Closed Borders

Like many, I was sad to hear that the national book-store chain Borders was going out of business due to bankruptcy. Not that I visit Borders often…I used to. In fact, every book I bought used to come from Borders. One Christmas, i did all my shopping at the local Borders (’cause I’m that creative). But then I entered college and saw the need to penny-pinch and so places like Amazon and Half-Priced Books became closer friends. What i hate about the Borders closing, though, is that it’s a sign of what’s to come. Namely, everything is going digital–including books. I hate this because I’m old-fashioned. For what it’s worth, I’ll now quickly give my review of what may be the last time I ever visited Borders.

When I first entered I was taken aback a little by the amount of dignity the store had lost. It was no longer a casual atmosphere of people moving around politely to find books…it was more like a thrift store or Walmart…or Gap Outlet where it’s push and shove and dodge. It was like the news of Borders’ downfall brought out all the leeches who wanted to suck the store dry. Perhaps the biggest loss of dignity I found was that the public restrooms were closed. I was sad because those bathrooms saved my life once or twice. But I digress…

What drew me in initially was the email they sent out saying that stuff was up to 40% off (emphasis mine, not theirs). So I went in and found mostly everything 10-20%…in fact, the only thing that I found 40% off was large print books…and every Joel Osteen title (kidding). This is slightly false advertising in my mind and leaves a little bit of a bad taste in my mouth. Oh sure, they’ll try and get every penny they can, but I think this tactic further shows the loss of dignity suffered by the store. (in fairness, they’ve since sent out another email clarifying which genres are a certain percentage off…they regained some dignity)

I believe my first Borders book was Uncle Tom’s Cabin and my last two may be Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis and St. Francis of Assisi by Chesterton (both 20% off), which i mentioned in my last post. So like i said, the loss of Borders is sad for me not necessarily for loss of a favorite store, but moreso loss of principle..what it represents as a physical bookstore selling physical books. Alas, dear Borders, how the mighty have fallen! I would sing you one last ode, but I need to go snap up a book on Amazon before it sells…



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