I hate supermarkets……(if having a rant – irrational, shouty, ridiculously angry – it’s best if the subject of said rant is of no real significance)……yet, of course, I wouldn’t be without them. The range of products is huge, the economies of scale impressive, the efficiency of delivery time-saving. This is modern living. And, honestly, I like being able to shop for almost anything I need, on a whim, and at any time of the day or night. I don’t object to these things. I just hate supermarkets. They reduce the user to a statistic in the cause of optimal economics. I hate ASDA’s and Sainsbury’s livery. I hate Waitrose’s and M&S’s pretentiousness. I hate Tesco’s variability.
I’ve recently had cause to spend a few weeks away from where I normally live, and this has meant getting to grips with new supermarkets. Because, you get used to your normal supermarket. You know where everything is, know what they stock and what they don’t. You organise your life around such things. A new supermarket is something of a Twilight Zone. Everything has a semblance of familiarity (a Sainsbury’s is a Sainsbury’s is a Sainsbury’s), but also mind bendingly different. Cognitive dissonance ensues, as you wander round the store in endless circles of confusion, and to the stares of the surrounding cognoscenti. This is the real test of self belief and confidence. Can you enter a supermarket for the first time and quickly assimilate all the familiar, but unfamiliar, stimuli…….and actually emerge with what you wanted to buy….and your sanity? (The whole thing is like trying to cook in someone else’s kitchen…don’t get me started).