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Make a Run for the Border(s)

Though I’ll take advantage of clearance and going-out-of-business sales…I take no pleasure in seeing a store go out of business. I was shocked last month when I got the email announcement THAT the entire [Borders] chain was closing. And I’ve stoutly refused to go to one after my experience with one that went out last December.

At that time, they were not accepting coupons, the selection was highly picked-over, and the remaining books not in good condition overall. The one I wound up buying–Blackest Night: Green Lantern–wound up costing me a bit more with the “going out of business clearance” than if I’d simply been able to use my coupon. But, driving the distance I had, I wasn’t walking out empty-handed. (Yeah, yeah…cutting off a nose to spite the face, and all that).

Plus, I’ve had a lot of good memories associated with Borders, and wasn’t thrilled at the prospect of seeing the place look gutted and picked-over, as that one in December did.

Thursday, though, I wound up deciding to pay what will likely be my last-ever visit to the closest Borders to me–the one that was one of the first places I sought out back in 2004 when I first moved to Kent for grad school. For nearly three-quarters of a decade, it’s been my “home” bookstore, the store I’d go to when I wanted to at least look at books, browse books, see what I’d discover. And–while this is likely part of the business model that may’ve brought ’em down–it’s the store I’d most often visit with the weekly emailed coupons when they were offering 30-45 or occasionally 50 percent off one item.

Looking around my room it’s pretty easy to spot many of the books I’ve bought over the years, just from this one specific store.

Buffy: the Vampire Slayer – Tales; Hulk: Planet Hulk; X-Men: Second Coming; at least two volumes of X-Men: The Complete Age of Apocalypse Epic; Deadpool & Cable vol. 1, several Green Lantern hardcovers, at least one of the Green Lantern Corps paperbacks; the Bone: One-Volume Edition; several volumes of The Walking Dead; IDW‘s GI Joe vol. 1 and GI Joe: Origins vol. 1; one or two of the Left Behind books; several of Dark Horse‘s Aliens novels; Stephen King‘s Cell; a couple of Brad Meltzer‘s books; a couple of John Grisham‘s books; Neil Gaiman‘s Anansi Boys; and surely others I’m forgetting…to say nothing of the books I’ve bought at other Borders locations.

Thinking offhand of which specific Borders locations I’ve been to, there’s: the original one in Ann Arbor, MI; the one that was in Mentor, OH just a block down the road from a Half-Price Books; a Borders Express at a mall where two of my best friends and I saw the 2009 Star Trek film in Ann Arbor suburbia; a Borders Express in Stow, OH; as well as the Borders that was at The Strip in North Canton, OH.

Going even further back, I recall Borders Outlet (which I think may have morphed into Borders Express; there was a Borders Outlet in Willoughby, OH that I used to frequent). My lone DC Archives edition–Superman vol. 5–is a valuable gem I snagged once when it was on sale for $4.99 or so (it’s a $50 cover price).

Anyway, back to Thursday night at Borders: I wound up–at 40% off–buying Brightest Day vol. 2, as well as four MMPB Aliens volumes. I figured worst case, one of those Aliens volumes would be a duplicate.

Turns out that THREE of the for were duplicates. And due to the nature of this sale–can’t take ’em back. So in the end, rather than saving 40% off a sweet purchase…I effectively paid full price for the “new” books, with 3 dupes tossed in “free.” And with that sorta blow to the wallet, I’m going to have to temporarily suspend my Ultraverse quest til my next paycheck.

Silver lining is…I wound up getting this lengthy blog post out of it, with some reminiscing about Borders I’d considered writing up weeks ago.

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