Wednesday, May 25, 2011


The IGA business model is so adaptable. An IGA can be a 24 hour convenience store at a BP service station (Caulfield South), a 24 hour bottle shop (Windsor), and the only supermarket in the Daintree rainforest (Far North Queensland). But what makes the one on Best street, North Fitzroy so special? It has an Italian name! But white Melburnians are not obsessed with IGAs, they're just obsessed with Piedimonte's. White Melburnians need to shop there because it makes them feel less guilty for indulging in the cheap milk at Safeway. In the nineties, proto-white Melburnians would cite whatever remnants of ethnic heritage they had as a way to justify their presence at Piedimonte's. But people soon tired of hearing about great grandmothers who were one-eighth Italian so this gave way to tales of adventuring around eastern Europe (which were actually just day trips from Berlin). Because of Piedimonte's, white Melburnians have an excuse to tell you about the time they ate a spinach and fetta borek at an open air market in Sofia. This is a big deal for Melbourne white people as they are used to eating Bulgarian fetta from Safeway.

So if you're new to Melbourne, do not describe the location of your place in terms of its proximity to Zagames. Use Piedimonte's. It's a culturally appropriate spatial reference point. It doesn't matter that Zagames is very prominent or the fact everybody knows where it is. It doesn't even matter that Piedimonte's is fast becoming redundant as a spatial reference point because everybody claims to live nearby. Use it anyway! You might get lost, but you'll still have friends.


  1. I'm waiting for the entry on A1 bakery Brunswick...

  2. Haha I went to school with the girl who's family owns that store.