We couldn’t resist hoisting from the comments this reflection by EBGuy on food shopping as religion (prompted by today’s opening of Berkeley’s Trader Joe’s) :
I have a theory about Berkeley.* With organized religion on the decline, we look to food to provide a shared communal experience. Grocery stores are our cathedrals. Feel free to make your own list mapped to a different faith tradition:
- Farmers’ Markets: outdoor tent revivalists. This is where the Food Fundamentalists go.
- Berkeley Bowl: non-denominational mega church. Draws from the surrounding region. You go there, right?
- Berkeley Natural Grocery: storefront religion at its finest.
- Monterey Market: Baptists. True believers. Schisms.
- Trader Joe’s: Assemblies of God. Fervent believers. Growing fast.
- Safeway: Mainline Protestants. Trying to revamp but slowly dying.
- Andronico’s: high church Episcopalians.
- Farm Fresh To You CSA: Jehovah’s Witnesses
*This post should not be read by the humor impaired.