Farmer's Market


... Without all the pesky farmers, and what the heck, without the market part, too.

On Thursday nights, there's a farmer's market in San Luis Obispo. This is actually referred to as "world famous," even though in ten years as a foodie in the Bay Area I never heard about it. The thing about this market is that it's more of a street fair than a real farmer's market: half the stalls are political, a third are restaurants selling prepared food, and a very small number actually sell produce. What produce they do sell is mostly apples (well, it is the season) with the occasional avocado or persimmon.

This evening I went down there determined to find something green to cook next week. I saw a stand of avocados, and was encouraged by their good looks, so I attempted to buy one.

"Can I give you a dollar for this?" (The sign said "Hass: $1 each" -- I wasn't bargaining or anything.)

"In fifteen minutes."

"No, seriously, can't I just pay for it now?"

"No, we don't start selling for fifteen minutes."

"I'm not going to be here then."

"We don't start selling for fifteen minutes."

So he missed out on one sale, and any possible future sales from me. I don't get why he was so busy that he could not sell me a single avocado for a single dollar for which I did not need change. It's a market, right? Every time that sort of thing happens -- when a small-time merchant refuses to take my money except on their own terms and at their own convenience -- I grow less and less concerned about the plight of the small-farm operation. Obviously, if things are so good that they can turn away business, then they don't need any farm subsidies, or special zoning protection.

Anyway, another loser market day for me. There's another market on Saturday mornings which is more likely to have real farmers and real market behaviour, but I'm going to be out of town the next couple Saturdays. Maybe I should just go to Berkeley's farmer's market. I may have to deal with Berkeley people to do it, but at least the produce is worthwhile.

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This page contains a single entry by Ayse published on October 28, 2004 7:52 PM.

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