The Sixteen-Dollar Breakfast.
There is a deli/restaurant in Washtenaw County that Sensitive Types incessantly rave about. It's heralded for its bakery, its yummy food, and its funky style and cute cartoon advertising. It's been featured on The Sensitive Radio Food Show as the jewel of Ann Arbor eateries. The foodery makes money hand over fist, it pays its employees well with good benefits and its business model has been advocated as a progressive ideal.
The only bug in the whitefish salad about this place is, well, it's expensive. Really expensive. Actually, obscenely expensive. Like thirty-dollar olive oil (it's incredible olive oil!). Or like the recent experience of a friend of mine who stopped there for a bagel with lox & cream cheese, and a side of whitefish salad. After parting with sixteen bucks, he was left with bellyache from the red onions on the sandwich and an inescapable sensation of being had.
This business model is not revolutionary nor progressive. It's the same one that P.T. Barnum employed, or that a famous magic and gag gift company used to lure your author at ten years of age into parting with his chore earnings for a box of tricks the would amaze and astound his family and friends, that would bring to the waiting world a Young Svengali. A photo in a family album records the moment of revelation after opening the box: is this it? Five bucks for this???
Then again, this may be a lesson that one periodically relearns (see previous entry).