Tuesday, November 08, 2005

What's in an MRE?

I have a new co-worker who has been in the Army National Guard for ten years. Last week, he brought me an MRE since I'd never seen one. In case you've never seen one either, prepare yourself for an educational experience. The brown plastic package clearly labeled "MEAL" contained:
  • A package of ham and shrimp jambalaya in a packet in a cardboard box.
  • A high-tech heating bag that gets blistering hot as soon as you add a little water. Amazing!
  • One slice of bread
  • One piece of spiced pound cake
  • A squeeze tube of jalapeno cheese spread
  • A packet of "lemon-lime drink mix" (tasted like gatorade to me)
  • A single-serving packet of Taster's Choice instant coffee
  • Powdered creamer
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Two pieces of white chewing gum
  • A cute little glass bottle of Tabasco sauce
  • A book of matches
  • A moist towlette
  • Several napkins
  • A spoon, and a good sturdy one at that
  • A package of M&Ms (YES!)

I can say from personal experience that the meal wasn't half bad. Besides, it's the closest I ever came to feeling like a soldier. :-)
Oh, and here's the Wikipedia article about MREs. It even has a list of the menus all the way back to 1981!

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