12 January 2008
Dear Lorne,

Shortly after my return to Seattle from London and France, my time as the Anyone Can Host contest runner up was a distant memory. The landlord's brother called quoting the total owed from months of unpaid rent. No way could I have come up with that kind of money before his deadline. Maybe he was just bluffing, or trying to scare me, it worked. Not enough merchandise could be blown out in time to come up with anywhere near the sum required, so a storage locker up the street was rented to move as much as possible out of there before the locks were changed.

Back when first contemplating the retail venture, I asked the nice lady with the management company what sort of people opened stores like this? Her reply was, people like you and me.
My store manager for the first two years, who then left to start a mail order venture, did most the buying as well. It seemed like the blind leading the blind. The question had come up once that while I was being kicked in the head, maybe something was knocked loose. To this day, I still wonder. The singing telegram and balloon delivery could be run out of the apartment. Perhaps the merchandise could be sold over the internet, yet this was a few years before that concept got going. While explaining this predicament to my new girlfriend in London, not quite sure how she put it, but her suggestion was along the lines of 'why not just get rid of everything'?

So that sowed the idea, it was about time that I repot myself. Thus began the liquidation of some of the funniest merchandise people didn't yet know they wanted. Much was left in an employee's friend's garage to be sold closer to Halloween, when there might be more demand. A year earlier I had been drilling holes in the bare brick and cement, bit by bit turning the space into a store. Now I was taking everything out, selling to whoever for whatever they were willing to pay.

Have you ever started all over? With a couple kegs of microbrew,  a case of spumante and a guest list that grew to a few hundred, I was hoping the liquidation party would go through the weekend, but it only lasted until the alcohol ran out.  Although every precaution had been taken so that the police would have no excuse to break it up, that may have confirmed its legitimacy. Bands showed up and played, perhaps later becoming grunge superstars, shortly after I left town.

Every day is a new beginning,