Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Closing Borders in Montana

Not that Border. Canada is still open as of last week, for sure. It's been everywhere on the internet about Borders (Books Musics Movies Cafes) closing. My take-- I've always preferred about every other book mega-chain over Borders when comparing them. But the loss of variety (such as it is) is rarely good in the world of bibliophilia.

I stopped at Borders in Billings last week on the way home from Yellowstone Park. We actually stopped there twice, once on the way out and once on the way

back. Yes, I picked over the carcass of the once proud empire builder-- there were some good books to be found amidst the piles and deep discounts. I found a small arm load of books I wanted to read, the Mrs. also found quite a few.

I've seen a few photos from other Borders around the country and they can be pretty apalling. Books strewn on the floor like they've just filmed an episode of Supermarket Sweep. The folks in Billings have kept it neat and professional, but pretty no-nonsense.

Looking for a chair? Too bad. Need a coffee? Bring a thermos.

What really brought it home was the sign
for selling off the fixtures. For some reason it didn't seem too real. Growing up in Lincoln, Nebraska there was a furniture store notorious for "going out of business" sales for the best part of a decade-- maybe even longer.

But even the rolling ladders are up for bid now, and that surely is the sign of the end for a place like Borders. Actually, they should do a bookstore version of Supermarket Sweep. That would be pretty cool.