Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Dallas 4.3.02: Yuppie Consumption and Frozen Japonicas

In Dallas from Thursday 28.2 to Sunday 3.3. Friday, we had lunch at Kuby’s, a German restaurant in the “Park” (Highland and University) area. I had a sausage sampler plate, which proved to be over-fried in stale grease. The potato salad, red cabbage, and sauerkraut were good, but I soon tired of the omnipresent sweet-sour taste that was reinforced by the mustard.

Afterwards, an interesting tour of the Community Market, evidently an Austin-based chain now reaching Dallas. A huge, cavernous warehouse with concrete floors, chock full of every kind of food imaginable.

That is, I suppose, what gets me about Dallas—the soulless yuppie culture of casual consumption that dominates its suburbs. In principle, access to all those foods is wonderful. But the place is more than a supermarket: it’s a temple full of devotees worshiping at the shrine of sun-dried tomatoes, bowing before the vats of olives. It has no . . . thought . . . at all attached to it, this devotion.

And the prices are horrendous. Steve and I bought a little basting brush for $6.98, and saw a very similar brush at a regular grocery store the next day for 99 cents. Serves us right.

Saturday to McKinney to see antique shops that were closed, as it sleeted and dropped to 14º in the night5. Here, too, but on Sunday night, it fell to 17º. The japonica, which had been full of beautiful salmon-pink blossoms, is now covered in tattered shreds of brown paper. The daffodils are all bent to the ground and appear unlikely to recover after this second hard freeze in a week.

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