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Toys R Us, A Thing Of The Past?

(63 posts)
  1. chasingembers

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    Looks like things aren't looking good for them. I remember going there as a child, and many times since becoming a parent. Sad news.

    Toys R Us

    Edited by jvnshr: Link fixed.

    Damnation seize my soul if I give you quarters, or take any from you.
    -Edward Teach
    Posted 1 year ago #
  2. scotties22

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    We are taking the kids tonight to do a bit of shopping. We shop there five or six times a year. It's sad to see it go.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  3. midwestpipesmoker70

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    That is sad news. We have one here and although I don't shop there much throughout the year we usually end up there around Christmas time. In fact this last November we were shopping there and quite honestly I was surprised at how much they offered. Maybe it was because it was Christmas time, I don't know but I will just say it didn't look like they were having troubles. They were packed to the gills.I figured the store would be showing it's stress from the business taken away from Amazon but at that time there were no signs. Maybe a last hurrah this last Christmas. I can remember as a kid though how magical it was going into a store filled with nothing but toys!

    Nate
    Posted 1 year ago #
  4. anthonyrosenthal74

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    Sad news indeed.

    Arrrrr, shiver me timbers! International Talk Like a Pirate Day is September the 19th!!!
    Brothers Of The Black Frigate
    Posted 1 year ago #
  5. btp79

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    The board of directors couldn't see enough joy in a world without McClellands

    Posted 1 year ago #
  6. seacaptain

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    Sad, but it was always our last choice stop for toys because the prices are usually higher than elsewhere.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  7. didimauw

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    Yeah it doesn't surprise me, as the prices WERE always very high. But we just took our 5 year old daughter there for the first time last month. That was fun!

    "I don't know half of you half as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve."
    Posted 1 year ago #
  8. jazz

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    I always wondered why the 'R' was arse-backwards.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  9. mso489

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    The Toys R Us near me closed some years ago. I shopped there for kids in the family over the years, and I could see it slowly slip away, from a sort of retail Disneyland of the latest toys in vast variety, to a less-well staffed and stocked store, to an annoying sort of flea market of toys with not much staff other than check-out, if you could locate them. As the old joke goes about Sears stores, it was a good place to go if you wanted to be alone.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  10. scotties22

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    Just wrapped up what may be our last trip! The kids had a blast. We let them roam for about an hour before everyone picked out a few small things to bring home.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  11. d4k23

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    I remember going to pick a bike out as a kid there. But with my herd now, they enjoy it but equally enjoy looking through the infinite options on the internet. Don't think we'll miss the place.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  12. jpmcwjr

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    F.A.O. Schwartz was the place I miss. We Be Toys not so much.

    I know that you believe you understood what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.
    Posted 1 year ago #
  13. shanegreen

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    Shopping there is much like shopping at IKEA. Everything is overpriced and is sure to break, but no matter what age one can't help but find some charm in the walk through.

    Toys are dead in this digital age. Toys required some imagination, pretend. Those days I think are gone, but what do I know. I'm a tired old coot.

    They're plum loco. All of them.
    Posted 1 year ago #
  14. chasingembers

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    Another sad casualty of the internet. In fifty years, probably no schools, hard copy books, movie theaters, libraries or book stores. People will say there were no "good old days", but it seems mine are vanishing before my eyes due to tech. I've never even owned a computer.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  15. jvnshr

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    I always wondered why the 'R' was arse-backwards.

    "Я" is actually a Cyrillic letter and a word in Russian which sounds as "ya" and means "I".

    Javan
    Posted 1 year ago #
  16. mikethompson

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    Interesting angle about the possibility of all that vacant commercial space. Strikes me as similar to what happened when all the Targets pulled out of Canada. There were tons of them and most are still empty. Only now have the two sites in my town been redeveloped.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  17. civilwar

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    Sad news

    Posted 1 year ago #
  18. pappymac

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    In my small piece of the world, we have lost our Sears, JC Penney, Target, K-Mart and now Toys R US. Most of them fell victim to on-line retailers or because of over-saturation of the market. Our Target closed but the Target 20 miles from us saw an increase in business for example.

    I am glad we have a good admin and responsible moderators.

