I have seen the future…

…and it is Wegmans. Natasha and I drove there last night. Here is one description. Quite simply, it makes your typical Whole Foods look like a dilapidated 7-11. It has a dozen ethnic food markets rolled into one, not to mention basic groceries, superb and varied produce, the best seafood around, various snack bars, and a cheese selection to die for. I would guess it is twice as large as a large Giant store and much prettier to boot; the atmosphere leaves you in the kind of glorious stupified daze that makes the Frankfurt School sound occasionally plausible. The fine things are not cheap but they are not overpriced relative to competitors.

Not surprisingly, there is already an anti-Wegmans movement afoot; the typical branch takes up around 15 to 18 acres; Giant and Safeway (!) are complaining about the “environmental impact” of the stores. Not that they’re afraid of the competition, or anything like that.

Given all this choice, why you can’t buy a healthy apple at the concession stands of most movie theaters? On the brighter side, they are starting to put healthy food into vending machines.