Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thursday Ponderings

Well, it's Thursday, Thanksgiving holiday, and a day off work. And now the madness known as the Christmas season kicks into gear, as lights start going up on houses and stores. Sadly, the Christmas message of "Peace on Earth" is nothing but an empty phrase, as it has been almost every year in history. With the terrorist attacks yesterday in Mumbai, India, we once again see that there are severely defective human beings capable of horrific acts of death and violence against others who have done them no wrong. The American occupation of Iraq continues, and the Taliban is resurgent in Afghanistan. An attack on government officials in the South Ossetia region of the Republic of Georgia following the Russian invasion, along with Russia cozying up to Hugo Chavez in Venezuela threaten to further degrade world order. We even have pirates seizing merchant vessels off the coast of Somalia. So while "Peace on Earth" remains a wonderful ideal, there are people in the world who will not allow it to be.

Poor little Molly dog is probably going to need surgery on her foot, but as we try to see if she will heal without it, she is proving difficult to gain cooperation from. She ate the bandage they put on her at the emergency room, and when we put the Elizabethan dog collar on her, she broke the snaps and tore off the new bandage that the lovely spouse had made. I fear that we will be hard pressed to keep her from messing up any surgery, making healing even more difficult. It is a sad sight to see her limping around with a bandaged up foot.

Having owned a retail pack & ship business for 3 years, I am very glad to not be in that business this holiday season. With the suppliers (FedEx and UPS) competing with us by encouraging on-line shipping; plus buying Kinkos and Mail Boxes, Etc. respectively; business just kept declining. On top of that, our franchiser was all help and smiles before they get your money. After that, they were worthless. They live on turnover and selling new franchises rather than helping their existing ones succeed.

Now with this horrible economic situation, I fully expect to see more and more retail businesses shutting down right after Christmas & New Year's Day. After what the LS and I went through, I have great empathy for the Mom & Pop stores out there struggling to stay in business in an environment where even big box outfits like Linens & Things and Circuit City can't make it. Already, the new Circuit City store that opened six months ago here in Parker is going out of business. Several other businesses have gone down, even as new ones continue to pop up. This is not a good time to be a retailer. I can honestly say that nearly four years since we shut down our stores, I am so glad to not have that burden anymore. We paid dearly for the lesson.

No comments: