Jeremy's Weblog

I recently graduated from Harvard Law School. This is my weblog. It tries to be funny. E-mail me if you like it. For an index of what's lurking in the archives, sorted by category, click here.

Monday, June 06, 2005

I passed by "The Park Slope Food Coop" today and decided to take a brochure to see what it was all about. Apparently, in exchange for a $25 payment, $100 refundable deposit, and 2 3/4 hours of volunteer time per month, I could save 20-40% on my groceries. So I did some Internet sleuthing to figure out if this was a good deal or not. And I stumbled on this page with rants mocking the ridiculousness of Food Coop board meetings.

He called the current coop shopping experience "an insult to the human species . . . you come into the current store and it's like a Waring blender at high speed." He said that the future, redesigned space would give a coop a "sense of unification." For instance, a matching bank of display cases will stretch across the rear walls of the three coop buildings. Soon after entering, shoppers will find an open "arena where you can catch your breath," with display islands featuring new products. The chilled-produce aisle will be "blown open" to double its existing width "because you have some unique shopping habits, like parking your cart in the aisle and abandoning it," he complained. After the redesign, "you can ping-pong back and forth; it gives you space to breathe." In the Building Next Door's shopping area, since six structural columns limit aisle structure, the plan has "sandwiched those puppies" in some refrigerated cases.

Looked like fun. Then I went to the Coop webpage and realized it's kind of like a communist cult.

Selecting a workslot will take approximately 15-20 minutes, though the whole process of joining could take longer if there are many people who want to join at once. Every adult member of your household must choose a workslot....

Until you receive your card in the mail, in order to enter the Coop you will have to ask the Entrance Worker to look you up on the “List of People Who Can Shop Without a Card.”....

When your child turns 18 and is out of high school, s/he is required to join the Coop as a working member. Children of members are exempt from paying the one-time joining fee but are required to pay the investment. Coop "children" who have turned 18 should contact the Membership Office about receiving their own membership card and selecting a workslot.
Also, if you miss a workslot, they kill you. Is all of this worth it to save 20% on my applesauce?