    Heave to you dark colored ship under sail! Prepare to be boarded!
    Posted 1 year ago #
  19. jpmcwjr

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    Anyone know about EJ Korvette? It was in NYC last I lived there, but that was in another C.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  20. mso489

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    Chicagoans of mature age remember Goldblatt's, the lower end department story a few blocks south on State Street from the tony Marshall Fields (now a Macy's) and Carson Pierre Scott. I think Goldblatt's disappeared when K-Mart first opened in the suburbs, probably in the late fifties or early sixties. Brick and mortar retail was seriously overbuilt even before online retail came on full force. Empty store-fronts in strip malls abound. Also office space. I've seen office complexes new-built stand empty for years and years, a tax write-off for someone, I guess. When I was in college, I'd pick up a shirt or pair of chinos at Goldblatt's now and then, on a student budget.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  21. tbradsim1

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    Kids don't want toys anymore, electronics, next thing is kids bikes, parents love these babysitters, cry when they turn into crazies. Just an old mans observation.

    The Old Cajun
    Posted 1 year ago #
  22. seacaptain

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    Kids don't want toys anymore, electronics, next thing is kids bikes, parents love these babysitters, cry when they turn into crazies. Just an old mans observation.

    There's a lot of truth in that.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  23. cosmicfolklore

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    My oldest is training in Retail Mngmt, and we were talking about this the other night. Online wholesalers were killing retail, so retailers created their own websites to compete. But, the problem is that if there is a B&M store, people will make returns to the B&M over shipping returns back to the online address. This is killing the B&M's, but it is what makes them competitive with the big sites like Amazon. You want to buy shoes, but are weary of the sizes, because different brands, different sizes fit different people. So, you choose (lets say) JC Penny, because you know that if you can just drive over and make a return, it's easier than packing a box and waiting in line at the Post Office (in their perceptions). Besides, going to a store is always better than going to a cold sterile PO.

    But, by accepting online returns easily, this increases the return rate. People choose you for this, correct? So, the B&M's take the brunt of returns. JC Penny reported exponentially more returns in the last few years. They then take a loss at the store on two ends, buying back returns which is buying a back a product they can no longer sell. Then the clothes are bought by other companies after 14 months at pennies on the dollar. Loss/loss.

    We will see more and more retail closing up soon. It's just the way of things. The expense of paying commercial utilities is ten-fold that of residential, and the expense of the space is increasing dramatically as well. It's weird though. Nothing is driving up the cost of commercial space, since nothing is going back into their places. We end up with empty malls across the country, caused exclusively by greedy land owners. Their greed leads them to selling these malls at bargain basement prices back to communities to make new "things" out of them, cheaper things.

    That's the brunt of what I gather the problem is anyways. There's always more things contributing to an issue though.

    Michael
    Posted 1 year ago #
  24. tbradsim1

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    Just read an article that stores, nameing just one Best Buy are useing third party people to police returns and that they lump good customers without cause, one man bought over 4K of products and got canned for trying to return IPhone cases, had bought a handful so his people could choose, then tried to return the ones that weren't chosen. Third party people are not wanting to answer questions, something sinester in that and some loyal customers are chucking their patronage at that store. Wife says Walmart has the best return policy, she should know she's a shopaholic.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  25. mso489

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    We like an artisan bakery in town opened by young people who work like crazy producing "real" bread and a variety of other baked goods. They opened in a reclaimed storefront, and the whole area is being rebuilt. Several specialty shops are opening, and there are some upscale residential buildings going in. This area looks like it will prosper while some other boom-time strip malls will wither. I think the fad-word nimble applies, adapting quickly and accurately to customer trends. It would drive me crazy, but when it works, it is profitable. One major mall has been hobbling along for decades now as a discount mall. Some stores are really like flea markets. The merchandise may be new, but it has been rescued from warehouses somewhere.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  26. cosmicfolklore

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    MSO, those discount stores are buying the merchandise from the big box retailers under contract for pennies on the dollar after 14 months on the shelves. And, as the big boxes close up, the discount stores won't have anything to stock their stores. Also, after a certain amount of time in a discount store, it then is bought by others in gross to sell at actual flea markets and trade days. Trickle down?

    In the back of many of these big boxes, they have literally "bailed" the clothes like cotton and put them on flats.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  27. mso489

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    Cosmic, interesting. I'm near a Marshall's, and stop by when I'm over that way; some days nothing, others, just what I'm looking for. Likewise, I've noticed some of my best fitting, most durable cotton short sleeved shirts (with a breast pocket for sunglasses and pen) I've bought at Walmart at the end of the season, for almost nothing. I admit, I sometimes splurge on a catalog item (though often on seasonal discount) but the Walmart items wear like iron, long after some namey brands don't. If you buy traditional designs, they last for eons.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  28. cosmicfolklore

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    I miss the old American Liberty brand that they used to carry. I only really buy my workout clothes and coveralls from WalMart. But, my wife is an expert shopper. She has the game down. She uses double discount days and opens a new credit account with each visit. She can get me $1000 in name brands for $100 sometimes (60% and then 60% and then 20% for opening a new line of credit). And, the way she does the credits, we have AWESOME credit scores. However, I always wonder how these stores make any money.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  29. joeman

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    Anyone know about EJ Korvette?

