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We're all guilty of being impressionistic in our own ways. We form prejudices, both good and bad, as a type of filter that helps us make wholesale choices: speaker types, cable types, media types and, of course, everything else like food, mates, cars and where we live. I was in the supermarket deciding on which type of cracker I shouldn't buy and spied a familiar label: Back to Nature. Well, hell, I'm a healthy guy–or at least I like to think I make healthy food choices–and a cracker taking me back to nature seemed the least guilty choice on the shelf. The irony that no junk food gets us back to nature never occurred to me. Later that night with a glass of red wine and a plate full of my natural crackers, I became suspicious. These crackers tasted identical to the un-natural crackers I am used to and so I did some reasearch. Aha! Should have known it. Back to Nature is owned by Kraft Food of Velveeta processed cheese spread, Jello-O and Nabisco fame. Couldn't have turned my stomach more than if it had been owned by Monsanto! And yet... was it just my prejudice against big companies selling processed food, or was it valid? I harbor many prejudices in the audio industry and they are widespread, ranging from brands I believe don't care about sound quality, to those passionate. I am perhaps the most prejudiced person I know. But is that a bad thing? Seems the longer I am on this planet the more I realize we all have pretty set ideas of right and wrong, good and bad. It's just in our nature.
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Paul McGowan

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