This meatloaf and various side dishes, served at Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee, was allegedly a favorite of Elvis.
I ask you, does this dish look fit for a king?
Which doesn't quite bring me to the subject at hand. Back in 2009, Minneapolis St. Paul Magazine (mspmag.com) ran a story about a guy named Glenn Ford of Praxis Marketplace. Click here for a PDF image of that story.
Ford was planning a chain of grocery stores which would be a source of "jobs, pride, power, community renewal, particularly in ethnic urban communities." The article said Ford was planning to open the first Praxis Marketplace in North Minneapolis.
At the time this article appeared, I thought to myself, huh? Who is this guy Glenn Ford? Is he for real? Is he going to do what he promises or is he a flim flam artist? I ripped the article out of the magazine and had it on my fridge for the longest time. For a while my fridge was a source of long-term "to do" lists.
Eventually, I took the article off the fridge and made it into a PDF file, which has been floating on my virtual desktop for a couple years, now. I look at the icons on my desktop and there's the little face of Glenn Ford, holding three bell peppers and touting his vision of grocery stores.
Today I'm snowed in and writing stuff that will auto-publish in the middle of the day on Monday. I can approach stories that have sat upon my mental back burner for a while, cooking.
So today it's time to ask the question, "Where are the Praxis Marketplace stores promised in 2009 by Glenn Ford?"
Ford, you see, has a vision...
...(and I think it's a positive vision) of a chain of grocery stores that would go where the other chain stores fear to tread, into the heart of the hood. Though Ford didn't say so, directly, it seemed like he was aiming to replace the dirty, poorly-stocked and crime ridden "inconvenience stores" that dot the inner city landscape and put something positive there.
Well, it's 2012. Soon it will be 2013. The article I'm referencing was written in 2009.
Where are the Praxis Marketplaces?
The profile of Praxis on the internet is very limited. There's a Twitter account which hasn't actually sent a tweet, click here. In June of this year, an extensive article was written in Finance and Commerce about how Ford was proposing a grocery store on vacant land near Penn and Plymouth, click here.
Ford spoke at Macalester College in 2011 and an announcement about the event had a biography of Ford which described Praxis Marketplace as "emerging." I think that word "emerging" means something like, "Doesn't actually exist, yet, but oh, there are hopes and dreams."
Does Ford actually operate a grocery store that really exists? Anywhere? With groceries? At any time since 2009?
And where does Ford plan to obtain the money to open these Praxis Marketplace grocery stores? Public money? Foundation money? Borrowed money? His own money?
This story flashed across my awareness in 2009. Four years (going on five) is a long time for this blogger to keep silent and not raise a question.
Glenn Ford? Where are the grocery stores? And who do you propose will pay for your grocery stores to be built in North Minneapolis?