As a kid, I spent a lot of time in malls – less as a rampant consumer than as a bored teenager, but still it was a place to go. Said malls usually had one or two stores I loved to shop in, typically a video arcade or a Waldenbooks (about the only place I could find AD&D manuals and sci-fi/fantasy pulp fiction). They also had junk food, shelter from Wisconsin winters and summers, and age appropriate girls.
As an adult, I can’t stand malls and I spend as little time in them as is needed to get what I need and be gone. Yet I can’t help being a bit sad to see many of them struggling and shuttering, especially some of the ones that were a part of my formative years. As an adult, it is interesting to look back – further back than my own birth – to see some of the history of the places. This link has some history on a mall that was a place I frequented until I left home for the Navy (and even during the few times I’ve gone back home). I remember going there to buy a shirt for my mother’s funeral service, because I had to deliver the eulogy and the shirt I had packed had been ruined by a too hot iron.
Lots of memories in these places, for many of us, I suspect.
I was born into the era of malls. The nostalgia is there, but I won’t miss them terribly if they vanish. I hope they do become better places, parks, centers of community, more mixed use urban spaces – or even just better malls – something more than just box like enclosed shopping plazas.
BREAKING: A Hennepin Co. judge has dismissed one of the murder charges against former Mpls. police officer Derek Chauvin. The judge granted Chauvin's motion to dismiss the 3rd-degree murder charge. The most serious charge, 2nd-degree murder, and the manslaughter charge remain.