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Sketches by Boz
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Sketches by Boz > Scenes, 03: Shops and Their Tenants

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Tristram Shandy Dear Pickwickians,

here you can enter your ideas on "Shops and Their Tenants".


Tristram Shandy I really enjoyed this Sketch because don't we all know a house that has seen many shops and businesses come and go? I am not a superstitious man but sometimes I do think that some houses might be jinxed.

It is just like Dickens, though, to tell a kind of story here which is, on the whole, lighthearted and distantly ironic in tone and yet has some strong sentimental appeal - when he writes about the stationer's eldest daughter. This is la comédie humaine, all in all it seems to be a comedy, but there are definitely a lot of dark and serious patches in it.


message 3: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 2034 comments Tristram wrote: "I really enjoyed this Sketch because don't we all know a house that has seen many shops and businesses come and go? "

That is particularly true of my island. While we have far more restaurants per capita than is usual (partly because we are so tourist dependent, partly because we have no chain restaurants at all -- no McDonalds or Burger King or Subway, no Olive Garden or Dennys or Red Robin, no nothing that you will find anywhere off the island -- there is not a single restaurant that is still operating in the same place it was when I arrived here, and I can only think of one shop which is still in the same location it was when I moved here, and that's my barber shop. (Oh, and the high school is still where it was, even though they've been planning to move it for over fifteen years. But the elementary school has moved.) We play musical businesses with a vengeance. Mostly, I think, because people come here, they love it, they want to live here, there are very few good jobs here, so they buy or open a restaurant or little business, but it almost inevitably fails because they don't understand the nuances of business in a tourist location.


message 4: by Kate (new)

Kate I loved the insight into what shops were like in those days, as well as what types of shops there were. I'm guessing from this and other texts, that shops and street sellers (sorry, can't think of their proper names) worked very long hours. Here, in Australia, most shops will close at 5.30pm with the exception of the supermarkets and the 'corner shop'. It's pretty much the same in the UK and from what I remember, in CT, USA (except for the larger books shops). When I was a kid, back in the 70s and 80s, I remember that the shops were all closed on a Sunday. I wonder why there has been this shift back again?

I've also come across several shops and houses that forever seem to be changing hands. It is bizarre. I've also seen houses just abandoned too. The one that sticks out in my head was about a mile away from Haworth, the Bronte's home village. This house was up on the moor, just opposite my house. It was very eerie. It was an old, stone house and we used to dare each other to go and look through the windows as kids. LOL. It was a lovely place it was in too. Such a shame to go to waste. I wonder why that was neglected too?


message 5: by Kim (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kim Everyman wrote: "there are very few good jobs here, so they buy or open a restaurant or little business, but it almost inevitably fails because they don't understand the nuances of business in a tourist location."

Maybe they should open a "McDonalds or Burger King or Subway, or Olive Garden or Dennys or Red Robin." :-}


message 6: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 2034 comments Kim wrote: "Maybe they should open a "McDonalds or Burger King or Subway, or Olive Garden or Dennys or Red Robin." :-} "

For anybody who tries, the tar is hot and the feathers plentiful.


message 7: by Hilary (new) - added it

Hilary (agapoyesoun) Everyman and Kim, your exchange is much more entertaining than this scene! Thank you :)


message 8: by Kim (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kim Well one of us has to think logically. The businesses on his island close after a few months.....open a McDonalds, who ever heard of a McDonalds closing unless they were building a bigger one down the street. :-}


message 9: by Hilary (new) - added it

Hilary (agapoyesoun) So true ;)


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