5 Things NOT to Miss About Going to Borders

Categories: Books

borders-logo1.jpg
In general, Art Attack is pretty bummed about the closing of Borders. Their selection was always superb, their staff was very friendly, and we liked their rewards program miles better than that of Barnes and Noble. Visiting the bookstore was one of our regular weekend routines, and it is really sad to see them go.

This was made even worse after a visit to the Galleria location this weekend. We picked up a few comic trades at a discount, something we usually put off buying because it's hard to justify spending $20 on something we can read in an hour. Checking out, we expressed our sympathies to the employees, and offered our condolences on finding a job in the current environment.

"But you're probably tired of hearing that by now," we said.

Actually, no. The clerks told us that a pretty significant amount of customers had come in to gloat about the liquidation prices, scold the clerks for bad business practices, harp about how Borders got just what was coming to it, and finally, openly mock the soon to be un-employees.

You'd think people who read a lot would behave better. Then again, Glenn Beck and Bristol Palin sell a lot of books...

Still, even though we spent our time full-on Team Borders, there are a few things that we won't miss about the chain.

borders by Ildar Sagdejev.jpg
Ildar Sagdejev
1. People Sitting on the Floor and Reading

One thing we'll give Barnes and Noble credit for is they tend to keep a nice leash on this behavior. There's nothing wrong with reading in a bookstore. They have chairs, benches and even a whole coffee shop section just for that reason. There is something wrong with staking out a claim in the middle of a walkway like some kind of hipster prospector mining for angst.

It wouldn't bother us so much except that offenders of this kind obviously plan on doing it. They have their iPod out, their giant bag regardless of gender, and they sit with their legs sticking straight out. They want to be a stumbling block in your way so they can glare at you for interrupting their pursuit of fine literature when you almost trip over them. Borders seemed to attract these people the most.

2. DVDs Locked Up Like Gold

Yes, people steal DVDs, but do they really steal DVDs out of proportion to books? Maybe, but for high priced books, like comic trades of technical journals, Borders always seemed comfortable just throwing a magnetic alarm strip somewhere in the middle of the book. Not for DVDs, though. No these must be secured in a metal case and only one chosen person may have the key.

That person, by the way, never, ever works in the DVD section. You always had to find the person to unlock the case, and then they had to take it down to the counter themselves. We're sure that the loss of an Ally McBeal complete series box set was a worry, but can the same honestly be said for the $19.99 single disc of Black Adder Series 2 we wanted?

Location Info

Venue

Map

Borders Books - Stafford - CLOSED

12788 Fountain Circle, Stafford, Stafford, TX

Category: General

Borders Books - Galleria

5061 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: General

Borders Books - Baybrook - CLOSED

19419 Gulf Freeway, Webster, TX

Category: General

Borders Books Music Movies and Cafe - CLOSED

9595 Six Pines Drive, The Woodlands, Spring, TX

Category: General

Borders Books - Westheimer - CLOSED

9633 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX

Category: General

Borders Books - Meyerland

570 Meyerland Plaza, Houston, TX

Category: General

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8 comments
trisch
trisch

I'll miss their rewards program, too.  It was free, and the weekly 30% and 40% off coupons were a really nice touch, especially since they could be applied to any book in the store and not just whatever book du jour was being featured that week -- like B&N's coupons.

Sad that people would go in and taunt the employees like that.  Wonder if employees at Circuit City or other liquidated chains had to run the same gauntlet? :(

ROK
ROK

Anyone gloating about the current 'liquidation prices' shouldn't be too critical of others.  Amazing to me that these people aren't bright enough to realize they aren't getting a deal in the first few weeks of a liquidation and if they'd just wait it would be well worth it.  Instead, these stores look like they suffered a third world country looting for 10% off. 

"OMG, this book was pushed to it's full MSRP, then they took 10% off!  What a deal!  buybuybuybuy"

Retsynyssetag
Retsynyssetag

They were a little overpriced for me, and their e-readers didn't work well at all but it was a great environment.

Jef With One F
Jef With One F

They were a bit overpriced sometimes, but they had a fantasic (and up until near the end totally free) rewards program that meant I almost never paid more than 70% of lits price. Plus they had a great "Buy 1, get another half off" table.

the eReader... meh. I'm still avoiding that particularl revolution.

Laurie
Laurie

It is sad that people went out of their way to be ugly to the employees.  I can't imagine going in and basically kicking someone when they are down.  

I am as big an online advocate as the next guy but I do lament the loss of customer service that you mentioned in your last point.  And Barnes and Noble is not going to have any real incentive to go out of their way because they are the only game in town for those people that want to walk the aisles of a real book store.

Celeste
Celeste

Not to harp on the wrong thing, but...went to a B&N last night near Rice Village and tripped over a ton of people sitting on the floor reading. One girl was huddled in a corner with her effing Kindle/Nook/whatever plugged in like a robot. One lady sprawled out in the aisle. I guess the Borders sitters have migrated...

Jessica Vance
Jessica Vance

A couple weeks ago, I went to B&N out here in the suburbs and there were people sitting all over the floor. And they mean-mugged you when you tried to look at something in their area. Kinda gross to be laying on the floor where all those flip-flop clad feet have been.

skot
skot

Nice article, Jef.  Very bitter sweet, like an obit.  I am sorry to see them go, too, just as I lament the increasing prevalence of online book stores and ebooks.  Guess I just need to sit on the porch on my rocking chair and nag at kids as they walk by.

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