I'm still letting things
fester rest in the hopes that my mental dough will soften and expand and grow without my constant prodding. Your comments encouraged and inspired and even amazed me. You are a very bright bunch.
While the dough is rising, I have another window to challenge your creative imaginations. Downtown Portland is losing yet another establishment. A real, genuine old-school photography store is closing its doors. First the used bookstore, now the photography store, what next? I hope they leave my beloved International House of Rotary Phones well enough alone.
The space is interesting. It's in the old Mechanics Hall building on Congress, sharing the bottom floor with an equally classic used clothing and consignment shop. To the right, a rather dreary and uninspired example of 1970s urban renewal. Foot traffic is a blend of professional, hipster, and drooler.
For me, the real appeal is the facade -- including that fabulous green sign -- and the deep display windows that run along either side of the entry. Inside is a deep space to house all your delights. The dropped ceiling and fluorescent lights could easily be ripped out and the taller ceiling restored.
For some reason I envision a really cool Japanese bookstore like Kinokuniya in New York City - most notably because of its basement jammed full of amazing Japanese knitting and felting and sewing and otherwise crafty books, plus reams of paper pads and notebooks of every imaginable size, pens, erasers, pencils, desk gadgets, stickers, tapes, staplers, and all those bizarre yet completely charming accessories you simply must have. Paper stores are my Kryptonite.
But that's just me. If I were to hand you a blank check and the world were truly your oyster, what would you put in there?