142 Kids to my House for Pasta?

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So, it goes like this . . .

Okay, so here’s the deal-e-o…


Last night, against my better judgment, I agreed several weeks ago to host my son and daughter’s cross-country team’s pasta party carboloading-hormone blast.

This under the expressed request of the Team Captain, who by the way happens to be a headstrong no nonsense kind of girl, namely my daughter.

I just don’t know where the hell she gets her ball busting ways, but she was intent on hosting this party…

Yes, I just don’t know where she got these personality traits…

She insisted. My son insisted. I bought pasta.

But the question still remains, what the hell was I thinking?

Their cross-country team consists of 142 kids.


That’s right, 142 kids — no typo. This was a real shindig of high school hopping hormones.

Double Ugh.

(This is me screaming) Aaaaaaaaaah…. aaaah… a…  …. …. (passed out from dread….)

Okay once again, I ask, “Have I lost my mind?”


Not an answer that I like to treat lightly. But, definitely a possibility.

So yes, I agreed to cook pasta for 142 kids that were over-eating for an impending cross-country meet.

Do you all know how much teenagers actually eat anyway?

I am here to tell you that they eat a-fricking-lot of food.

And, these kids were coming over to my house last night to “Bulk Up” on carbs so that they could outperform their competition the next day.

Bulk up?

….   …. (me passed out again…)

I had serious “performance anxiety.”



Thank God for technology.

So, I started boiling these giant lobster pots, that each held about 1,000,000 gallons of water. The giant white one, actually boiled 6 pounds of dried pasta at a time. I just think about that — the hugeness of the pot… the amount of water… and 6 pounds of cooked pasta… just the way that alone was enough to break my back and scrawny little arms.

I’m not built for crap like this.

Granted, the side benefit was the water steaming on my face that created a sauna effect to clear out my pores. However, the fact that I almost dumped hot boiling water and cooked pasta down the front of me — well, the cleansing of said pores (which I am not admitting that I have such pores that actually need cleaning) was hardly a silver lining…

When all is said and done, I counted the empty 1 pound cellophane bags of pasta that were ripped open in a huge pile on the floor —  18 pounds of pasta cooked, I was finished. In more ways than one.

Since I did this pasta party thing last year, and obviously didn’t learn from the event enough to say “No!” this year, I have now come up with a system, so to speak.

First, I go to the $.99 store and buys some of those large aluminum trays so that I don’t have to wash anything at the end of this carboloading event.

18 pounds of pasta? I bought eight huge aluminum trays.

Then you have to make sure that you have the extra large aluminum foil — only by Reynolds. You don’t want an aluminum foil faux pas, so you can only trust the best. Heavyweight, by the way. Costco. And, while you’re there get plates, glasses, flatware, napkins, and a book entitled, “Where did I lose my Sanity, again?”

Then you buy a vat of butter.

Not patties. Not sticks. The largest container of butter that you can find. The end.

And, you will use all of it. Slick those noodles so that they won’t stick together… ever. You cover with the aluminum foil and then stack them in your oven (at 200 degrees) with cookie sheets separating so that they don’t fall into each other and smash the pasta below.

Brilliant, huh?

I know.

Don’t ask how I came up with this idea. Maybe it was because last year all of the trays were stacked one on top of the other and mashed the pasta turning into one giant noodle per tray… maybe that was the incentive for my brilliance.


But, I have to say, that the kids that came last night were truly nice, honorable and well behaved kids.

I think this is due to the fact that cross country runners are true athletes. Very focused. Individuals with literal goals.

They are each beautiful in their own way. So cute the way they giggle about completely inane things.

I remember giggling about inane things.

It was only yesterday.

And, I’m not in high school anymore. Thank God.

I have to tell you that last night went so smoothly, that I would do it again and again for these kids. I’ve had pasta parties for other teams and there were problems where the kids tried to get into the liquor cabinets and things like that…it was disappointing.

However these kids, just wanted to eat, have fun, and they even helped me clean up.

Think about that.

I’m going to repeat that — they helped to clean up!!!

It was wonderful.

So maybe that’s why I did it, to make my children happy and to revisit the cuteness of high school…

Maybe that’s why I chose the insanity of cooking 18 pounds of pasta (and by the way, about 4 gallons of Ragu! Yes, gallons!)

And, I guess I haven’t learned my lesson, because I would do it again… and again.

Lovely kids.

Truly lovely.

So, if you get the opportunity to give a pasta party for your child’s cross-country team, don’t hesitate… but, DO buy enough pasta — they are going to eat it!

I’m thinking about catering…. Nah. 😉

Be well (sorry, no pics, “…. too embarrassing,” my kids said!),


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S. Belle Karper, Author, Speaker www.BelleKarper.com
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About SheriBelle

Award-Winning Author & Screenwriter

4 responses to “142 Kids to my House for Pasta?”

  1. Kathy says :

    Belle, I can’t imagine cooking for 142 anything, kids, teens, adults, or dogs! Kudos to you for not only tackling this, but pulling it off like only you could do. What a nice thought to think that teens can be gracious and even offer to clean up. This is enough to bring a smile to anyone’s face.

    Thanks for sharing, your writing is wonderful and I look forward to every new article.

  2. Paul V Harris says :

    Belle darling,

    Of all the reasons I could write for why you are my hero, I never thought this would top my list- Holy Cow!! Cooking 18 pounds of pasta and 4 gallons of Ragu! You are truly my inspiration.

    Your cooking adventure is just more proof as to why you’re so special (and maybe in need of long overdue vacation)!

    Keep the good stuff coming- Your blog is a true breath of fresh air-

    Love you-


  3. whyguy says :

    You are a brave, brave, brave woman.

  4. Diana says :

    We don’t have 142 in the marching band, never mind cross country. I’m not sure if we hit 40 kids on the regular track team (both boys and girls combined). Heck, I’m not even sure we hit 142 in one high school grade. That being said – teens eat a lot, whether they are in cross country or in the marching band, and they appreciate anyone willing to feed them. Let me tell you, their parents appreciate you too. Aren’t they a lot of fun though?

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