Saturday, May 31, 2008

Globalization, Why Have You Forsaken Me?

Everyone talks about how how small the world is becoming; I have electronics that were made in China, for crying out loud.

So why, oh why, is so much of American stuff still so regional?

Allow me to 'splain.

This may be the best soda ever.  However, you can't find it in a single grocery store here.  Thank goodness for Galco's.

I keep hoping that since Ralphs merged with Kroger, at least Kroger's house brand birch beer might make it to the west coast.  The slow appearance of other house brand items gave me brief hope but -- still, no birch beer.

Now, mind you, I didn't even know that the stuff existed until my early 20s, on a trip back to Pennsylvania (I think it was one that was just for a visit).  I knew of root beer, of course, but my mom remembered birch beer fondly and found some in a store.

Oh.  My.  God.

And it's not just beverages.

So, a couple of summers ago, I went over to the Wegmans (aaah, Wegmans, you wonderful, amazing, Costco-sized Whole Foods/Trader Joe's...why can't you migrate to the west coast?) for a few staples (Patrick never eats well on trips, so a stop somewhere for bread and peanut butter is par for the course) and fell so immediately in love.

If you like to's like heaven.  It's like walking into a Gelsons or a Whole Foods, with stuff of similar quality to either of them or a Trader Joe's, but it's the size of a Costco, and carries at least the variety of stuff you'd find at a grocery store.  It has...oh, it's beyond description.

Let's just say that I was terribly, terribly sorry that I had nothing really to cook with or on.

Plus, they had actual, real, red, non-molded strawberries.  From California.  In Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.  Of better quality than the ones in Gelsons in California.

And Friendly's.

Half Baskin Robbins, half...what?...Denny's, maybe, but with good food.  I have never in my life enjoyed fish, but their fish and chips was yummy.  And that's saying nothing of their absolutely wonderful blended Oreo...thing.  Thicker than, say, milk, but thinner than a's....

Pardon me, but I'm channeling my inner Homer....

(As it's made it as far as Arizona, we won't count Perkins -- a half-Denny's, half-Millie's clone with good food.)

This rant inspired by yet another Sonic commercial tormenting me with Sour Apple Slushes to numb my itchy throat that are at least an hour away.

Not cool, cable.  So not cool.

(Also?  What the heck is Ruby Tuesday, and why are you advertising their yummy-looking food on my cable right after the Sonic commercials?)

ETA:  Googling has told me that Ruby Tuesday exists in California only near Sacramento.  What the heck, cable?  Sonic is...if not local, at least...well, kinda local, if you're the drive-to-Disneyland types.  But...Sacramento?

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