Wednesday, November 08, 2006

prototypes

Today is the Grand Opening of a brand new Wal-Mart store in our town. One of 3 new Wal-Mart "supercentres" opening today which, we are told, represent "a new concept in Canada" and of which the Stouffville store is the "prototype" - 160,000 square feet (I heard on the radio this morning that is the equivalent of 3 - or is it 4? - indoor football fields), featuring more "spacious, upscale buildings" and, at 40,000 square feet, "full-fledged grocery stores" and "one of the first Wal-Marts in Canada with LCD TVs suspended from the ceilings and showing commercials"...

Mario Pilozzi, president and CEO of Wal-Mart Canada Corp., says: "We hope Wal-Mart supercentres will become a one-stop shop that Canadians have been waiting for."

Meanwhile, a couple of fields, one main road, and a wood-lot away from the new Wal-Mart site, there was another "prototype" launched yesterday. Much smaller in scale and intention. Built on an altogether different economic model and set of assumptions. Launched with no ads, no news releases - just an e-mail sent out to a few households and churches that have chosen to participate...

More soon...

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4 Comments:

At 2:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love the prototype concept that foresees us all being the same and doing the same things - ie. shopping at Walmart. On the other hand your "new prototype", if I understand properly, besides being a redundant description, might actually be proclaiming the uniquesness of each person and the their contribution to the community. Maybe if I watch for the emergence of the next and newer prototype or version it will be clearer ... lol.

 
At 10:16 PM, Blogger Bryan Moyer Suderman said...

Good point about the redundant description... I'll edit that...

I think my "irony-detector" must have been turned off, because it took me a couple of re-reads to catch on to what you're saying... I think...

 
At 8:57 AM, Anonymous Gino said...

What about this new Walmart? My wife and son decided to 'go take a look' (not buy anything of course!). On the way in they met my mother (who was looking kind of sheepish).

Two bulldozed fields and a few dirty 'underconstruction streets' away meets Community Mennonite - trying to stay on the straight and narrow. What saith the prophet Bryan?

 
At 2:44 PM, Blogger Bryan Moyer Suderman said...

Who is this "prophet" of whom you speak...? Never heard of him... funny thing, he spells his name just like mine...

In any case, I don't think I have much to say (which I realize, of course, has seldom stopped me before)... but here's a comment or two:

- it seems to me that Wal-Mart is more a symptom than it is "the problem"... and there's no shortage of other symptoms around (including plenty in my own life)...

- I seem to recall Jesus going to all kinds of places that made some people feel "sheepish" or worse...

- In fact, as "members of the body of Christ" it seems to me that Jesus has already been walking the floors of the Stouffville Wal-Mart in the persons of your wife and son and mother... and many others as well...

Do you think it makes a difference if we are conscious of doing our shopping as "members of the body of Christ"...? Is that in tension with the identity of "consumers seeking the lowest possible price"...?

Hmmm...

 

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