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Moon Moth and Earth Cream
SH and the Crackpot Discuss Jack Vance and Groceries: 12/8/21
Tough customer!   I admit I mostly listen to audiobooks myself these days.  
I put Jack Vance's "The Moon Moth"  here , you can probably right-click-save-as
Have fun.   By the way, why can you never buy normal cream, or light cream at groceries.   Just milk, half-half, whipping cream.    I think restaurants can get it though.   One of those things.
Best
SH
I have read Jack Vance’s The Dying Earth and Amerinta Station, both excellent works, with The Dying Earth a classic of far future science fiction. One of the best short novels I have ever read [in length I think barely in that category of 7,000 to 17,000 words] was titled The Miracle Workers. I look forward to listening to a reading of this story, which SH mentioned in an earlier email involved cultic mask activity.
As for the cream, this is an item that is becoming more scarce. Depending on the location and type of grocer you are dealing with the reasons for this are the following:
The prejudice against sell plain cream is part of the milk identity crisis. I have spent hours trying to explain to old ladies that we did not get rid of “skim milk” that nonfat milk is the same thing re-labeled.
Light cream has always sold slower in stores I worked in and tended to go out of date quicker, partly because people only bought 1 at a time, where whipping cream was used in bigger batches.
With News viewers [being most of us] convinced that milk fat is a toxin by the 1970s, the people who bought light cream opted for designer coffee creamers from Jersey labs. Those who bought light cream through my career were elderly folks. Additionally, foodies, influenced by French cuisine, and buoyed in their health concerns by “the French Pardox,” wanted pure cream. So light cream was essentially replaced by half-and-half and chemistry. Even our milk consumption has been polarized into fanatic camps of opposing nutritional doctrine with fat eaters in the minority. I was always tossing out of date light cream, and the size we handled as of the early 2000s was only 8 ounces.
Labeling is a funny thing. Cream has been re-branded as “heavy whipping cream” based on the fact that it is just plain cream, but when you put heavy and whipping on the label, it sold better than the store brand next to it. So the store brand’s followed suit, imitating the Land O Lakes Butter Babe, who eventually paid for her branding sins with graphic extinction.
Some points on cream are listed below.
-Except for Thanksgiving and Christmas cream is a low demand item, that, if not rotated by the dairy clerk, is liable to go out of date. Milk case rotation is a real problem.
-When heavy cream is in demand, its low shelf pack of usually 1 row, can be bought up by one lady making pie topping or egg nog.
-Most milk cream-almost all of it—goes into the “value-added” process of ice cream making. Those two old hippies in Vermont have first dibs on cow cream. So, if there is ever a shortfall in cream production, it will go to ice cream first.
-In places like Portland, grocers stock heavy whipping cream at 25% of the slotting rate as in rural Pennsylvania and Utah, for instance. Animal fat is politically incorrect in hipsterdom. Not only does this suppress sales and result in the stuff going out of date even when rotated by the clerk, it looks like the grocer cares about the soul and heart of their deluded hipster consumer by stocking plant based creamers instead. The money behind this factory food is used to buy slots in the warehouse and retail case. Something has to go, something with low volume.
-Finally, my crackpot tendencies scream, that since sugar and carbs ignite the human appetite to gluttonous rates of consumption, that a high fat died quashes the appetite. The Grocer wants to sell carbs, because carbs sell more carbs! Sweetened items are called “value added,” because sugar is cheap and addictive—the real cocaine of America. This is one reason why I always preferred African American customers, to the point of looking the other way as each family devoured a rotissarie chicken as they shopped and threw the bones in my dairy case, sucking their fingers as they shopped—because the profits from those ten boxes of pop tarts and honey nut Os alone, offset the loss of the $4 chicken.
-Additionally, cream is being ultra pasturized more often to maintain shelf life, even the cream, I bought at Fred Myers yesterday. Ultra pasturization makes milk and cream creamier, which means light cream will not be processed this way.
Thanks for the fiction link. I will check it out some night as I sit in the dark.
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