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El Tonaynese Takes Over John O’Connell Cafeteria

April 1, 2009

In an unusual joint closed session, the Board of Supervisors and the Board of Appeals granted the Harrison & 19th El Tonayense taco truck a permit to take over the John O’Connell school cafeteria.

“The San Francisco school lunch program is a clear failure,” noted President of the Board David Chiu. “When students would rather fast for seven hours or jump the fence rather than eat at the O’Connell cafeteria there’s a serious problem. El Tonayense tacos are tasty and healthy, especially compared to the current soggy, undercooked and wet offerings at ‘The Beanery’.”


El Tonayense, a popular taco truck, had simply intended to appeal the 2007 city ordinance that banned mobile food vendors from being within 1500 feet of a school.  Benjamin Santana, the truck’s owner, left today’s meeting in a state of shock.  “We really didn’t expect this.  We thought we were going to have to move, but we didn’t expect to be *closer* to the school.”

While students will have access to El Tonayense all day, local customers are unhappy to learn that they will only have access to El Tonayense from 1:30 to 2:30pm, after lunch is served to the students.  Lipra Sloof is a software developer who works nearby. “This is ridiculous – there’s only a one hour window for the general public to get tacos?  I don’t eat at the same time every day.” Other regulars were seen sizing the exterior fence, especially regulars at Mission Cliffs. “I could totally climb that, even with an al pastor in one hand,” said a customer who wished to remain anonymous.

The Board of Supervisors have little sympathy for inconvenienced taco lovers.  “Education takes priority over dining convenience,” said David Campos, District 9 Supervisor. “The Board sees this as a tool to increase student attendance as well as improve student health.”

Janet Schulze, the principal of John O’Connell, agrees.  “Interest in John O’Connell has skyrocketed. Hundreds of parents have moved O’Connell to the top of their school lottery picks. We’ve even had inquiries into GED and continuing education programs. We may have to start night classes.”

In a rare show of unaninimity, Mayor Gavin Newsom and Supervisor Daly issued a joint press release describing plans to expand the program throughout the city. During their press conference, Newsom and Daly noted enthusiasm from unexpected sources. “We were most surprised by Gus Murad’s application for a charter school permit at the current Medjool site.  We think we can make excellent use of the rooftop bar as a city garden to supply our new cafeteria program.”

Neighboring schools are scrambling to find food partners.  Mission High Principal Eric Guthertz has placed several calls to neighborhood restaurants with little success. “Delfina told me they are booked a month out, and Bar Tartine didn’t return my call.  Anthony and Karen of Mission Street Food told me that there was no way they would wear the required hair nets.”  Many Mission restaurants are now screening calls from schools.  “No way I am getting sucked into this socialist nightmare,” said Ruggero Gadaldi, Beretta’s chef/owner.  “This is too much even for this city.”

Principle Guthertz is holding out hope though. “The Magic Curry Kart has expressed interest, as has the Suriya Thai crew.”

Dana Woldow, head of the Student Nutrition and Physical Activity Committee, was unavailable for comment.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. April 1, 2009 1:52 pm

    This should be particularly convenient for those who are already hanging outside of the school in a windowless white van. Looking at you, John.

  2. April 1, 2009 1:55 pm

    The April Fool’s joke would be on these small local food vendors once they realized that they would have to feed all the low-income students for free, and the rest for $3. The $3 meal would have to include fruit, veg and milk too. And the chuckling would definitely stop when they discovered that the food would have to meet USDA standards, including no more than 30% calories from fat and no more than 10% of the calories from saturated fat.

  3. April 1, 2009 2:08 pm

    (Forgot: Also, their workers would have to be SEIU members making union wages with benefits.)

  4. Antagonist permalink
    April 1, 2009 2:51 pm

    Gah, I was fooled until you mentioned Mission High attempting to contract tartine. Bah. I was really excited, reading this out loud in the SFSU Poli Sci lab. Fool me once, shame on me…


  1. El Tonayense vs THE WORLD « Burrito Justice

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