I had to get mushrooms and Italian sausage for dinner last night and tea tree oil for the vile thrush in my throat from my new asthma inhaler, so I thought I'll bag two birds and my soul with one stone and go to Whole Foods. Now, I'm not fond of WF. I feel that, whenever I walk in, I'm being judged as I don't do all my shopping there as it's outrageously expensive and I don't need all of my food to be packaged by nuns who only wear biodegradable habits and grow all of their own food using only the poop from their free-range chickens as fertilizer. I also am chubby, so I obviously am not an active person, and I don't wear clothing only to be found at REI. I don't drive a hybrid or a Volvo and I'm not a stay-at-home mom living in Ravenna with an activist attorney husband who takes her kids to Gymboree on Tuesdays and grows her own hemp in the backyard. I don't go to the Folklife festival or all the days of SIFF. I don't know the difference between a chardonnay and a Cote du Rhone. So, whenever I go in, I get looks from the skinny, wealthy, vegan, mountain climbing lawyers who ONLY shop at Whole Foods to keep their conscience clear.
So, last night, I got my few items and waited in line to check out. The girl in front of me took an age as she wanted to pay with credit and then get money back from her debit card, even though there was an ATM a foot behind her. So, of course, they let her, and I finally got to the checkstand. I had set my basket down on the floor in another basket, but I apparently put it in askew. The tall, thin, expensively-togged very pregnant woman behind me fixed the basket and then me with a contemptuous look and began unpacking her cart. Panty liners made from unbleached cotton, frozen fruit bars guaranteed kosher and organic, flushable and biodegradable diapers, fifteen kinds of strange root vegetables, unfiltered apple juice. Now, I noticed that she wasn't wearing a wedding ring, and there was no dent, which all ring-wearers get when not wearing the ring at that moment. While I don't believe everyone should be married (Kevin and Britney, hello?), what is it about the specific demographic that shops at WF and buys unbleached cotton panty liners that makes them disdainful of marriage? I CANNOT TELL YOU how many people I have met living in this very absurdly image-conscious city who have children and homes together but are not married, and all of them are just like the basket-straightener. To a one, they make statements to the effect of, "my commitment is between me and my "partner," not me and state", "I don't need a piece of paper to validate my relationship", etc, to which I say, yes it is, and yes you do. If you own property and have children together, that piece of paper means that you have a legal and binding contract to each other, that you value that person enough to state in front of the government and community that you hold to them. I have always found it so ironic that these people are so committed to the environment that they won't use plastic grocery bags, but they won't give their spouse the protection afforded under the law to have health insurance and equal property rights. I think it's especially ironic that these are the same people who look down on folks like me who are married and don't have children and buy processed cheese food.
I have always believed it's an easy out. Those who don't make the commitment legal do so because they want to be able to dissolve the union easily, by merely dividing the CD collection and make arrangements for alternate weekends with the kids. It's the entitlement, the lack of wanting to be involved in anything that would make them sacrifice anything of themselves. Houses can be quickly sold, children will grow up, move out and go to an expensive college about which the parents will endlessly brag. But a divorce is forever a brand that will taint their edginess with normalcy.
I'm absolutely going to get lambasted for being so intolerant of this very irritating and pretentious demographic because it makes me sound so horrifyingly conservative. It's really the only area of daily life about which I am fairly conservative (never politically, just socially). But it's my blog and I'll drink Tang and not Odwalla if I want to.