Today I paid $7.32 for a bowl of salad.
I know you're sitting in front of your computer right now thinking, "You're fucking with me, Will. There's no way a store would have the cajones to charge $7.32 for a bowl of salad. Show me some proof!"
I work in an office one block away from Union Square Park in downtown New York City. Everybody knows that New York City is an expensive place to live, but this is ridiculous.
Most of my co-workers don't take a lunch hour. They go out, buy lunch, bring it back to the office and eat at their desks. And every day I see people I work with walking in with these bags that say Chop't Creative Salad Company. So today I decided to go and check the phenomenon that is Chop't Creative Salad Company.
I get to Chop't at 2 PM, which is still sort of luch hour. There's a line out the door. I wait on this line for about ten minutes and finally I get up to the counter and see the price list. A regular salad STARTS at $6.95. And if you want chicken or shrimp or whatever the fuck else they put in salads it will cost you more money. A lot more money.
"How can they charge MORE THAN $7 for something that costs like two cents?" I wonder to myself. And then I figured it out. It's the labor.
Maybe you think making a bowl of salad is a one-man job. HA! Chop't Creative Salad Company laughs at your leafy green ignorance!
At Chop't Creative Salad Company, the art of making a bowl of salad is a FIVE MAN JOB!
The first guy takes your order. The second guy puts it in a bowl. The third guy cuts it up - excuse me - he chops it up. The fourth guy puts on the dressing. And the fifth guy takes your money.
It's an assembly line of salad making!
I imagine there is a sixth guy somewhere, laughing at all the stupid idiot New Yorkers who line up in the cold for ten minutes to pay $7.32 for a bowl of salad. But I didn't see that guy. He's probably in the back counting the money, wondering how long this scam will last.
Look, everybody knows that, in a Post-9/11 world, salad making has changed. It used to be, you buy a head of lettuce, cut it up with a knife (or your hands), pour on a little Hidden valley Ranch and then eat it. One man job.
NOT ANY MORE! Now it takes five guys. Excuse me, five salad artisans.
But the third guy is the key to the whole process. Sure you can get salad anywhere. But only at Chop't Creative Salad Company do they chop the salad using a double-bladed mezzaluna knife.
Why? Because, according to the Chop't website, chopped salad is "fun."
And we all know that fun is not free! It's $7.32.
I know people who go to Chop't every day for lunch. If they buy the cheapest salad available they are paying almost $2,000 a year for salad. These are the same people who wonder why they are always broke.
As for me, I'm going to get me one of them fancy, double-bladed mezzaluna knives ($24.99 at Cooking.com) and make my own fun - for about two cents day.
Then I can take the $2,000 I save and spend it on something worthwhile - like gambling!
I found out today that I will be returning to Las Vegas in June to work on the production of a pharmaceutical product launch! The countdown has begun..
So go spend $2,000 on fun salad, New York. My idea of fun is a little bit different.