Thursday, June 25, 2009

Why I hate the Purple Onion, part 2

The Purple Onion is the primary produce dealer at the Capitol Market, the only one inside and therefore the only one in the off-season when the farmers are selling flowers, pumpkins and Christmas trees.

The last time I wrote, I said that I despised their practice of bulk packaging their vegetables because it made me buy way more than I needed. That practice has seemingly changed a little and once again I can go in and buy one turnip if I only need one turnip. So that's an improvement, but I still have two major bones to pick:

1. The Purple Onion's motto is "Buy Local, Buy Fresh." In reality the produce they sell is of no different origin than what is sold at Kroger. Occasionally they will have a basket of "W.Va. Apples" or locally grown corn, but most of the time they have the same California/Mexico/South American produce that Corey Brothers delivers to them and every other grocery store in the area. The only thing local about it is the ownership of the store, which is a good thing I guess, but the slogan is misleading.

2. The merchandised retail space in the Purple Onion is approximately divided thusly:

Fruit - 100 square feet

Vegetables - 180 sq. ft.

Beans, peas etc. - 60 sq. ft.

Assorted pre-packaged crap - more than 300 square feet.

The Onion has taken a real shine to packaging everything from nuts to cookies (even individually cellophane wrapped chocolate chip cookies) in little plastic boxes and labeled them to sell by the pound. Stacks and stacks of these things.


jane said...

I always wondered why Bob Schwartz of the Gazette liked The Purple Onion so much. Perhaps they're the only outfit that called him up. Sitting in front of a computer seems to be the way journalism (?) is done these days. I also wonder why Whatisname only mentions Class VII Riverrunners in HIS columns. There are others, quite good others. Anyhow, an Oct. 2006 blog of your's mentions a column with my name in it, a quote from Phil Kabler re: hardball tactic of Our Mayor. I will have to tell this to Phil. I also write occasionaly about politics for the Gazette. Fairly scathing stuff, especially about the Bushmaster. Finally ran out of venom and vitriol about HIM in the early second term. I thought you might be interested in what happened after Phil published that column (which I had never read before today)I got called on the carpey and bitched out by the principal, about "shaking my head and muttering" in the back row where I sat with my students. Now only the Mayor could have told him that, and while I was probably shaking my head occasionly, I was also whispering explanations of what was happenin to my students.The fact that the council meeting was about gerrymandering,that we were at that time was not exactly true. I did cover gerrymandering in that class but wasn't doing so at the time.How that got retailed by Ditty Markham is anybody's guess. But either the Mayor called Jim Vickers,or someone else, or Vickers took it upon himself, to give me a hard time. I was puzzled, wondering wherethehellTHATcame from, and more that a little ticked off. Now Vickers was held up to a lot of public ridicule for throwing Natalie Tennant out of the school one fine morning. Ms. Tennant had been invited by the very minuscule Young Dems club at GW. A very fugitive group back then. He thought she was politicking for her husband (then runing against Ms. Capito, (who's daughter I had had in class, but a year previously, nice girl.) Well, his rather nuts admonishment of me, his demand that another teacher take a Kerry sticker of his (teacher's) file cabinet, in Teacher's OFFICE for Christssake, well things were pretty over the top that year. Principal had a heart attack or something that neccessitated a 5 way heart bypass, I went into full blown breakdown (recovered, thank you very much) I am now finding my way back to writing. I was born to write. Wow, reading your blog answered the questiions I had :Why me? Why then?What the hell ?

missy said...

Why I love the Purple Onion!!

I am so happy that I can have my chocolate dipped strawberries for Valentine's Day. I love your oranges. What a cool idea. Dipped oranges. I enjoy coming there for lunch! You offer a wonderful selection of salads and fruit! Thank you! I loved my Christmas Baskets that you made for me, too! The purple onion is the reason why I shop Capitol Market!!!!

Smelvin said...

Dear Charles,
Hate is such a strong word. Much (all ) of what you say is true.. but;
1.There are no local veggies in winter
2.Have you met and talked to the family that runs the place. They are great folks.
3.The packaged lunches and meals are very good.
4.I've never had a problem buying one turnip.