Monday, January 22, 2007

Silver Spring News 'N Notes

- You can gentrify all you want, but you can’t eliminate some old school Silver Spring attitudes. I saw a guy at the corner of Pershing & Cedar wheeling home his groceries in one of the Thayer Avenue Safeway’s shopping carts. Why buy your own cart when it’s much easier to simply steal one every trip to the store? So what if the carts cost $75 to $100 each for the store to replace. That cost can be covered by increased prices for other shoppers.

What amazes me is that this guy apparently feels no shame and/or worry about being questioned by the police while blatantly wheeling a stolen cart through the heart of downtown Silver Spring.

The worst shopping cart theft in the area that I've seen has to be at the Giant in the White Oak Shopping Center. At any time, you can go back into the apartment complex behind the Sears and find dozens of abandoned carts lying around.

UPDATE: If you see stray shopping carts, you are legally obligated to return them to the Safeway, it being the U.S. Census' Return Shopping Carts to the Supermarket Month.

- The ia etc shop in the Whole Foods shopping center has signs up indicating it's going out of business moving. Admittedly, I never shopped there myself, but the experience (as described by the store's website) sure sounds pleasant:

Shopping at ia etc, in downtown Silver Spring is a Zen experience. Upon arrival, jazzy music and the earthy aroma of sandalwood and patchouli ["Get your patchouli stink outta my store!"] transport you to a different dimension. With a lightness in your step, and curiosity in your spirit, you can explore carefully set displays featuring rich and exotic home accessories.

- Over the long MLK weekend, I finally got around to reading George P. Pelecanos' Right as Rain and Hell to Pay, parts of which take place in downtown Silver Spring. The only error I noticed is that a character references going to the TGIFriday's in City Place, when the "casual dining restaurant" in City Place is, of course, Ruby Tuesday. Of course, this mistake could be attributed to the character, rather than the author. Note that Silver Spring will be getting its first TGIFriday's, as one will be opening shortly in the new shopping plaza at 29 & Tech Rd. Yipee.

- A Springbrook High student returns a book to the school library... 42 years late.

- Want to serve on the Silver Spring Citizens Advisory Board? Ike Leggett is now accepting applications:
Interested citizens should apply in writing by February 955
to County Executive Isiah Leggett at the Executive Office Building, 101 Monroe St., Rockville, MD 20850 or send an e-mail to A brief resume, including work and home phone numbers, should be enclosed.


Anonymous said...

On more than one occasion I have found a Safeway grocery cart in front of my house on the 800 block of Thayer Avenue. Obviously Safeway's security system is not working properly whereas a lock on one of the cart's wheel is supposed to engage whenever the cart is pushed beyond the perimeter of the store's property. I've even called Safeway to tell them to send someone to pick up their carts when I see them (mind you, a block away) and they never do it so I do. In my opinion, all of Safeway's carts should be stolen and then maybe they would go out of business. A good neighbor Safeway is not.

Anonymous said...

I believe that ia etc is moving, according to an email I received from them, not going out of business. I didn't get any more information, though, so don't know their destination.

ihateyuppies said...

The fact that ia etc is moving is NOT a good sign for retail business in the new downtown Silver Spring.

My theory: not enough yuppie customers to keep business happening in Silver Spring.

I bet they are moving to Bethesda or Rockville.

Anonymous said...

ia etc business sucks not because there aren't enough yuppies, but because it is the worst location in all of the Foulger-Pratt development. They have virtually no visibily from any street and they're only barely visible from the Whole Foods/Strosneiders parking lot.

It is also off the beaten path for pedestrians, who much more often use the street between Whole Foods & the Dry Cleaners to get to Fenton.

A store like that (without any brand recognition) needs a lot of eyeballs looking into its windows.

Debbie Cook said...

IA etc. is going out of business or moving because their stuff is outrageously expensive! and the salespeople are snooty as all get out. I went in one day and asked the price of a chandalier. I think the woman thought I was a street person or something, she totally ignored me and looked down her nose at me. I felt really uncomfortable and like I was underdressed in my jeans. No wonder that place is always empty!I notice they have the upstairs as their decorating center. They will need to move to Bethesda or Potomac to do any business. Hey, maybe I can buy that chandalier for 70% off at their moving or going out of business sale!!

Anonymous said...

I agree they are snooty. That with a rotten location spells disaster.