39 thoughts on “June 19, 2017

  1. This guy is me. I remember our local mall back in the 80s had a lot of great stores that are long since gone.

    Osaka, which was a Spencer-esque gift store minus the adult stuff. (They also had imported candies) Kay Bee Toys (The only place back then to buy Nintendo games). So Fro Fabrics, which sold art and craft supplies. Then there was KarmelKorn, which sold a dozen or more flavors of fresh popped popcorn. And then you had Hickory Farms in an actual storefront, not some kiosk that only shows up at Christmas time.

    I also remember a Singer sewing machine store.

    • Ah, KarmelKorn, I remember them well. Haven’t seen one in ages. They had the original ‘triple mix’ popcorn (butter, cheese, and caramel), and they didn’t skimp on the caramel. Mighty tasteh…..

      • Houston Trunk Company for the best (& hard to find) luggage, Wicks & Sticks Candles (LONG before Yankee Candle), Oshman’s Sporting Goods/Apparel, B Dalton Bookseller, Banana Republic (before they became a yuppie outfitter) to name a few.

    • Ah Borders. I went in there every week to browse the CD listening stations. Got some of my collection that way. Listening to 30 second snippets at home isn’t the same.

  2. Empty storefronts? Sounds like the mall this takes place in is in serous trouble.

    Yeah, I do wish we could go back to the mall of the 80’s.

    • @BoardWorker

      Norm has hinted a couple of times that the mall that Grumble’s is at is not doing that great. It would be interesting to see what would happen if it was announced the mall was closing and where the cast would go from there. However that would probably be the end of the series.

        • I stopped reading that a while back when I culled through my daily comics and some had to go. I didn’t like the Carlos (q) and Monica characters.

          • While I’m still reading “Tina”, it seemed like the writing took a change in the last few months. I found it less interesting. Perhaps Rina had run out of restaurant jokes.

      • It’s possible that the mall could basically close, but the big stores that “anchor” the mall (in this case, Grumbel’s and Delman’s) could remain open. (I’m assuming that, like just about every similar store I’ve seen, they have entrances both from inside the mall and directly to the parking lots, or are close enough to a main mall entrance that “closing off” the rest of the mall would be feasible.) (That actually happened to a mall near where I worked for a while; the mall itself closed, but one end had a Kohl’s and the other a supermarket, both of which remained open for quite a while afterwards.)

      • @the guy,

        True, but there’s a difference between “not doing great” and to still have empty storefronts where 6 significant tenants had closed years before. In the malls in my area, all those stores have been replaced by something else.

      • We have a local mall that closed a few years ago, but the anchor stores stayed open. They announced that the Sears is closing this week, which wasn’t a surprise. Like most of them, this one has been struggling for years.

        The same story. I used to go to that mall all the time, but had the usual reasons to stop: Too much traffic in the area, better prices elsewhere and as stores closed there was less and less interesting places to shop.

        “Progress”, I suppose. But it used to be a fun place to go. Which probably shows me up too much as a consumer.

  3. Bookstore: Victim of Amazon.

    Art Supply/Hobby: Victims of changing times/online

    Toy Shop: Victim of Walmart/Target

    Piano: LOL, Cragslist’s Free Section

    Luggage: Now a storefront of an Outlet Mall about 2 hours outside of town.

    • Bookstore: Yeah, Amazon I guess, plus most YouTube celebrities offer free Audible subscriptions.

      Art/Hobby Supply: Can find things much cheaper at the dollar store.

      Toy Store: I’m too old to play with toys and I hate children. I do collect figures, but most of them are Asian imports anyway.

      Piano: Standalone music stores do exist, and the chances of me buying an instrument are much higher there. I have never felt the need to impulse-buy a large/expensive instrument at the mall.

      Luggage: LOL, I only ever carry a backpack when I travel.

    • From what I’ve seen of outlet malls as I drive to nearby cities, they’re in even worse shape than local malls.

    • Looks like it’s going to be one-shots this week. Which is fine; a break from the storyline is good. I just hope it doesn’t last longer than, say, two weeks.

      Hint hint, Norm. Hint hint. 🙂

  4. SoFro! I bought a lot of fabric there. Joann’s has pretty much taken over the fabric market, which is a shame. It you couldn’t find what you wanted *here*, they might have it *there*.

    FWIW, I don’t buy much online. Clothing never quite fits, and products are not always as advertised Besides, if I’m in a real store, I just might see something else I like, and purchase that, too.

  5. I’m like this about certain places too. I may have been somewhere, a store or a restaurant and liked it, but for some reason did not return, maybe just wasn’t in that area of town or never got around to it. Then I hear they’ve closed and I feel a bit guilty since I’m one of the people who meant to go back and patronize them regularly and never got around to it.

    • I wouldn’t feel guilty if I were you. While I regret the loss of jobs (even in places where customer service was lousy), no one is obligated to shop anywhere, much less buy anything. I find it annoying to see articles about millenials “killing” industries. If that group doesn’t find new cars or eating in restaurants a good use of their money, not their problem.

      It’/s the responsibility of businesses to provide a product/service people want. In your case, apparently they didn’t.

  6. The Malls in our area have all been updated and are very nice. True they have new stores, but they also have different eating options, many many charging stations, and comfortable chairs to relax in if you are not in a hurry or doing a lot of shopping.

  7. One place I worked inside a mall at people kept asking where the elevator inside the store was. I had been there almost two years at that point and so I asked the store manager. She said there hadn’t been an elevator for around nine years. Of course the customer flipped their shit and screamed how they had been in there only a few months ago. Sure, buddy, sure.

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