or wrong, what is truth or lie may be the only way to glimpse a vision of the good. Who really knows what is moral or immoral in the face of the colossal reality of our existence?

I know very little — like, very little. I mean, I’m not just stupid, I’m dumb. I only learned how to tie my shoes in sixth grade, and I’m still not sure if I do it correctly. There is one thing I know for certain, one universal truth that remains like a rock weathering the storm of lies — “Meatball Monday” sucks.

For those of you who are blissfully ignorant of Meatball Monday, you may not want to read any further, as it will permanently scar you for life. Every Monday at McLanahan's, you can purchase — if you wish to cause irreparable damage to your large intestine — a “meatball” sub for the high price of $2.99.

Now, I admit that as a college student, it may be appealing to eat a meatball sub for the mere price of taking the CATABus out to the metropolitan Mecca of North Atherton. However, this mythic mixture of a cheap yet tasty hoagie is the most insidious deceit, the most atrocious lie, the most tragic expression of inhumanity to man ever committed.

When you go to the back of the store and observe your meal being prepared, you will see spheres of mystery meat simmering in a stew of tasteless marinara sauce. After these orbs of undercooked “meat” are plopped onto a cold slice of bread, you can then choose a cheese to add to this sandwich of sadness (cheese in of itself is nasty, but that’s another weird rant of supposed “journalism” that we’ll save for another time).

Your sickly sandwich is wrapped in parchment paper and given to you. Like Frodo carrying the ring of power to the dark land of Mordor, the poor wretch who ordered the sub must carry the burden back to the cashier while it oozes with evil and melting parmesan. Once you make your Faustian exchange with the cashier, you get exactly what you deserve — it tastes like a $3 meatball sandwich. The true horror is yet to come.

“Schoooolopbfw” is the sound that will be heard from your bathroom stall a mere hour later, along with your moans and wails. This will be the first of many cases of Chef Boyardee’s revenge that will last the night. You may have heard a bad case of diarrhea referred to as “the runs.” This will be “the sprints.”

The food poisoning will spread through your body, making your stomach feel like it's tearing your torso apart. The tummy rumbles will be as loud as a football game in Beaver Stadium, and the smell will be just as disgusting as Beaver Stadium.

You will be kept awake all night, with sprints to the bathroom and nightmares about what the meatballs you have done to your body. Simultaneously, your body fights to expel the noxious waste from your gastrointestinal organs as quickly as possible.

Meatball Monday is evil — there is no other explanation for it. It keeps our souls and butts chained to the toilets of despair and diarrhea, unable to reach the bright light of goodness and healthy digestive tract movements.

One day, we may be able to eat cheap Italian food, but for now Meatball Monday remains as a monolith of food poisoning. However, never lose hope that we may eat more than just ramen for two bucks — in this life or the next. The moral arc of the universe bends towards justice and away from Meatball Monday.

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