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The 98 year old building I live in is a protected heritage building anomalously surrounded by the sort of overpriced condos and obscenely priced luxury residential hotels (and there is a certain irony that this building was a luxury residential hotel 98 years ago and is still zoned as such). While the building is fabulous, one of the draw-backs up until recently was there was no nearby supermarket. With new 40, 50, and even 60 storey residences going up in the neighbourhood it was inevitable that a supermarket would appear eventually. A few weeks ago one opened just two blocks away.

Given the nature of the neighbourhood (which can literally be called "Ritzy" since a building named "The Ritz" is being built on the next block over to the north, and an actual Ritz-Carlton Hotel and Residences is being built on the next block to the east) the new grocery store is the sort that panders to the over-moneyed, under-brained sort of nitwit that will buy a 800 square foot apartment for a million dollars. Vancouverites will need no explanation beyond that it is an "Urban Fare". For those reading from outside Vancouver, Urban Fare is the sort of supermarket that carries $150 square watermelons and charges $1.69 for the same potatoes Safeway or IGA sells for 99¢. Most everything in the store is organic or has some other sort of health spin to quickly part fools from their money.

I do, however, do some shopping at Urban Fare because the proximity is convenient and I haven't had a car for years now. They do, I suspect most for the sake of the marketing which likes to point out that "we sell Kraft Dinner, too", have a few things that aren't priced in excess of their value. Some of the meat isn't absurdly priced and they have good sausage, for example. Milk and pop aren't unusually priced either.

Which brings to the crux of this rant. Urban Fare sells a variety of pop, all the Coca-Cola and Pepsico products are available. They also have all manner of boxed fruit juices. They do not sell Kool-Aid. I like Kool-Aid. I'll easily drink two or three litres of it in a day. I have received flak for this from various people. Just today, because Urban Fare does not sell it I walked over to the IGA to get some. Because it's a half-mile walk and involves wading through tourist-infected streets and the gauntlet of beggars that preys on the tourists for drug-money, it's not a walk I like to do often, so I stock up with at least a week's worth - 10 packages.

Today, as has happened many times before, the cashier in seeing 10 packages of Kool-Aid makes conversation in saying, "You're buying a lot of Kool-Aid, you must have kids."

I typically reply with something along the lines of, "No, I'm just a big kid" or "I have a sweet tooth" and let it go.

The variety of flavours available at the IGA is diminishing, presumably since it isn't selling well there for the same reason it isn't available at Urban Fare: people don't think and are easily blinded by the superficial.

The commonplace impression is that Kool-Aid is full of sugar because one has to put the sugar in oneself and therefore one sees it. Made to the directions on the package, two litres of Kool-Aid has 250 ml of sugar in it. I don't like it that sweet and only use 150 ml of sugar, which puts it on par with Gatorade for sugar content.

Two litres of Cola has 850 ml.

Boxed fruit juice has between 500 ml and 1000 ml. And if you care to argue that it is fruit-sugar rather than refined sugar, think again. Unless the juice is "100% real juice" it is, in fact, about 5-10% juice topped up with 90-95% sugar water. And if it is "100%" real juice, the sugar levels are closer to that 1000 ml end of the scale. I find real fruit juice so sweet that I thin it down half-and-half with soda-water to make it palatable.

Despite the superficial appearance of my diet, on any given day I ingest about twice the water and half the sugar as the average "health conscious" nincompoop.

So there.

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