One couple who is expecting their first child is being mocked online after details about their high-maintenance requests on their Meal Train page made their way to Twitter. The pair asked for elaborate, high-maintenance meals from friends, family, and complete strangers through the crowdsourcing website, listing 30 recipes with ingredients like “thinly sliced cremini mushrooms” and “melted and cooled ghee.”
Meal Train is a website that allows people to ask loved ones to assist them during difficult times by providing home-cooked meals. Often, those who launch a campaign are ill or injured. In the case of Jim and Alex Burns – residents of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, according to a report by the Daily Mail – they were expecting the birth of their first child.
The Burns’ request list sparked outrage for the seemingly outlandish requests, including 30 recipes they’d like prepared and delivered, as well as chores they wanted others to complete. They posted a link to their Meal Train page on a neighborhood’s social media network, putting it on the radar for more than just close friends and family.
Along with elaborate “Paleo breakfast egg muffins with thinly sliced cremini mushrooms, pork breakfast sausage and three tablespoons of melted and cooled ghee,” the couple also had other recipes like “spiced lentil, sweet potato and kale whole wheat pockets.”
The father-to-be also added that the pair didn’t want to be “distracted” by visitors bringing them food, so he placed “a big white cooler in our side yard.” A list of their least favorite meals as well as dietary restrictions were also included.
On the page, Jim wrote: “As the father-to-be, I’m teetering on a fence of emotions. One of the things I’m most afraid of is not getting a great deal of sleep and as a result not being in the best frame of mind to offer my wife the support she needs to recover from the child-birthing process.”
“That’s why I’m putting together this ‘Meal-Train’ or ‘Mental-health check-in train’ or ‘Do you need any help today train,’” he continued. “A meal would be awesome. If you feel comfortable reaching out before you arrive to see if we might need anything else – that’d be even more awesome.”
In the “Special Instructions” section, the couple also detailed chores they would like friends to handle.
“’Meal train’ is loose. We’re looking for a ‘check-in train’ to have people check-in on us to see if we need or want anything as we acclimate to the new routine,” the father-to-be wrote. “That might mean a meal or some snack staples yes, or it may mean stopping by and walking the dog, or doing some dishes, or simply bringing your smile and some conversation.”
By posting the crowdfunding page to a neighborhood social media site, the couple essentially solicited strangers for assistance.
Social media users did not take kindly to the request.
“Amazon Prime and Door Dash/Uber Eats/Grub Hub all exist. I’m all for a meal train but aside from actual allergies from food, you should be grateful for what you get. I also get the Check Ins but JEEZ they are high maintenance,” wrote one Twitter user.
“So basically, he’s not sure he’ll get enough sleep to be able to step up and help his wife with the household duties, and he’s asking the neighborhood to that s*** FOR him,” said another.
The Meal Train page has since been taken down, possibly due to people’s overwhelmingly negative response after it went viral.