Thursday, February 12, 2009

A note of discouragement (or, I need some chocolate)

The background on this: a study published by the Heart and Stroke Foundation "highlighting the issue of access to cheap and nutritious food." If healthy foods like apples and brown rice are more expensive in certain parts of our country, then we're more likely to substitute cheap pop and chips. So the thinking goes.

An editorial in the local paper comments that our area "enjoys fairly modest food prices" but that "Such [market] forces are in play, one suspects, in the news that brown rice and dried beans are hard to find and pricey in many parts of Canada. It's probably safe to say such foods are not something many people are shopping for in many parts of the country." In other words, maybe dried beans are sometimes expensive because there is little demand for them?

Oh gosh, that's sad. But it seems that's the truth: that all the Frugal Hacks out there, though the blogroll seems long, are really a small percentage of grocery consumers. The bean eaters are hugely outnumbered by the pop tart buyers. We can post all the lentil casseroles we want on our blogs, but the reality is that most people--not necessarily our friends, but the vast majority--will either turn up their noses or have absolutely no idea what a lentil is or what you do with it.

I got a flash of this same thinking when I watched the video about pulling stuff off thrift shop shelves. "Pre-1985 books" were mentioned with as little concern as if they were pre-1985 potty trainers or pre-1985 typewriter repair manuals--as if they really were suspect or useless items that should be discarded--and I thought, I bet the majority of people watching it don't even think that matters. Who's interested in pre-1985 books anyway? They might be a bit more concerned about the fact that most of the kids' jeans and coats will be gone from the racks, but that's a real, practical issue. A kids' book is a kids' book, it's a thing with pictures, who cares if our kids are limited to post-1985 printings?

If you're reading this, the odds are you do care. Those who don't see things that way probably aren't bothering to read a mom blogger who gets too emotional over old pieces of paper glued between covers.

I know I'm among friends here.

But it does get discouraging.


Birdie said...

Discouraging indeed.

Meredith@MerchantShips said...

Yes, it does.

I can't help but smile at your phrasing, though:

The bean eaters are hugely outnumbered by the pop tart buyers.

You are too cute.

Sebastian said...

We'll all huddle together and read our pre-1985 books under the covers with flashlights so the gnomes with regulations can't see us.

Headmistress, zookeeper said...

Mama Squirrel, my friend, when my husband started working at a grocery store he was absolutely floored at what other people buy. He says he still, years later, cannot believe the number of frozen pizzas, frozen sandwiches, and crates of chips that walk out the door.

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