what, like i'm supposed to go to macy's now?
i keep it simple when it comes to shopping. growing up in minnesota, that once meant target for regular stuff and dayton's for the "nice" stuff. i guess you could add garage sales and junk stores for cheap stuff, but other than that i've been a loyal target/dayton's shopper.
this had many advantages. i rarely had to set foot in a mall, i didn't waste time driving around, and i could choose from among a nicely delimited set of options. this was especially true for men's clothing and accessories -- guys knew they'd never go too far astray buying their shirts, shoes, suits, belts, coats, luggage, and other stuff at dayton's. the clerks were good, so one always had reliable help matching a tie and quickly finding all manner of fine gifts for friends and family. plus, they had a sweet candy counter in the basement that made a trip with dad a bit more memorable for the kids.
like other grand old department stores, dayton's began hemorrhaging money a few years ago. they were purchased by marshall field's of chicago, and eventually dropped the dayton's name altogether. as of today, field's has been subsumed under the macy's name. my loyalty waned with the first switch and i certainly won't be patronizing macy's with any regularity.
don't proud local names like dayton's have any market value? does it really cost that much to create signage and shopping bags with a little local flavor? i can't imagine that the good people of chicago will get excited (at least not in a positive way) about shopping at macy's rather than field's.
old-school minnesotans sure didn't like the first switch and i can't imagine they'll favor this one, either. if the department store concept is dead altogether, maybe a smart entrepreneur could reprise the moniker under a new business model. let me selfishly suggest a men's store featuring good stuff that a fella can pick up on the way home from work. this would offer easy one-stop shopping for minnesota curmudgeons like me and my dad (and, soon enough, my son). perhaps retiring minnesota senator mark dayton can be lured back into the family business. i'll even toss my fedora at the opening if you think it would help.