Zen Foodism

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Ten checkout lines, seven express. Five happy people each with one item. Two happy checkers with nothing to do. And a boatload of full baskets lined up down the aisles in the three–slow–regular–lines. Five bucks for boca burgers and I have to bring a book to make it through the checkout line? Whole Foods on Huron Street, enough with you.

Over to Jewel–my Jewel on Grand, have you ever, I mean ever heard of healthy food? Did tofu scare you once as a child? Are you allergic to Soy Delicious? Was there a lawsuit from non-mushy eggplant rolling unabashedly across the punched rubber floor liner? How many times have I fled Whole Foods and walked up to you, only to have you let me down? Too many.

But who wants to go to Jewel on Division? Who wants to go to Jewel on Roosevelt? Dominick’s on Halsted? No passport to travel so far. Hang on, Dominick’s on Grand? Graaaand? And Fairbanks? Isn’t it just tourists and late-night motorcycle cruisers over there?

I have onion skins and lint in the frigde. I have no choice now. Not so long a walk…um…damn! Can you be any bigger? (How lucky a store to draw out that question?) Looks like a Whole Foods, feels like a Jewel. On steroids. You mean we’re allowed to have a selection when we go shopping downtown? Stop! Too many choices, I’m confused. I want my Stalin-era, one-choice-for-you (it’s really Albertson’s) teeny little Jewel back.

Screw that, shelves of Soy Delicious! Eggplant with attitidue! You mean they grow lettuce in more than two varieties?? I could get used to this treatment. Very, very.

Basket full of boca and soy and navel oranges and everything Jewel on Grand sends me to Whole Foods on Huron to buy. But paying Jewel on Grand prices. Forget you, River North supermarkets. The Streeterville Dominick’s got me in a lovelock now. Except…

Ten checkers. All open. All union…all slow as shit. A boatload of full baskets lined up down the aisles in the ten–slow–lines.

The Kinks’ “Back Where We Started” plays on the PA system while I contemplate my navels.

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