Paved Paradise - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1825580

Paved Paradise

Well, I finally broke down and went shopping at the Westhampton Beach Lidl, and I must say I was even more depressed, angry and nostalgic than I could ever have anticipated.

The shelves of this cold, lifeless chain of joyless marketing are as lacking in everyday necessities as their name is vowels. (No, Mr. Lidl, sun-dried tomatoes are not a gourmand extravagance.) The space itself is more suited to a manufacturing clean room than a local market. At every turn, I expected to see white paper-suited workers in latex gloves and goggles pushing sterilized plastic carts of canned meats alongside trays of microchips and mega-factory-produced “craft” beer. This insentient haven for corporate zombies makes Target look like a bespoke haberdashery.

Where Best Market had ambiance, charm, selection and excitement, Lidl has substituted cold despair and mock Nutella. Even from the outside this market’s tacky plastic yellow sign looks like a bureaucrat’s tribute to 1960s German minimalism.

If an apathetic behemoth like Lidl is granted free rein to sweep across eastern Long Island like a famished plague of corporate locusts, greedily devouring every bit of charm and delight in its path, we might as well give up and sit at home eating frozen TV dinners and sugar-free wine while watching reruns of “The Price is Right.”

They’ve paved paradise and put up a forensic pathology lab.

David D’Agostino