Economy taking its toll: B&N closes in Chelsea

How sad, to put it simply, that something as magical as a bookstore has to close in order for Americans to finally feel the economy’s draft.

According to “City Room,” a New York Times blog, the Barnes and Noble on the Avenue of the Americas, between 21st and 22nd Streets, closed its doors for the last time on Monday, March 31.

This was due to rent costs that became unaffordable, said Mitchell S. Klipper, chief operating officer of B&N.

Customers came and looked longingly through the papered windows. That particular location had been open 14 years.

This is very depressing, and I think it’s a much more imperative indication than most people think.

I adore working at a bookstore. To think that more locations might close because of the rising costs of operation . . . It’s gloomy and ominous.

I don’t understand how the economy is attempting to adjust: Costs of everything are rising as incomes and revenues decrease. Why doesn’t someone harness the excessive amount of power business heads are exercising, pull together for the U.S. and adjust the cost of living to what the majority of Americans can afford?

(When will I be able to run the country?)

This economy is like a giant black cloud. It’s about to drop buckets, thunder and lightning. Then it will clear and we will see rainbows at some point in the future.

But until then, the cuts keep coming. Even local stores have been forced to cut back hours, both employee- and store-wise.

Store No. 2191 in Howell is now open Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

We used to be open until 11 p.m. Monday through Saturday and kept Sunday hours of 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Those days are gone. While it isn’t heart-wrenching to see them go, I am sad that thousands of books will not be read in the near future.

PHOTO: STACKED What I imagine might happen to all those wonderful books previously stocked at the B&N in Chelsea. RIP, mound of print. The one thing we need most in this world, and you’re leaving us title by title. (Melissa L. Gaffney)

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Filed under Barnes and Noble, Blog, The New York Times

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