Just a little tearful here for when shopping used to be, you know, enjoyable. What used to be a fun day off from the drudgery of work and school seems to have become a competitive shopping event for people who, as Oscar Wilde once observed, "know the price of everything and the value of nothing." Here's a tip: You are not defined by your possessions. Don't get me wrong-like any normal guy I've got needs: What man doesn't swoon at the idea of owning a hand made guitar, a finely-crafted firearm or a well-honed blade? You know, guy stuff. But, like my beloved 30-year old Polk Audio Monitors, surplus Department of Defense vintage desk (I'm sitting at it now, and it was free!), and cherished collection of hand-me-down tools, you won't find any of these things at Wal-Mart or Target, no matter how early you get up.
We had plenty of local or regional stores to drop some coin in when I was coming up in the Toledo/Detroit/A2 area, and none of them asked us to get up at 3:00 in the morning and behave like idiot.
The big three for our family were Hudson's (Detroit), Lion (Toledo based, but owned by Mercantile Stores Company, Inc. of Cincinnati) and Jacobson's (Jackson, Mi). Then we'd hit the trifecta of Toledo-owned specialty retailers, Hobby Center Toys, Athletic Supply, and Jamiesons Audio. A quick stop at Churchill's Adventure Shop and Boogie Records and we were done. Of the three, only Jamiesons is still in operation, although their core business model has evolved to focus on home theater.
The vintage charge cards displayed here are mine, pulled from my desk drawer this morning.
PS: If the Magi had only risen a few hours earlier and braved the post thanksgiving day crush of humanity in the village marketplace, they could have saved big on the gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Jerks.
**Lion Store, Hudsons, Jacobson's, Black Friday**