Shopping in New York, Part 1

New York City has this reputation as a shopper’s paradise, a place where the consumer’s version of Rule 34 of the Internet has been realized: if it exists, there is a place to buy it in New York City.

That is, unless the “it” in question happens to be food coloring.

Several months ago, Sean and I were in desperate need of some food coloring, you know, to make fake blood for a zombie movie … what else do you use food coloring for in NYC? … cake baker….


You wouldn’t think food coloring would be that hard to find in NYC, but wherever we happened to look, well, we just could not find it. It was completely frustrating for both of us, because we could think of many places back in Alaska where we were sure we could find some, which of course didn’t help at all. In fact, it just pissed us off more. Sean was finally able to find some organic stuff at a fancy-schmancy supermarket in Manhattan. It cost $18.00. For food coloring. Really.

Fast forward to last week. I walked down to this little market that’s about a block away from our place. There, in this big stack by the check out counter, was a whole display of McCormick products: spices, extracts … and yes … FOOD COLORING!! I stood there a while, just looking, then fished my handy and ubiquitous iPhone out of my bag and took a picture.

Side note: I wonder what all the local merchants think about me: that crazy chick who takes pictures of random packages of food in their stores. Don’t think that the food coloring and the Egg Nog incidents were the only times I’ve done such a thing. I wonder if they have meetings about me. I wonder if they have hastily drawn sketches taped behind the counter, saying that I am a “person of interest.”

Because that would be cool.

Back to the food coloring. Being the resourceful person I am, I bought a box. You never know when you’re going to need some fake blood, at least in our household.

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