When I first moved to New York City, I made it my mission to never become a stereotype like so many of the people I made fun of in my head while walking down the sidewalk on a daily basis.
About two years later, I'm a bearded "comedian" and transplant contributing to the gentrification of a neighborhood in Brooklyn where I subsist on a diet primarily of locally brewed beer and amazing dumplings from a place nobody really knows about yet.
I eventually decided to embrace my uninspired lifestyle, which meant I had to pick a particular social issue I could parade as my pet cause at parties attended by people who have the ability to genuinely care about things besides their own self-interest.
After much deliberation, I decided to go with "sustainability" because I enjoy eating food (and, by extension, being alive) and think it would be a real shame if I could no longer do that in the future.
The articles I read after Googling "how to sustainability" contained radical (and frankly unreasonable) advice like "go vegan," "install a wind turbine" and "take shorter showers."
I began to wonder if "gerrymandering" would have been a better choice.
It took a great deal of self-reflection, but I decided to stick with my original strategy after realizing there was an easy way for me to save humanity from itself: locally sourcing my groceries at the Whole Foods in Brooklyn.
I know making fun of Whole Foods is about as inspired as jokes about the borough this one resides in, but I have not found anywhere else that captures the essence of Post-Hipster Brooklyn like this oasis of gentrification in a desert of rundown warehouses.
It's been a few months since I've set out on my quest to change the world with capitalism, and these are just a few of the many thoughts I've had while walking the aisles.
1. "I wonder if the workers here ever get into 'West Side Story'-style brawls with Trader Joe's employees." 2. "No child should have to grow up in a world where dried seaweed is kept in the snack aisle." 3. "Is there a way to say 'Did you vaccinate your children?' without offending someone?" 4. "Isn't a smoke-scented candle just called a candle?" 5. "Did that woman just call both of her sons Caleb?" 6. "Does the ink used to print the word 'organic' on the label have anything to do with the higher cost?" 7. "Can aluminum foil be organic?" 8. "Avocados are the kryptonite of a locally-sourced diet in NYC." 9. "Do we really have to let people know their milk is gluten free?" 10."Did that stroller have an aux cable?" 11. "I wonder how many moderately successful indie musicians I've passed without even realizing." 12. "Am I allowed to ride a Razor scooter through the aisles too or do you have to still be in elementary school?" 13. "When will I be able to buy eggs from chickens that were screened for depression and other psychological issues?" 14. "Can I use chia seeds to grow grass afros on random things or is that not how it works?" 15. "How many times can I say I 'forgot' to bring a reusable bag before they ask me to stop shopping here?" 16. "I didn't even know you could spend $87 in the express line."