    I used to shop Korvette years ago in MI. You had a color code on each vinyl lp, and had to look up on the wall to see what the current price was. That shop is loooong gone.

    One of my favorite childhood memories was my brother taking me to Toys R Us when I was about 10 (1973) on my birthday...and told me I could pick out a toy. I'm still thankful to him for that, I felt like one special little brother.

    We took our kids to Toys R Us as they were growing up in the 1990's...and I don't know that I've been back since. When we buy a toy for someone's kid...it's just too easy to find it cheaper on Amazon...and have it on our doorstep 2 days later with free shipping.

    JoeMan
    Posted 1 year ago #
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    http://business.financialpost.com/news/retail-marketing/toys-r-us-canada-carries-on-business-as-usual-amid-reports-of-u-s-liquidation

    Ironically some of these classic American retailers are now becoming status symbols of the Canadian economy.
    I'm guessing that's still mostly a matter of having 1/10th the population with nearly twice as much land though.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  31. herrpfeifen

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    Maybe the writing was already on the wall for Toys R Us but Bain Capital buying them and loading them up with debt sure didn't help.

    Interestingly, this is the same playbook Bain used on KB Toys which also went bankrupt and shut down soon after.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  32. pappymac

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    Then you have stores like Steinmart, T.J. Maxx, Marshall's and Burkes that all seemed to be be owned by the same conglomeration. They all sell items cheaper than you can find at stores like Dillards and Macy with each one being a little lower on the food chain than the others. You go walk around them and even the layouts are similar.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  33. 9mmpuffer

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    I was there today. Something I bought last week at Walmart was 25% higher at Toys R Us, both were regular price.

    Posted 1 year ago #
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    Kinda funny on a site that only talks about which online store is cheapest while talking about going to the local bm to buy pipe cleaners to "keep it local" and are so sad when they go under. Get used to it folks click and ship is the way of the future. No fault of your own.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  35. jvnshr

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    Kids don't want toys anymore, electronics, next thing is kids bikes, parents love these babysitters, cry when they turn into crazies. Just an old mans observation.

    Kids are just the mirrors of their parents. It is not the kids but the parents who want their kids to want electronics. Kids want everything actually, give them a brick and it will become a car wheel in a second in their hands.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  36. mikethompson

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    It is not the kids but the parents who want their kids to want electronics

    I can confirm this 100%.

    The article doesn't mention anything about Babies R Us. I don't know if that's a Canada-only thing or not. I'm assuming that if the toy shop closes, the baby stuff store will close as well.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  37. cosmicfolklore

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    give them a brick and it will become a car wheel in a second in their hands.

    Javan, this came to mind...

    Posted 1 year ago #
  38. chasingembers

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    The article doesn't mention anything about Babies R Us.

    The one I always go to have both stores in one building as separate departments. I would imagine it would apply to them as well.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  39. jvnshr

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    Javan, this came to mind...

    I was talking about the steering wheels Michael, sorry for the misunderstanding.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  40. mso489

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    Bath, kitchen, and auto parts chains seem to be over-extended to me. Among others. There seems to be some consolidation in office supplies as well. Maybe nail salons and massage therapy businesses in some suburban areas. Coffee shops for sure. Some of the chain restaurants, where young part time employees cook out of loose leaf instruction notebooks, also seem to be closing some sites. Many of these seem to have had more investment capital than know-how. Real professional chefs, cooks, and bartenders are rare and underpaid, so there are many under-trained who simply don't know their business. When you encounter a real professional wait person in a restaurant, you don't know what's happening. I remember the middle aged and older waiters at Berghoff's, a German restaurant in Chicago, who were consummate pros, nothing like 'em this side of Paris and maybe Berlin. If you watched their faces closely, you could tell whether you were ordering the best entrees or not, and change your order accordingly.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  41. cosmicfolklore

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    Very, very, very few restaurants do anything besides just opening a huge can and warm it up these days. Even the ones known for having something special on their menu that is obviously handmade, usually fills the rest of their menu up with canned crap. Usually, you can tell if you are about to get canned crap or handmade by the price of the meal.

