I know that I will be fully ostracized for even admitting that I crossed the threshold into a Walmart, but you'll be happy to know that karma took care of my lapse in judgement by serving me up a nasty dose of the reality of being in this corporate behemoth. There were certain personages on my holiday gift list who wanted a gift certificate to said monolith. And while I could refuse to do so and try to figure out another gift, frankly, I don't have the energy to do so. So off I went.....to the newest (and closest, at 20 miles away) Walmart in the area. As usual, I had drinken too much coffee, and I needed to use the powder room. This is where the story cannot continue....my stomach is too weak and you'll appreciate my restraint. However, I must say that there is something terribly wrong when the bathroom at the Walmart is more disgusting than the bathroom at the Sather Gate Garage, which is 1/2 block from Telegraph Ave. - THE Telegraph Ave., of the homeless, the hippie, the downtrodden, the eclectic, far-left, and, scariest of all, (audible shriek) CAL students! I had driven directly to this parking garage from the evil empire, and yet again, nature called. (And yeah, I know, I should see someone about that). As I entered the bathroom, a custodial worker gently reached his hand to the door to hold it open a moment to ask....."is it clean enough?" I thought I misheard....."excuse me?" said I. "The bathroom...is it clean enough?" Uh, well, let me look around....."yes, it seems to be." "Okay." - and off he went. Huh?
Enough latrine fodder. Have you people heard of Mr. Mopps toy store in Berkeley, and if so, why haven't you told me about it before? Imagine that perfect grocery store that blends the best of Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, and the occasional run to Lucky's. (That's sort of Berkeley Bowl, but in my dream world I can go there without having to fight with a bunch of grumpy customers who run into me with their shopping carts). Mr. Mopps is the perfect toy store - sort of a Back to Basics combined with Hearthsong combined with Imaginarium before being sucked up by Toys R Us, thrown in with a smidge of Target selections. And the prices are extremely reasonable as well. You can find stocking stuffers as well as main gifts all right here. Oops.....I didn't check out if they have any electronic selections - but y'all know how I feel about that anyway.
And finally, if you're so inclined, there's a new entry to check out at Ry and Si.