Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Say It Ain't So

When I saw the news that Barnes & Noble is planning to close more stores in the years ahead, I had the same reaction that I did when all of the B. Dalton stores closed, and it wasn't a happy one.

Of all of the memories I have of the 1990s, working for B. Dalton and then Barnes & Noble is up there, and for good reason. There's nothing better than letting a shoplifter go when you've outsmarted them. Trust me, catching a shoplifter and then letting them go without calling Johnny Law is the best thing you can do in this life. It's a combination of being brilliant and merciful all at once.

I also worked for a defunct video store chain called Title Wave as well--those were good times. I preferred working for those stores to my full time gig at the time. But, that was the 90s. You didn't just have one job, you had two, and if at least one of those jobs was a decent one, well, you were lucky.

Barnes & Noble isn't going to survive, and anyone who buys a Nook is crazy. I'm sorry, that's counterintuitive in some ways, but it's the truth. I just don't see them having a bricks and mortar future even though people probably do prefer buying books that way. It's all about saving a buck or a half an hour or getting what you want in the mail as opposed to having to go look for it. That's what we've evolved into.

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