Whole Foods Market on Third Street
June 30, 2007
Whole Foods Market has lost a regular customer because I’ve decided to no longer shop at their stores.
There’s actually a farmers’ market on Sundays near where I live, but I had forbidden myself to go and spend cash there. My rule was: Buy organic stuff only at Whole Foods because you can use your credit card and accumulate points. I also hate handling dirty bills and the hassle of storing the change you get back. With a card, you swipe and you’re done!
But yesterday at Whole Foods they asked me for identification when I used my credit card. I hate that almost as much as being addressed as a Mrs. I wouldn’t mind being asked for ID if the white guys I’m with are ever asked for ID when they pay. But they’re never. Only me in my barrio clothes when I’m alone! I mean, really, don’t make me feel like I fit the profile of a person who’d use a stolen credit card to pay for a ten-dollar purchase.
Later I called management to ask about their policy. A boy answered the phone, and when I requested to be forwarded to someone in charge of the issue, he said he was. He nonchalantly informed me that they need to make sure I owned the card. When I pressed him about this not being applied to everyone, he said they actually don’t ask for ID if the card is signed. My card is signed, so why was I asked for ID? He mumbled something about a rule change a month ago that the clerks hadn’t heard about yet. (Sure…The universal script: The clerk didn’t know. Well, why didn’t the clerk ask the person ahead of me for ID?) “So will you tell the clerks about this ‘rule change’ now?” “Yeah…” he replies. I sarcastically proffer my thanks. The twerp didn’t even know to apologize for the clerk inconveniencing me.
From now on I’ll be buying fruit and vegetables at the farmers’ market. The organic yogurt and other stuff, I’ll get at Trader Joe’s, which is actually closer to where I live than Whole Foods. The staff at Trader Joe’s are really nice — easy-going and not stuck-up or smug. The only reason I haven’t been a regular patron is because it’s more than a few blocks away from the Grove. Whole Foods was convenient because I could just cross the street after a movie or shopping trip.
But no more! I will make walking to Trader Joe’s part of my exercise routine.
UPDATE: I’ve since discovered Erewhon behind the Grove! I now shop for groceries at Trader Joe’s, Erewhon and the Korean supermarkets. Yes, this is Los Angeles and we’ve got choices. Say no to these Fortune 500 companies like WFMI. Shop at your local stores!