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Sunday, July 15, 2007

Shopping Report: Sun Harvest

Please don't be offended by this, but if I were to stand outside of most health food stores trying to come up with a broad description of the people who shop there, in a single word, I'd have to choose weird.

Please don't misunderstand; I am all for healthy eating and in fact, over the last year or more have changed my own personal eating habits to include more healthful choices like fresh fruits, grains, less red meat and more fish. I actually do eat organic waffles containing flax, and even have a shaker of flaxseed that I sprinkle on top of fruit and yogurt. But for the most part, I have been able to make these personal changes, without changing the place I buy food, because I don't feel the need to arbitrarily pay double the price for things.

Okay, so if you aren't pissed off yet, I'll tell you why I went to Sun Harvest.

A friend at work let me try these Pita Chips that he says he got at Whole Foods or some place like that. These puppies seem to be deep fried in something, then covered with various seasonings. Healthy or not, they taste great! So, I told my wife we ought to go buy a bucket of them, sit in front of the TV and eat them.


Once again, San Antonio experienced another Noah's Ark-worth of rain, and I decided that instead of driving all over town trying to find Whole Foods, I'd go to this Sun Harvest off IH-10 and Callaghan. If they sell healthy stuff, certainly they would have the healthy junk food, right?

There were lots of older folks shopping at Sun Harvest. I don't attribute shopping there to them trying to be healthy, I suspect that this store is simply a neighborhood grocery to them. Much like in some urban areas, people shop at 7-Eleven simply because they don't have a car, and it is the closest place to purchase a $4.75 gallon of milk and some rolling papers.

Moving away from the normal-seeming old people, now we have the generic weird people I described earlier. These are people who would give anything to live in Austin, and would fit in nicely, but circumstances have kept them here in San Antonio. These people most likely listen to NPR, drive a VW with a flower mounted in the dashboard, have a bumper sticker that says, "Impeach Bush" on their car, and have only dated other ugly people.

But I mean all this in a good way.

As my wife and I strolled through the aisles looking for the Fried Pita Chips Slathered in Herbs I so desperately wanted, I saw one gentleman who was fully decked out in safari clothing. Is that standard issue for a trip to the grocery store on a rainy day, or do you suppose he was simply purchasing a box of frozen Tofurky for his big expedition to The Shoppes at La Canterra?

Another handsome lady was prepared for shopping duty in her Hemp jeans and tie-dyed t-shirt as though at any moment, she expected to meet Peter, Paul and Mary at the check-out line.

Perhaps I'm too harsh, but I make no illusions about why I was there. I was looking for junk food and it just happened to be at a healthy food store I was looking for it in. The interesting thing was, not only did they sport two full aisles of junk-food, but by simply applying the label "Organic" or "Healthy" to a product, people felt free to dig in.

They had set-up an end cap with a two plates of cookies, and not one person (myself included) walked by without trying a few samples. That's fine, but why didn't these people jump on a treadmill and walk for a few minutes after eating? I'll tell you why - because they don't really care about their health, they just like the idea of appearing to care about their health, the environment, and this good feeling gives them an excuse to wear goofy clothing styles.

In the end, I did not find the chips I was looking for so it was pretty much a bust, but my wife did purchase a pound of walnuts and she found them a lot cheaper than what we could get from HEB.

* Please don't be offended; I'm just poking fun - and why not? There really was a goofy guy in a safari outfit.


Anonymous said...

I can't add anything to your comments, Dave, except to say you hit the nail on the head....and brightened my day this rainy day in "Seattle of the South"! Liz

Dave said...

"Seattle of the South" - I love it! I'll need to get my self a double latte mocha something or other from Starbucks!

Not really.

About Your Host

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San Antonio, TX, United States
I love to observe the odd things happening around me as I go about my day. I especially like it when I can get a picture of people being themselves. Here, I attempt to report the various people and events I have encountered in my neighborhood, and my city. I'd also love to hear from you. Feel free to e-mail your experiences and photos of life in San Antonio.

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