life in the fresh lane at cultures

Vintage Ad #1,111: Life in the Fresh Lane

Maybe it's me, but something in our office drone/rising executive's expression suggests he'd rather have anything other than quiche for lunch. He doesn't care if it's a macrobiotic meal or a fat, juicy hamburger with extra bacon and cheese. He wants something that won't make him a poster boy for 1980s "fresh food" clichés. If I'm wrong, and he can't wait to tear into his coffee, quiche and salad, then perhaps his pdd look betrays thoughts of "has the d@*m picture been taken yet?"

For readers having trouble deciphering the green text to the left of the diner, here's what your eyes are failing to register:

Free of one big worry. Eating right without wasting time. Where else can you choose from superb salads, quiches, soups and sandwiches and be at your table in minutes? No one has to give up fresh to get fast.

Cultures was the healthiest option when the food court opened at Windsor's Devonshire Mall in the 1980s. Mom frequently ordered their food while Amy and I ran off to seek other forms of fast food. That location is long gone, as are most locations outside of the GTA and scattered spots across the rest of the country. Based on sideways glances over the years, the visual appeal of Cultures food went downhill over time, which may have been one reason for the chain's decline (though their website touts a revival in fortunes). One item I continued to stop for: soft-serve frozen yogurt, usually the vanilla/strawberry twist, which has a tang that indicates the presence of a bacterial culture.

Cultures's website touts the bright look of their current locations. I haven't been up by the large eatery in the Toronto Eaton Centre for awhile to see if it has become a sunnier dining spot, but the dark lighting and feeling of empty space it had for a long time gave off sad vibes. It felt like the sort of place where the man in the ad might have stayed in the fresh lane only as long as it took to order his meal and flee back to his office.

Source: Macleans, June 26, 1989 - JB


Amy said…
Is it just me or does he look like a young, bespectacled Michael Douglas?

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