High and Hungry at the Hip New Affordable Whole Foods

Affordable organics? I need to be stoned for this.

On Wednesday, Whole Foods introduced a new, more affordable iteration of their organic khaki grocery chain: 365 by Whole Foods Market. According to their website, the stores “offer convenience and everyday low prices on natural and organic products that meet the company’s industry-leading standards for quality.” Naturally, the flagship pantry debuted in Silver Lake, a Neutra-ass, Subarus and seltzer neighborhood in Los Angeles. 

As The KIND is wont to do, we decided to get lit and check it out—dedicated to covering all new beacons of commerce and culture in this modern age, appropriately toasted. 

I approached the steely facility after a medium amount of bong rips and realized the last time I’d been in this parking lot I was drinking coolers by Bartles & Jaymes in my roommate's car after packing it in at the Cha Cha Lounge. Things were quite different now. A militant parking guide quickly cut short my nostalgic daydreaming and struck a stressful parking anxiety deep within my heart. I said fuck it and went back out onto the main street and found an open parking meter with 50 minutes left. Truly blessed.

Nobody moves slower than cared-for white people shopping for food while well-fed.

As I walked to the entrance, throngs of people poured in and out of the store, or mingled and relaxed in spots designed for mingling and relaxing. The place was packed. I had come here on a half-baked idea for an article, but who on this stupid earth would eagerly swim this opening day crowd for lower-priced quinoa? It seemed absurd and masochistic. What did Shakespeare say about a Trader Joe’s by any other name?

I ventured to make a quick lap through the bustling, mechanical feeling warehouse of food. Quick, unfortunately, it wouldn’t be. Nobody moves slower than cared-for white people shopping for food while well-fed.

I came to a salad corridor. I’m pretty sure this was a plot point in that movie Sunshine starring Cillian Murphy. Behold, the entrance to the salad corridor, it beckoned me...

Here I was, deep inside the corridor of salad.

It was marked by awfulness.

The staff, like soldiers prepared for a beach landing, were seriously hard at work. I appreciated them, and wholly felt bad about the unpleasantness of the majority of the clientele the workers had to deal with this hectic opening day. Odd fashions abounded. Looky-loos and nitpickers crowded the sterile arteries. Cute mothers with cute children failed to efficiently cart.

The thicket of meandering bodies was giving me anxiety. The interior design was rigid, plastic, some twisted, unfeeling Milton Glaser look creating the effect that I were some colorful lab rat. Did I smoke too much pot? A sign informed me it was “all good.”

Conveniently placed above a selection of wine, the opiate of this demo’s masses. Nice try, capitalism. But then I noticed a bar. The desire for a field beer just nearly trumped the chip on my shoulder preventing me from ordering one here:

I thought maybe I should try some of the prepared food, in the name of investigation and in the name of not eating lunch yet and ripping three bowls of White Fire OG on the way over. Alas, the line was too daunting to conquer so I promptly left.

On the way home I thought, Why is it that some grocery stores feel like home and other’s like a war? I don’t know, man, they’re just grocery stores. Ha. Just grocery stores. Sure, Alan.