From One Shopper to Another

Yesterday I went to Kowalski’s. If I had an adventure to share with you, I would, but I don’t. Yes, it was expensive but I will probably go back. Number one, it is pretty close to where I live and you can always find a nice parking spot. It’s not some huge busy zoo like Cub or Rainbow. Number two they got some seriously good apples. I eat apples for breakfast. Bet you didn’t know that. Number three, they have lots of good bachelor-o-matic meals that are mostly prepared–just heat it up. Meatloaf, ribs, marinated chicken… True, they are like 5 bucks a pop, but that is about how much I would spend on the ingredients anyway. That and I’m too lazy to sit and make something.

But the best thing about Kowalski’s is that it creates a welcoming environment that makes you want to shop there. Far from being a counter-cultural curmudgeon who readily sees through the marketing scheme, I drink in the low-brow capitalist strategy of placing numerous high-quality choices complete with nifty packaging right before my eyes. The comfort of the shopper is as important that the purchase of the shopper, so goes the reasoning. And it’s true. I was sucked into the veritable cornucopia of delicious choices ranging from pre-packaged to organic. How could I go wrong?

David Wells makes the point in his book Above All Earthly Pow’rs that this cultural phenomenon of “comforting consumers” has influenced the church in the West to adapt to the culture in strange ways. It’s a startling thing to see it at work. It is pretty effective stuff. The whole “church-shopping” thing could not be anymore natural.


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