Shopping yesterday and today #socs

Of course, earlier this week I published a story about going to the grocery store for Mary, so why wouldn’t store be the prompt for today?


But seriously…

The world is a much different place than it was before the Internet. In those days, if you wanted something, whether it was clothes, appliances, musical instruments, furniture, or just about anything else, you had two choices: order it, either by mail or phone, from one of the big catalog houses (Sears, Montgomery Ward’s, J. C. Penney, Spiegel, or later Service Merchandise and McDade’s) or you got in the car or on the bus, and rode to the store to shop in person, usually at a big department store. If you lived in Chicago, that typically meant Marshall Field & Company or Carson Pirie Scott & Company, but there were other places to shop as well: Wieboldt’s, Lytton’s, Best and Company, Bonwit Teller, Sak’s Fifth Avenue, Goldblatt’s, and a host of other small department stores that had sprung up in the neighborhood, such as Winsberg’s in my old neighborhood. And there were the specialty stores, places where they stocked just one type of goods, such as shoes, and maybe even just women’s shoes or kids’ shoes, or clothing, especially kids’ clothing. Nothing like today. I mean, now you have the big box stores like the hated Walmart and Target, the shopping clubs like Sam’s Club and Costco, office supply stores like Staples and Office Depot Max (which came about when Office Depot and Office Max merged), and of course electronic stores like Best Buy. You can get just about anything you want or need in one place. Convenient? You bet. Would I trade the convenience of Walmart or Target, which sell practically everything you need, for the days of having to go to one store for dress clothes, another for casual clothes, and a third for shoes? Most definitely not.

Around this time of the year, you hear impassioned pleas for people to “buy locally,” and no doubt there are people who are willing to run from store to store and buy a little here and a little there. For the most part, though, people would rather shop where they think they’ll be able to get everything they want all in one trip. Can you blame them?

I’m handicapped, so an online store like is a Godsend. Now that Mary does the shopping, whatever we can do to make things easier for her is much appreciated. We can get cat food from Amazon, and it gets delivered right to the door. Rather than having to wheel the cases around the grocery store, load them into the van, unload them from the van, and lug them up to the house, we get the big box from Amazon, slide it into the house, and just take the food out as we need it. Likewise, rather than have to go to Omar the Tentmaker and go through the rigamarole of trying on clothes where I’ll have trouble undressing and dressing, I order the clothes online, they come to the house, and ninety-nine times out of a hundred they fit. If they don’t, it’s easy enough to send the stuff back for an exchange or refund. We get all our clothes online. It just makes more sense. We save the fuel we’d need to drive around for the items we buy all the time, we save wear and tear on the van and ourselves, we don’t have to fight the crowds, and Mary doesn’t have to worry about me falling flat on my face and ending up in the hospital.

Do I miss the old days and the old way of doing things? Yes. Would I want to return to them? No.


Another weekly entry for Linda Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday. Want to play around or to find out what other people are doing? Go here.


Author: John Holton

I'm a writer and blogger who writes and blogs about things that interest me.

10 thoughts on “Shopping yesterday and today #socs”

  1. Good post and all true I also get everything online apart from things I can get 5 minute walk locally, but I would say most things now online groceries I get once a month online all the heavy stuff.

    I was only discussing all this with others the other day how much of a godsend like you said the internet is nowadays, and what a major panic it is if it goes down heheh!

    Have a tanfastic weekend 🙂


  2. Kids got us started on Amazon Prime. Great for seniors citizens like us. I spend a lot of time just thinking of things I can buy! Returning things is a breeze. Like you, I miss the old days, but wouldn’t want to return to the old ways of shopping.

    Merry Christmas to you and Mary, John.


    1. Merry Christmas to you and Loretta and all my cousins and cousins-in-law!

      Shopping online is fantastic, not just for the convenience. A lot of times you can’t find something in the stores and have to call all over looking for something, but you can find it online almost all the time, and get the best deal as well.


  3. I shop a lot from Amazon and assumed I would do most of my Christmas shopping there this year. But I really didn’t. In fact, I don’t think I bought any Christmas gifts from Amazon, although I know my husband bought mine from there. I did shop from some online stores, but I also bought a lot of things here in town. Hubby and I went shopping together one evening and ended up buying everything that day from Belk. They had a HUGE sale, then we got 20% off the sale prices. From what I saw this year, it looks like a lot of stores were trying to entice people to buy there instead of online. The deals were great this year. And, no, I do NOT shop on Black Friday! Ugh, the crowds….


    1. Occasionally you can save a lot of money shopping at the malls. We don’t go as a rule, because of my handicap, but sometimes Mary will go to Kohl’s. We try to avoid that as much as we can.


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