This recession, or impending recession, or threat of recession, is really starting to grate on my nerves. Wonderful, loyal, hardworking people are being laid off, and stores are threatening to close. I am mourning the closing of both a local Vons and a local Albertsons. When I shop, I want choices, lots and lots of them. It’s the American way. It’s what West Berlin had that East Berlin wanted. But everywhere you turn, another business is in distress and threatening to close two-thirds of its locations. This is bad. I know where all the stores I need are now and as gas prices rocket, the last thing any of us want is to drive farther afield to get what we need.
Some of the stores on the endangered list were a complete surprise to me. Like Starbucks, for instance. Have they not seen the line at the store near me? If they close other stores, won’t that line just get longer? My draw to Starbucks is that they are so wildly convenient to find and you always get exactly what you ask for. When all the smaller coffee shops are shut up tight, catering only to the sketchy folks who get up early, we night owls have turned to Starbucks. I don’t care what the fast-food joints come up with and call a latte. I decline to stand in line behind six families with four kids under the age of 8 looking for Kiddie Meals, just to get my caffeine.
And what about Macy’s? Good grief. They cannibalized Robinsons-May. How on earth can one of the last remaining department stores be flagging? Isn’t it bad enough that we’ve also lost Buffum’s, The Broadway, Bon Marche and even Woolworth’s? I know I don’t shop the malls very often, but that doesn’t mean they are allowed to go away. In that same vein, I was bummed to see Eddie Bauer on the loser list. I am sure their catalogs will survive, but sometimes you just need to try it on first.
Even Home Depot is reportedly feeling the pinch of the sagging new home market, although you would absolutely never know it from the crowds at the one nearest me. I’m sorry for them, but delighted at the economy’s inability to add more homes to Southern California.
I have to say I wasn’t really surprised to see Krispy Kreme on the list. They were delicious when I ate them in Atlanta, but they never really tasted the same once they crossed the Mason-Dixon line. It must be something in the water.
Linens ‘n’ Things made the top 10 about-to-go-under list and I have to admit, I think it serves them right. No matter what I was looking for, they were out and never ordered more. I needed a sifter. “No, we haven’t had sifters for a long time.” Well if you’d order them, I would have bought that and 10 other things.
Heaven forefend, Toys R Us is on the list. That is so depressing. I spent a good portion of my children’s formative years walking those aisles and, again, it always had what I needed. And why is it struggling? Last time I checked, no children I know were giving up toys. I find the whole thing very puzzling.
The whole problem has me so upset, I believe I need some retail therapy. I spend to save. I am considering it my patriotic duty now and that clears my conscience nicely.
Filed Under: Small Talk