I’m happily sitting at my desk, and it’s 11:00 am. The tickles of hunger pains from an hour ago have morphed into raging stomach growls with devious minds of their own. As I wait for Pavlov’s dog whistle to sound at noon, the committee in my head is holding a board meeting to determine the most apropos level of my current hunger status. Following is my finalist list of The Hunger Names.

  1. Peckish – A British term used to describe a mid-morning snack attack. Even though I’m not British, I’m certain that I flew through the Peckish hour this morning at approximately 6:15 am. When I go home, I will check the ingredients of the protein powder sold to me by a hulking man named Sven. It seems to me that some form of May Not Curb Peckish Desires disclaimer should be prominently displayed on the label.
  2. Munchies – While I can say with strong conviction that I could use a greasy sack full of Taco Bell right now, munchies still do not rise to the status of hunger satiation. I believe this is more appropriate for those watching late night (early morning) infomercials that make outlandish claims of thinner thighs in 7 minutes and dewy facial skin using Dr. Dermo’s sandblasting techniques. It is also unexplainable why my friends in Seattle are afflicted with the munchies more frequently.
  3. Feening – A craving is distinguishable from the munchies by diagnosing its initial impact. You are feening a huge helping of pizza pockets if you have opened the freezer 14 times looking for these little pockets o’ goodness, but they have failed to appear each and every time. Nothing else will due at this point of your hunger. You must now get into your Prius and ergonomically float your way to the store. You are experiencing an elevated stage of feening if you stand in front of your grocer’s pizza pocket door reading box ingredients for one that contains the most cheese-food content.
  4. Marvin – There’s an English guitarist named Hank Marvin that may be the genus of this long used term. While in the accompaniment of your Cockney pals, you will blend in like a NY taxi cab if you announce that you are Marvin for some crumpets. This term has stretched and evolved into other worldly regions such as I’m Starvin’ Marvin (USA), or Hankering for some Hungry Jacks (AUS), which can later lead to a dreaded condition called “The Jacks.”
  5. Famished – Being famished comes from the root word Famine. I have nothing funny to say about this category. Let’s be good citizens, get off our collective overfed asses, and donate to a local food pantry. Help a brother out!
  6. Could Eat a Horse – This level of hunger is self-explanatory. If you believe you are indeed hungry enough to eat an animal that stands 7 hands at the shoulder, you may have reached the hallucination phase. Maybe you should re-evaluate and weigh in with something smaller and more realistic, like being hungry enough to eat the South end of a skunk headed North. That’s still damn hungry!
  7. Fungry – My blog disclaimer forbids me from breaking this slang word down for you. But if you have reached one of the highest levels of hunger known to the average spoiled suburbanite, then you know that you are not only hungry, but you are Effen Hungry. This term is used successfully when settling any family argument in the car while the spouse and kids try to decide if dining at Olive Garden or Maggianos is best. You are allowed to turn around and fake-swat at the little sweet ones sitting in the back and exclaim “I don’t care! I’m Fungry!”
  8. Hangry – Once your body has roiled through the previous 7 stages of hunger, you have finally reached the pinnacle of food desire. A warning to friends should be issued and someone you trust should transport you to the nearest food source. Do not attempt to poke this bear by offering a healthy snack bar made from nuts and styrofoam. This will only serve to infuriate the hangry individual. If you happen to be married to this person, it is a well-known fact that you are banned from arguing food logistics, and for Marvin’s sake, do not, I repeat DO NOT make direct eye contact.

Plan your daily stages of food consumption so that you will be prepared for all levels of hungry. As for me, I am now hovering somewhere between 2 and 3. Before my munchies spiral out of control, I will leave you with this mental image. I plan to pig out on a Subway grinder before I get a bad case of the Jacks.


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