Wednesday, October 27, 2010

xch-ch-changes

Can you feel the earth move as the Killer Hobbies gals all move one spot to the left? Camille has struck out on her own and we've all shifted a day earlier. So here I am on Thursday. Of course it feels a little odd today, but I'm sure in a week or two, we'll all be adjusted.

Why is change so hard? I had a big change forced on me lately. My local grocery store closed. It was a locally owned small chain that had been in business for sixty-seven years. Family owned, the firm used union workers who were mature and friendly. I remember a big party for one of the checkers-on his 25th anniversary. Amazing that anyone could live in the Bay Area on a grocery clerk's salary. Yes, their prices were a bit higher, but they had a full butcher shop and the best produce available outside a farmer's market.

What put them out of business, they say, is changing habits. We're now buying more groceries at places like Target and Walmart than at grocery stores. In my neighborhood, a Costco opened up several years ago. That was the final nail in the coffin for PW.

I understand the convenience. We're all busy. And I like low prices, too. But at what cost?

What do we miss when we don't have a local grocer? Good paying jobs, for one thing. Target and Walmart don't pay their people as much as PW did. Knowledge. I doubt anyone at Target will know what to do with a tri-tip roast or be willing to cut into paper thin strips for fajitas as the butchers would. A sense of community. Passing the time with the checker is a time honored American right. And don't ask anyone at Costco what aisle the toilet paper is. They're too busy handing out free samples of food that will lead you to an early grave.

Yes, this change is not setting well with me. I worry that our society goes for cheap prices, not realizing that they're putting themselves and their neighbors out of good paying jobs.

Any changes not sitting well with you? Do you welcome change? Or dread it?

8 comments:

Dru said...

I crave routine, so changed is not easily welcomed. Right now I'm dealing with a daytime work situation which necessitates a change that I'm dreading. I do know once it happens, things will be okay.

A lot of these mom and pops stores are losing ground and I'm going to miss walking into a store where they know you name and what items you mostly purchase.

Sometimes change is good but hard.

Becky Levine said...

I'm doing better with change than I used to, I know that. But losing my grocer store--another small, local chain--would be too much. Honestly, I don't know where I'd shop!

Wouldn't it be nice if all the changes were good?

Linda O. Johnston said...

Hey, Betty, it's my day to blog... er, I blogged yesterday.

Yes, change is hard but sometimes necessary. I'm finding that I'm shopping less at my local big-chain grocery store because it keeps increasing prices on the things I buy most. Instead, I'm going to the smaller chains a lot more--and possibly helping them, in my small way, to grow and thrive.

Terri Thayer said...

Good luck with your changes, Dru. Work changes are the norm anymore and we don't have much choice than to go with it.

If changes were all good, would we notice? I suspect not.

Linda, at least I know I follow you whatever day it is. But I must admit it's kind of nice knowing my blogging is over for the week.

Betty Hechtman said...

Personally, I have no interest in grocery shopping at Target or Walmart. Savinga few cents isn't everything. Besides, who wants to wander around looking at tee shirts with frozen food melting in your cart.

Linda O. Johnston said...

Oops--I'm so confused about the change I addressed my comment to Betty. Sorry, Terri!

Jane Jeffress Thomas said...

I have started going to whatever local store I can find and paying more. I have come to despise places like Walmart. They have destroyed our small mom and pop stores and I guess what did it for me was how they ran out all of the small stores with fabric and now they are getting rid of the fabric in their stores. For someone like me, I can still drive to the city to purchase fabric, but the little old ladies who love to quilt and purchased their fabric at Walmart, where will they get their fabric now? Unless it is an emergency, I refuse to go into a Walmart. I have even moved my prescriptions away from them. Yes, I will pay more, but feel better doing so.

Terri Thayer said...

Right, Betty! No problem, Linda. I thought it was part of your confused schtick.

Jane, way to go! I feel very strongly about supporting local fabric/quilt shops. They will be gone if we don't buy there. I'd rather buy less, too.