Monday, December 21, 2009

Searching for Tunes in A Big Box Store

I like to read fluff at the gym to pass the time on the Lifecycle so last weekend I went there armed with a cooking magazine to find inspiration for the holidays or at least a dinner during the week. But walking in I spied the November SPIN magazine sitting on the reading rack. On the front was a big photo of Wayne Coyne, frontman for The Flaming Lips which is a fav band of mine. My cover to cover reading ran beyond my time on the machine so I 'borrowed' the mag until my next visit.

Inside the issue was a promotion for a special edition mini-magazine which came with a compilation CD of suggested offerings, available at Best Buy stores. I'm always tempted by any exposure of new bands so when I found myself walking by a Best Buy during my next NYC jaunt, I went in to look around for it.

First, let me say how much I absolutely abhor big box stores. Be it for groceries, housewares or any kind of bargains, these retail outlets overwhelm me the moment I walk through the door. The blaring TVs greeted me as I circled around to find a sad CD section right by the clattering of live instruments for sale. I found a blue-shirted salesman to ask where I might find a SPIN magazine or any magazine for that matter. He seemed stumped by the question, so it was repeated into his headphones for back up. A manager walked by and the request was shouted out loud, only to hear another question in reply. "What's SPIN?" Ouch.

I retreated into the cold, defeated in my mission. The worst part is that this store sits where there was a huge temple to music known as the Virgin Megastore just a few months ago, a scene of many happy splurges of CDs and band paraphernalia. As I hit the sidewalk I reached for my gloves, only to find I had lost one during my misadventure. So back into the dreaded store I went, retracing my steps to no avail. I had to continue my evening in the big city with one hand shoved in my pocket to keep warm and no new tunes for my ears.