Re: Common meals - mandatory participation?
From: Diana Carroll (
Date: Thu, 21 Aug 2014 08:58:21 -0700 (PDT)
Mosaic commons meal program is voluntary and we have 3-4 meals a week most
weeks. I also think it's pretty popular.

On Wednesday, August 20, 2014, Jenny Guy <jenstermeister [at]> wrote:

> What an interesting thread, so many takes on meals programs!
> Congratulations to Songaia for having such a robust meals program while
> being totally voluntary. It looks like the other voluntary systems don't
> have as many meals, but if the casual atmosphere is more important than
> frequent meals, then that sounds like a great fit. I'm also impressed that
> 2 communities reported having people who just love cooking for everyone, so
> everyone gets to eat, without having to cook.
> WRT the original question, my thought would be not to throw out a mandatory
> program that's working for most, but maybe negotiate with the folks who
> don't like participating in meals, to see if there's alternative work they
> can do. I would think it might work to try this out as a 'special
> arrangement', rather than throwing it open to everyone. And, as a couple of
> people have mentioned, it would really depend on why they don't like the
> meals program. It's unusual to really dislike both cooking and cleaning up.
> Sharon, I do agree that one good approach would be to have cooking just be
> one of the jobs in the workshare program, as long as there ended up being
> enough cooks. I think it might hinge on how many people wanted to cook;
> you'd want to be careful not to end up with no meals.
> And that gets into one of life's big issues, how much can you do the work
> you love and are good at, and how much do you have to knuckle down and try
> to focus on tasks you don't feel suited for. I guess that partly depends on
> whether you're surrounded by complimentary types, and how much they're
> available.
> Jenny Guy
> Kingfisher Cohousing, Oakland Calif.
> On Fri, Aug 15, 2014 at 5:43 AM, Sharon Villines <
> sharon [at] <javascript:;>>
> wrote:
> > On Jul 31, 2014, at 7:33 PM, Pat Elliott <pdelliott43 [at]
> <javascript:;>> wrote:
> >
> > > we learned, to the surprise of most of us, that for members of two or
> > three households participating in the program is painful, if not
> traumatic,
> > whether as members of cook teams or eating at common meals.
> >
> > I can think of many reasons this might be true but I'm wondering
> > specifically what their reasons were.
> >
> > (From reading these messages, I'm becoming more convinced that the work
> of
> > meals should be considered part of workshare whether people eat or not.)
> >
> >
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