Sunday, November 27, 2011

Bookless Black Friday

This Thanksgiving weekend I visited my family in Philadelphia and made the mistake of driving to the King of Prussia Plaza on Black Friday. I hadn't been there in two years and it can be fun. At least it was. What a madhouse. Finding a parking spot was the biggest challenge, now they have sections of the lot blocked off for valet parkng by the big dept. stores like Neiman Marcus. Once I hiked from my spot to the main plaza, I wanted to look at the book stores. They even had a comic book store there the last time I went.

There was a mall worker at the map and he asked if he could help me. "Yes, where are the bookstores?"
"We don't have any here, sir." he said. "We burned them all down, books are Communists," he added as a joke.

"Really," I replied with surprise. "There used to be like four or five."

"Yeah, but they're all gone," he admitted dropping the humorous angle. "Sorry."

I was amazed. The Plaza is huge and one of the major shopping outlets in the country, but no bookstores. I asked about a Best Buy so I could at least look at DVDs, there was one but I would have to drive to it. There was nothing but clothes and housewares in the plaza itself. I guess it's a sign of the times, how long before you can only get your books from the Kindle or Nook. I left that godless nightmare out of Farhenheit 451 to the Barnes and Noble near my parents'. I didn't buy anything, but I liked just being there.

The next day, Jerry and I drove to Philadelphia and wandered around South Street which had several bookstores including Atomic City Comics where I bought the new I Zombie, two Supermans and a Superboy.

Before we drove to South Street, my mother told me she found a Flintstones jelly glass from when I was a kid. It had a stencil of Fred hunting while a saber-toothed tiger sneaks up behind him. I said it was probably worth $10-$20. She gave it to me. The copyright said 1964. I didn't remember the specific glass, but I recalled Fred and Wilma pushing Welch's grape jelly and juice.

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