Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Lately I've been avoiding King Soopers, the big store close to my house where I used to shop for a lot of our groceries. It's part of a national chain, Kroger. Instead I shop mostly at Sunflower Market, which is within walking distance of our house and is smaller.
King Soopers used to be a nice store as far as supermarkets go, but then they expanded it. As a result of the expansion, the aisles seem longer, narrower, taller, and more cluttered. You can't see where you're going, because the shelves are so high they impede the view of the directory that tells you what you can find in the next several aisles. And of course it's just what our expanding population needs- more choices of more bad food.
It's also very expensive. Things that are packaged are expensive. They are colorful and are wrapped in materials to make them more visually appealing. I find the supermarkets overwhelming. I feel bombarded with color, clutter, and noise. It's too much input for me, and you get distracted by all kinds of things that seem to jump in your face, which is no accident. You end up spending more money as a result.
Big box stores take a long time to get through if you just need a few items, usually you end up covering the entire store because things are spread out in different aisles. I also find it irritating when you have more than a few customers per aisle with grocery carts, because you have to maneuver around each other and it's hard to focus on finding the thing you want in the multitude of choices.
When I go shopping, for anything, I know what I want and I like to go in, get it, and leave. I find that big supermarkets are a huge waste of time and energy, so if I can't find it at Sunflower, I either don't need it or I plan one trip to the big box, preferably early in the morning before the crowds show up.
Now it's Christmas and every end cap, and all the big aisles, are full of glitzy plasticized garbage, and you have to listen to Christmas music, interrupted by advertisements. The store is crowded, even though they expanded, the aisles are not wider- just more numerous, so it gets to be really annoying when more than two or three people are shopping in the same part of the aisle.
So last night, as I was trying to get to the dairy case and having to navigate through freezer cases in the middle of the aisles, and huge cardboard displays of red, green and gold Christmas crap, I moved my cart to get out of another customer's way, and nearly knocked over a pyramid of chocolate covered Ritz crackers.
I have no idea how long these have been around, but it's new to me. It sounds disgusting, but I don't like Ritz crackers, and they fall into the category of things I would never buy unless I were running a really long ultra and needed salt, fat, and variety. And even then, I'd choose some other crackers.
Seeing this product struck me as so disgusting, I pictured people as wide as the aisles buying them, huge rolls of fat flopping off their waists, shirts that barely covered the bottom of their hanging pannus.
That people will buy this crap is what really bothers me. The food corporations are profiting off the destruction of our health. People spend money on a package of air, surrounded by cardboard and cellophane, with contents of so little nutritional value. I don't know what they cost, I didn't notice the price, but I imagine it's probably 3 or 4 dollars a box. And for that you could buy a gallon of milk, some yogurt, beans and rice, or some vegetables instead.
I'm sure the Nabisco corporation is planning to put a portion of their profits toward national health care and diabetes prevention.
It's apathy. Most people who shop at these stores do know better, but they fall into the traps of marketing. Someone is getting very wealthy off your failure to think. And it's not the people in the factories making the crackers, either.
If the store continues to sell things like this, they will have to expand again because no more than one person at a time will be able to walk down the aisle, they'll be so fat!
Come on people, use some part of your head besides your mouth! Quit supporting the gluttony!