Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Retail Touch of Death

Just a short bit of mental vomit for you all today. A little something that a conversation with a co-worker got me thinking about.

A good portion of my resume comes from 6020 E. 82 nd Street. Now, for those who aren’t in Indianapolis, and even for most of those who ARE, that is the address to that North Side monument to consumerism, Castleton Square Mall.

I worked there for most of the late 90’s, plus some time on into the “new millennium.” Not that I can go in there now and visit any of these places, because I also have the touch of Death to retailers at Castleton Square.

Let’s go down the list, shall we? Please bear in mind, the dates are rough generalizations, as I have the memory of a goldfish.

I started at a kiosk in the center court called Big Entertainment in May of 1997. It was a kiosk centered around comic books, collectibles, and related clothing. That lasted until summer of 1998, just a hair after our first anniversary. I helped unpack the truck when it opened, and I had to help pack it back up as well.

During the holidays there, I held down a part time job at Natural Wonders which was right in front of the kiosk. Now, that’s a Lego Store.

A month or so before it went out of business, I got a part time job at both Suncoast Motion Picture Company and Waves Music, both which have gone the way of the dodo. Waves got dropped when I took a position at Electronics Boutique, and Suncoast got dropped when I got promoted at EB. Both of those stores have gone the way of Pauly Shore’s career.

I worked at Electronics Boutique at Castleton before I got transferred to the Lafayette Square Mall location, and then left entirely when I moved to Southern California. They have since been bought out by Gamestop, and no longer exist.

I spent some time in Cali, then came back to Indiana in 2002. My first job back was a part-time gig at The Disney Store, which lasted about a month before I found full-time work elsewhere. Since I worked there, they closed down the location that I was employed at, opened a smaller in-line spot further down the mall, been bought out by The Children’s Place, then been bought back by Disney.

The final place I worked at that mall was Galyan’s Sports and Outdoors, around the same time Dick’s Sporting Goods was opening further down 82 nd Street. I still remember the day we were told we were bought out, and we were no longer allowed to wear the “Home Town Home Team” t-shirts. I jumped ship from there as soon as I could, because Dick’s wasn’t just their name, it was also their attitude for those of us who had stayed on from Galyan’s.

Every place I have worked at Castleton is gone, moved, or bought out, yet I still have good memories of working there.

Perhaps tomorrow…

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