Dandy recently got some great coverage in the Orlando Sentinel about our socially consciously approach to doing business. We are grateful for the positive recognition from the media, and it also gives us permission to address a commonly made, but inaccurate assumption. Many believe our patrons are a caricature of liberalism (whatever that is) but the truth is we have a really diverse clientele which includes lots of so-called “conservative” people mixed right in with everyone else. Just like we don’t think liberal is a bad word, neither do we think conservative is. The loudest voices in America depict a battle between ideologies, which gives the illusion that regular people are at odds with one another. If we believe those words, it becomes true. Our experience day in and day out with both conservative and liberal folks is people don’t really care too much about the differences, no one here is looking for a fight. We all just want to eat good food together and live with less friction, and so we do, pretty darn happily.
When we are engaged with folks in our cafe, we don’t see a conservative or a liberal. We see: people. People with great taste in food. People who are creative, thoughtful, friendly. Family people, professional people, artistic people, young people, old people. Some people who are like me, and lots of people have very different backgrounds and interests than I do. These people make my world more colorful, thought provoking and interesting. It is a mistake to think that liberals are the only ones who eat organic or vegetarian or care about the environment, community or other designated “liberal” concerns. I like to joke that the “left & right” meet at the health food stores, the midwife and our cafe. This is the new middle ground, and we all have something in common: community, good food and a sense of place.