    Our local auto parts stores are always busy. I don't usually order car parts online, because when I need a new hose, belt, or steering gear, I need it immediately. And, if that store doesn't have the part I need, they will call around till they find someone local that does. Actually, auto parts would be a smart business to open. People will always need quality parts and convenience.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  42. mso489

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    Cosmic, the cars on blocks photo is an ad for cheap wheels and wheel covers. My previous car had locks on its up-market wheels, and luckily, I kept them 'til I traded it in.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  43. warren

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    If I hear a micro-wave "ding" in a "fine" restaurant, it's not.

    A man without a shillelagh is a man without an expedient.
    Posted 1 year ago #
  44. cosmicfolklore

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    If I hear a micro-wave "ding" in a "fine" restaurant, it's not.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  45. joeman

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    Kinda funny on a site that only talks about which online store is cheapest while talking about going to the local bm to buy pipe cleaners to "keep it local" and are so sad when they go under.

    True. But my local pipe shop, as well as my local smallish hardware store are different. I want to support them because of their very personal customer service. Toys / gifts and whatnot...I can get online. I'd like to keep my B/M pipe shop and hardware...as long as I can.

    If I hear a micro-wave "ding" in a "fine" restaurant, it's not.

    Yeah, about that. My wife and I were eating at an establishment I'll not name here...paying $50 a plate...and the fancy breaded seafood thingy she was about to dig into was not so easy to get into with her fork. You see...underneath the breading...was a a cellophane wrapper. Yep...the seafood patty was obviously pre-formed, frozen and wrapped...before it was cooked fresh and sold for $50. How they got a layer of what appeared to be deep fried breading to stick to that plastic must've been a magic trick. We of course had some communication with the staff. Our thoughts about that fine restaurant changed just a bit.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  46. mawnansmiff

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    3,000+ jobs lost just in the UK as they all close their doors....

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-43401674

    ......I just hope the bosses pay the £15m tax bill before they flit off back to America with their gold plated severance packages

    Regards,

    Jay.

    ...take up thy stethoscope and walk...
    Posted 1 year ago #
  47. mso489

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    Back to the Toys R Us subject, some of the best toys we had as kids were empty appliance boxes. We'd cut windows and have space ships and mountain cabins, and get several to create several rooms, and after we'd worn them down, we'd crawl along in them like tank treads. The essence of these toys was in our minds and they could take us anywhere. Or a basement workshop (the neighbors') full of wood scraps would send us into high gear. I built a whole fleet of navy ships using various hardware fittings as gun batteries and radar antenna. Handing kids readymade toys and electronic games with the whole thing worked out by computer scientists is not necessarily a favor. A refrigerator box is a blank sheet of paper full of endless potential.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  48. tbradsim1

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    Agreed, I worked with a man who worked a lot of overtime to buy a lot of nice toys for his kids at Christmas. Christmas morning his kids unwrapped and started playing with toys, 25 minutes later they were playing in the boxes they came in. This enraged him so much he gathered the toys while the children were crying and drove to the poorer section of town and gave them away.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  49. mso489

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    Brad, that's a short story in a paragraph. It illustrates the point!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  50. shanegreen

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    You don't have to watch those set up reality shows to know that restaurants use microwaves. I grew up in an area full of Italians, and before the pc police attack me I'm Sicilian, and had a temperamental brother that worked in every Italian restaurant in the area. He claimed most everything in a couple places came pre-made right out of the freezer and into the microwave. They charged 12 to 20 a dish. I had some family members that took me to one of the places, and I was extremely skeptical of getting my food in less than ten minutes after ordering.

    Before bookstores died I loved going to them. All throughout the 90s I spent a lot of time at Borders. I liked buying cd's and books in a place where I could hang out and take my time while I got coffee and a muffin. I dated girls that worked at Borders, and girls that did their college homework at the cafe part. When I quit the booze it was a great place to meet someone. I even met a girl there once who got stood up on a blind date. After an hour with her I understood why. My dad and I would often meet for coffee also at the bookstore when he was on a lunch break. We were both sad when it closed, but we also bought books from Amazon for half the price.

    Before internet dating took of in 2000 something, there was the newspaper want ads for "desperate people," bars, or doing like I did and told half the girls I thought that I would be thinking about when I left the bookstore, grocery store, or wherever else that I had to introduce myself or I would regret it and either get a date, or deal with the responses. When internet dating became free on some sites it was flooded, and the shame was gone. Shy dudes could approach women, some going a bit far in telling them the weird stuff they woud like to do to the girl opening line. I met my wife on a dating site that I might not have met otherwise.

