Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Fox & Sons Books—Revenge at Last

Hollywood, movies, film, blockbuster
Fictional Bookstore From You've Got Mail

We just returned from New York City. My son’s family lives on the Upper West side with his wife and three of my grandchildren. Our daughter, her husband, and our other three grandchildren joined us to make this a family get-together and special Thanksgiving celebration. We did it all … or at least some of us did it all. Others, like myself, sometimes hung back watching televised football.
I did join everyone on a jaunt to Times Square on Monday, but declined to return on Black Friday. 

times square
Toys R Us Times Square
On Monday, the weather was perfect, which meant that Toy R Us and other stores were sweltering without air conditioning. It didn't help that the shops were packed tighter than a sardine can. Jack Frost made a visit on Black Friday, so stale air and heat were less of an issue. The crush of the crowds, however, overwhelmed all other sensations. There are over eight million people in New York City. Half went to Macy’s and the other half traipsed down to Times Square … and they brought all of their relatives visiting for the holiday. All this is hearsay, of course. I stayed at my son’s apartment to watch Nebraska barely beat Iowa.

Ice Skating in Central Park

I also declined an ice skating excursion in Central Park. These days I’m not about to get on the ice, and stomping my feet on the sidelines to keep warm didn’t sound like much fun. My son texted live video of my grandkids skating, which gave me a rare appreciation for modern gadgetry.

I did do many other things, however. I watched my grandson score several touchdowns in the Yorksvilles Turkey Bowl on Randall’s Island, attended Mass at my granddaughter’s school, enjoyed my granddaughter’s performance in the Nutcracker Suite, celebrated my twin grandsons’ birthday, viewed balloons staged for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade, watched the parade from a precarious perch on a Central Park wall, consumed a traditional Thanksgiving dinner surrounded by family, and even found time to write.

independent bookstores
bookculture Bookstore in NYC
movies, film, hollywood
Shop Around the Corner from You've Got Mail
One of my favorite experiences was a new bookstore on Columbus and 82nd. The opening, rather than a closing, of an independent bookstore warranted a piece in the New York Times. The newness lured me in, but after my initial visit, I’m sure bookculture will be one of my regular haunts when I visit the city.

Borders is gone and Barnes & Noble closed several of their NYC stores. The Shop Around The Corner in the movie You’ve Got Mail was located close to the bookculture location. Perhaps the Fox & Sons Books model is growing thin. It’s ironic to see the behemoth boxes run out of business by Amazon, only to make room once again for intimate bookstores with a bookish atmosphere. In the end, I bet knowledgeable and friendly staff who understand local tastes will elbow themselves enough room to prosper.I hope so. 

When I visited bookculture, it was packed with people, many of them buying armloads of books. Granted, it was Black Friday, but sale pricing seemed limited. It was hard to tell if shoppers were buying for themselves or for Christmas. Whichever, I hope the store remains busy … and I hope books become the favorite gift for the coming holidays.

Suggested Gifts for Friends and Loved Ones



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