Use The Farmers’ Market Manners God Gave You
Every Sunday, when I lived in Baltimore, I would suck it up and go to the Farmers’ Market under the 83 South bridge (Jones Falls Expressway) a few blocks from where I lived at about 8 am. I’m not really that much of a morning person, but I really enjoy going to the farmers” market. However, I am a person that is easily annoyed by the stupidity and ignorance of others. Now you may be thinking that those two words are the same – well they’re not- stupidity is the person that pretends to not know that $5 means $5 and ignorance is the person who’s shocked and aghast and throws a temper-tantrum that the eggs are more expensive than those at the Grocery Store. So here is a list of things you should keep in mind when at the Famers” Market…
Keep sticker shock to yourself. Whining about the price is less common than it was a few years ago. I’ve seen some customers harangue stall-holders – “They want to know why the peppers cost so much less at Costco. They really seem to take the price personally.” My response is simple – “Because you moron, Costco gets how many more peppers in bulk, than a local farmer, shut up and buy it”
Don’t be a buzzard. It might seem reasonable to expect a deal at the end of the day, when farmers may want to offload all their produce before it spoils. But if farmers need to knock down their prices, they will already have done so.
Don’t block the aisle. This is the most consistently annoying thing about customers” behavior. Couples walking through the market run into old friends, get talking, run into a few more friends, and soon there’s a clump of people completely blocking the farmer’s stand. So try to be more aware of your positioning when you stop to gossip.
Don’t squeeze and grab everything in sight. This is the thing that drives me absolutely crazy. It’s not a fucking squeezy toy. Produce at the farmers’ market is a lot more fragile than wax-coated apples at the local grocery store. Much of the fruit that can be found in the local grocery stores are picked under-ripe so it can ripen during transport or storage, farmers at the market have often harvested their produce when it is at its prime, so it is soft and easily bruised. Furthermore, overhandling the merchandise is unsanitary, and inappropriate in these germ-phobic times. Do you want to have produce that someone else has squeezed near death and put up to their nose to smell? In Europe, you would get your hand slapped right away if you started fondling all the fruit.
Control your kids. I know, I know, this is an obvious one, but just as some parents let their kids rage out of control in restaurants, they also turn a blind eye as the youngsters mix up signs, knock produce on the ground, or stuff it in their mouths. Parents, do your job! Grab a hold of your bad-ass kid and keep them under control.
Oh yeah and by the way, it doesn’t hurt to say Please, Thank You or you’re Welcome!‘, ‘use the farmers’ market manners God gave you…