    As things have been made easier, a lot has been gained, but with every gain there is a loss. My cigar shop like most does not carry estate pipes like ebay does, but those guys that formerly owned those pipes got them still and enjoyed them. In the 90s when cell phones were used I was aggravated with everyone walking around having a conversation. Now the play pokemon and walk out in front of cars. Where is it all going in ten years from now?

    My sister spoils her kids rotten. They would get every toy imaginable, and there was no buying them anything. All of those toys would hardly get played with, as they are on their phones and video games. I used to keep myself busy for hours in the dirt with a Tonka truck, now parents are letting their ten year olds play Grand Theft Auto because the other kids parents let them play it.

    There is a plus to technology, otherwise we would have not all gone for it like blind banshees. Now we don't care what company or who tracks what on ur devices as long as we get what we want when we want it. Fishing is still fishing. Video game fishing has not replaced it yet. There is a lot that just can't be replaced, but here we are on forums arguing half the time over stuff we wouldn't start an argument over if we talked in person.

    There was a day when microwaves were the best thing to happen to a household, and then they appeared in restaurants..

    Posted 1 year ago #
  51. seacaptain

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    Ooops, the post got sent through twice. No error of mine, but technology. I edited a couple of unclear sentences in the second one, not noticing the one above, so read the second seemingly duplicate post.

    I nominate this for the pipe forum post of the year.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  52. shanegreen

    shanegreen

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    I second that motion!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  53. chasingembers

    Embers

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    There is a plus to technology, otherwise we would have not all gone for it like blind banshees.

    Had it not been for being a parent, I wouldn't even own a cell phone. My online presence is here, SPC, ebay, and Amazon.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  54. jvnshr

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    Agreed, I worked with a man who worked a lot of overtime to buy a lot of nice toys for his kids at Christmas. Christmas morning his kids unwrapped and started playing with toys, 25 minutes later they were playing in the boxes they came in. This enraged him so much he gathered the toys while the children were crying and drove to the poorer section of town and gave them away.

    I bought this VW Beetle for my son when he turned 2 years old so he can sit and drive it (it has a remote control for parents as well) and I paid a lot for it. My son on the other hand gave this to me yesterday

    while holding another one on his hands like a steering wheel and asked me to pretend like we were driving cars.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  55. jvnshr

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    Very, very, very few restaurants do anything besides just opening a huge can and warm it up these days.

    Do that here in Azerbaijan and you will have no customers.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  56. cosmicfolklore

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    I used to go to Chinese Restaurants here quite a bit, and we have quite a few of them. They usually start off looking like they are actually cooking the food, and a few months into it, you will see them dumping can directly into the big pots, or even refilling stuff on the buffet directly from the bag. I was eating at one with a friend who knew the owner of one, and she came over to talk with us while we ate. We were all on the Business Leaders Ass... I was appalled that everything was frozen or canned, and she pointed out that with rent being like $2800 a month, commercial utilities another $2000, one cook, two servers, and plates for under $20, when you do the math, it would be foolish to expect that we are getting fresh prepared food.

    I just avoid Chinese Restaurants all together now. But, we do have a really nice Mexican Grill that serves grilled chicken that is awesome, and they make the guacamole at the table for you. Plus, I can smoke my pipe when we can get a seat on the patio or the balcony. It is very pricey, but it's worth it to know that you aren't getting something that was nuked or warmed. I just avoid anything there burrito, wrapped, or using ground beef.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  57. mawnansmiff

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    I don't know how it is in America but here in the UK a customer has a legal right to look at the kitchen of any restaurant he is thinking of patronising. If he/she don't like what they see they just walk out.

    Regards,

    Jay.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  58. shanegreen

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    There have been a couple kitchens that I have seen that made me walk out. I worked in a Salvadorian kitchen for a few months and everything was made from scratch. The cheese was brought out a little bit at a time so it didn't sit out for too long, even though it was a pain to move everything out of the way to get to it every ten minutes. It was a small kitchen, but had standards.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  59. mso489

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    The NY Times caught up with this story on their business pages today. Remember, you got the link first on pipesmagazine's Forums.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  60. mawnansmiff

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    I never knew frogs ate cheese

    Regards,

    Jay.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  61. cosmicfolklore

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    What, French people eat cheese all the time, umm, I mean...

    Posted 1 year ago #
  62. shanegreen

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    Haha Jay you learn something new every day! We especially like pizza!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=irM76-QQHkM

    We also eat other frogs. I was fishing a weedy pond in SC in a refuge that was full of alligators. It was also full of lily pads.I bounced that frog allover that pond. I caught 3 bass and a frog. I had a snake on for a while, and a small gator stalked that frog also.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  63. jvnshr

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    Posted 1 year ago #

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