Thursday, October 14, 2010

On Putting My Money Where My Mouth Is (Literally)

I mentioned a few weeks back that a new co-op is forming on Austin's east side, the quirkily named Happy Hobo.

They're desperately needed. They are building a natural foods co-op in the middle of a food desert. The area is mostly filled with convenience stores, and the larger grocery stores are literally filled with junk. (For 'educational' purposes I recently tried to buy three items at my southeast Austin local chain grocery store last weekend, and ended up walking out in frustration and disgust at my inability to find non-processed or even less-processed foods. Note that the same chain carries and distributes a range of better food options in other parts of the city.)

And personally, I'm delighted. I live on the edge of far southeast Austin, miles from the nearest (frustrating) grocery store and a 20-minute or longer drive to the nearest natural foods store. Happy Hobo is only about 10 minutes from me -- still an intentional trip, but far less of an issue. This also puts them very close to my beloved Boggy Creek Farm, which I love to visit even when I don't need veggies. It's a win/win.

The only remaining question, then, is when do I start really building the world I want to see?

Foolish and impulsive as this probably is, I think the only real answer can be: now. So, I've made a pledge to myself. First, I'm going to join this weekend, with a bit of adjusting to the month's budget. Secondly, and perhaps more foolishly -- I will meet all of my grocery and sundry needs entirely from Happy Hobo for the first year they are in business.

Now, to help them get that storefront open. If you'll excuse me, I have a membership to go buy . . .


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