"Scene" at Play by Play

In some ways, there's no point in me adding my voice to something that others have said far better than I. But this morning, Patrick, Beatrix and I headed down to the all-too-sad closing sale at Play by Play Books. As Beatrix played in the shop that she loves and feels at home with (and rifled the candy bowl), and as Patrick discussed on the phone with him mom what books she needed, I looked around and already felt a profound sense of loss. I wanted to buy every book in the store, to give them homes, to know that that knowledge was somewhere safe. Even more, I wanted the sense of community that Kelly has worked so hard to foster. But as Kelly gave up her dream to realize, community is harder to form than you might think.

I'm not saying anyone in particular is to blame — not those who did not shop there, not Kelly for her choice of location, to construction or Amazon.com or anything else. But I am saying that I picked up a big bag of books today for $80, and while times have been pretty tight lately and books are just one of the things I have not been buying, well, that purchase would not have been much more, and would have done Kelly a lot more good, 2 months ago. So I guess what I've learned is that if I want something in my community, I have to be part of it. I know that intellectually, but this was a pretty hard-hitting demonstration.

If you want to support Kelly and Play by Play, there's a lot left in the closing sale, going on now. But what would mean perhaps as much to her? If there's a local place that you love, go in this weekend. Make a point to support them, to tell them you want them in your community.

I'm sorry, Kelly. I'm going to miss your dream more than you know.

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