Sushi and Kroger’s New Marketplace: Works of art often come from modifying nature

It’s true, I have a thing for sushi. I appreciate the warrior’s way that food can be created in a raw form to defy necessity and turn the experience into art. The way the food is prepared with the fine work of a knife and is placed into a composition of edible delight is something I never get tired of eating or observing. And so it has been often at my house, a nice football game has been on through the Holidays and I have wanted sushi, only the Kroger Marketplace that was supposed to be built at the end of my street has been stalled out for a few years leaving me without a proper outlet. Much to my relief, a good friend of mine sent me the article after a lot of asking on my part, letting me know that construction had resumed, and that the wonderful 133,868 square foot store was moving along once again. The reason that is such important news is that Kroger Marketplaces always have great sushi outlets. I use the one in West Chester several times a week for a sushi run. But that is a little far for me for those spur of the moment trips, so this news has been great.

I understand some of my neighbors are not crazy about the idea of the new Kroger. They have had views along RT 4 for many decades of empty farm fields in that location that look out for many miles in every direction. The Kroger location is a fine piece of land and my wife wasn’t crazy about the idea of a new Kroger being built there. After all, just down the road just over one mile was a 57,000 square foot facility that supplied everything you could want. Only for me, for decades, it was just too small of a store. I avoid going there because its just too cramped, I need some elbow room when I want to get some sushi. So learning that a new Kroger Marketplace was going to be built even closer to me and that I could run there to get sushi during a halftime intermission without missing any of a game was an absolute delight to learn.

I love nature and obviously Japanese culture is very heavily steeped in it, which sushi reflects. But I do like how the Japanese look to incorporate nature into their everyday life. That is evident when you visit their country, they are very creative people and have found ways to join nature to construction in ways that are very satisfying to their society. For them its not an “either or” scenario, its just a necessity. They don’t view preserving nature as a defiance to capitalism, quite the opposite. But we have allowed ourselves in America to have the definition of preservation established as a resistance to construction. The suggestion that an empty field has more value to nature than a booming metropolis of 133,000 square feet of food options of all kinds has been the established norm, which is a notion I reject.

Also near my home just a bit to the west of the wonderful Elk Run Golf Course is a new Kentucky Friend Chicken that I also welcomed, along with a brand new Burger King. I see all such places built as acts of creation and I love them every time they open. I love wide open spaces too, and nature. I live where I do because I get both in a kind of sushi like existence. There are great parks, great open vistas, and there are great capitalist enterprises everywhere. I can literally get a bucket of chicken to eat, any hardware I need to repair my house, and even get a new heavy-duty hitch for a truck within a half a mile of each other. Then spend a day playing golf across the street. I often said before President Trump was elected that we would know the strength of the national economy by whether or not Kentucky Fried Chicken would build a free-standing outlet near my home, because its sort of in between other locations. Obviously with the Dow hitting 29,000 in just three years of the Trump presidency the Kentucky Fried Chicken opened just before the New Year and it was right on target. A good economy is an opportunity for many creative people to do things and that is what I see every time a new enterprise is erected, and I never get tired of watching new businesses open. I like the entertainment options, but more than that, I like seeing an economy come alive as a new living thing.

The centerpiece of a great economy is the luxury of having so many options, such as being able to get fresh sushi cut nearly in front of you while a football halftime show is commencing. Only the vast resources of a Kroger Marketplace can cut through the opposition of nature to tame it to the degree that such a thing is even possible. And that is why I am excited for this new retail development. Developers are not blights on the surface of the earth, rather like the Japanese who compose nature into a beautiful symphony of food with sushi, every new enterprise built by some mind using capitalism to advance their cause is taking raw material and making a work of art out of it that expands our economy and that is one of the most beautiful things in the world.

Its true, a wide-open field is beautiful too, to see food being grown on it from a fresh spring planting is wonderful. But it’s not an either-or thing for me. I typically wouldn’t eat a fresh fish right out of a lake caught that morning, but when it is put together with the context of sushi, then I will. There are many states of nature and to me building something new is one of them. Taking something like land in its raw form and turning it into a place that has multiple beers, chips, meats and of course sushi is an amazing achievement. And to give shoppers the kind of elbow room that makes them comfortable while they are there is even better. I personally can’t wait for the opening of this new Kroger Marketplace. I will go there a lot.

While some of the neighbors in the area are still sore that they are losing their view of an empty field from their windows to be replaced by a parking lot full of cars, I think they are only seeing part of the story and need to open their eyes to the nature of the achievement. The nature is still there but like sushi, humans have taken it and carved it into what they truly desire. Construction is a work of art and creation, not a blight on nature. Its an extension of it. A parking lot is still that open field, only now people have something to do except just look at it and think of the worms, ground hogs and mosquitos that otherwise would inhabit it in a raw form. They are still there, but now there is sushi and people who are good at making it. And that is a miracle of human achievement all by itself.

Rich Hoffman

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