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A Good Outgroup [Jul. 11th, 2017|11:59 am]
At the Farmers' Market, a mom called to her kids that they could play five more minutes and then they were going to the "recycled book store." I was trying to figure out if she just meant Half Price Books or if this was some other cutesy Austin thing, and then the other mom with her jumped up. "Oh no! I spilled my kombucha!"

Oh no indeed.

* * *

At Costco, the lady was handing out samples of vegan chili.

"Thanks," I said.

"And it's got ZERO chemicals in it!" she said. "None. At all. Literally."

Literally no chemicals? Is that so? 'Cause I was gonna let it go with a "we both know that by 'chemicals,' we actually mean like, 'preservatives' and not 'all chemicals.'" But then you HAD to go and tack that literally onto it, and now I hate you a tiny bit.

I didn't give her crap about it though, because a.) Eleanor really liked the chili, b.) she's a nice person who is handing out free food at Costco, and c.) I'm terrible at confrontation and probably would have tripped over my clever comeback and then run off to sulk in the paper towel aisle.

* * *

Did you know they'll try to sell you kimchi for like $10 for a little jar? I've seen this price at two different places.

You know what kimchi is? It's mostly just cabbage, salt, chili powder, and time. And the time is probably the most valuable of all those ingredients.

If you ever get a hankering for kimchi, don't pay ten dollars for a jar. Ask me and I'll freaking make you some. I've started again for the first time after the pregnancy, and mine tastes better than the sample I tried of the pricey stuff.

* * *

Did you know they'll also try to sell you something called "kimchi shots?" This is an even littler jar of what I assume is the leftover brine from the kimchi. I checked out the size, and it's even more expensive by volume.

This is a product that exists.

* * *

And it's funny, because these things infuriate me way more than say, a product like this does. The tater chips are probably for people who are so unlike me that I shrug my shoulders and say, "Well, whatever makes you happy." But the kimchi shots will probably be bought by people whose values and habits are close enough to mine that I feel compelled to shake them by the shoulders and go, "What are you THINKING? STOP. PUT THAT SHIT DOWN RIGHT NOW and go make your own kimchi like a REAL hippie, come on."

There's an essay I like about this phenomenon:

"Outgroups are rarely literally 'the group most different from you,' and in fact far more likely to be groups very similar to you sharing almost all your characteristics and living in the same area."

It's super long, but worth the read.