I'm a sucker for the prosaic. I will go out of my way to support small businesses, pay more for something to get it locally, and haven't stepped foot in a Wal-Mart in over a year (and they tricked me into that one…) So, it is sad news to me that one of the last real newsstands that I can think of, DeLauers in Oakland, is closing it's doors after 101 years.
It was a bizarre store, a jumble of shelves loosely organized with any magazine you cared to name. We actually used to go in there & try to find the strangest magazine/trade publication and buy it. I remember once I found a glossy full color magazine for undertakers.
One of the best things about DeLauers was it's (until recently) impressive collection of foreign magazines. It didn't just carry the biggies (Stern, Hello, etc..) you could find really interesting niche magazines there. I had no idea that different language editions of National Geographic would have different stories. I used to get the German version, and use it to practice my reading.
Look, I love the internet. I was, ironically, devising a post talking about how the internet means we all have a reference library at our fingertips (my step mom was a reference librarian for many years, and she would get asked the sort of random questions that we now just google.) I'm also a big fan of progress, but I wish we could find ways to keep some of the personal touches that were the hallmark of a bygone era. Sigh. Maybe I am getting old…
Last 5 posts by Ezra
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