Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Up In Smoke


Last February

About a year after the Amherst Board of Health increased the legal age to purchase tobacco products in town from 18 up to 21, the Wild Side Smoke shop in town center is no more.   Becoming just another empty downtown storefront.

 This morning

At least this one we can't blame on the stellar UMass food service program, which seems to keep students on campus and away from our downtown restaurants.  

 Branch on College Street is still open

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

Where is that expensive economic director? I haven't seen or heard anything out of him.

Larry Kelley said...

He gave a Powerpoint presentation to the Select Board on Monday night.

Although his idea of forming yet another committee to assist him with economic issues did not go over well with the Temporary Town Manager.

Anonymous said...

Larry, the town demanded that UM keep (and house) its students on campus -- and then when it does, well...

The larger issue is that students don't have the money they did in years past...

Anonymous said...

UMass students are not required to stay on campus. They just say that. One letter mentioning your right to travel and associate as you see fit and they will not fight, you do not even have to ask if you are an adult, especially because it is a state school. The state cannot make someone live somewhere unless they are prisoners or kids, aka future prisoners. Amherst College can require this, Umass, nope, just a bluff. Just like most rules, they are just there for those who are not willing to think or exert their rights. Cute and sad, though, that the town and University said they were in charge and those without backbones complied and those without brains believed them.

Adam Sweet said...

When I was at Hampshire (1980s), I had a job at the Cumberland Farms in South Amherst as a cashier. I made $3.50 an hour and my boss chainsmoked all day. I worked my way through college, ending up as the day manager there when I graduated. UMass kids don't have jobs any more.

Did you read that article about the 14 businesses closed on Main St in Northampton? I know there's discussion on here about how anti-business Amherst is, but could this be a thing, really? Are rents really to blame here? I suspect the internet/mobile/Amazon is largely to blame for people's change in shopping habits.

Anonymous said...

Hooray! Finally some good news!

Anonymous said...

Adam Sweet- what about those Hampshire Colleges students? Do they work? Stereotype much? Old man-yes you will blame UMass for the smokeshop closing-because that's what you do- you are a broken record!WYB

Dr. Ed said...

Adam -- What was the tuition at Hamp back in the 1980's? Even if it increased at the same percentage as the minimum wage, the ratio now is not what it was then, and hence it is a bad investment of sparse time.

Anonymous said...

@ Adam It's really disingenuous to say that "Umass kids don't have jobs anymore." Some of my students have 2 or 3 jobs. One of my students had 2 jobs AND an unpaid internship. I'm very confused about why you'd say something so unfounded...

Anonymous said...

Hampshire would have been a great investment if the kids there in the 80's were exploring emerging technologies rather than emerging fungi.

Dr. Ed said...

http://fee.org/articles/barely-half-of-student-loans-are-being-repaid/

Tell me again that the whole bubble isn't bursting. 'Hamp is a college town too, has been since Fuller Brush & Bradley's closed in the early 1990's, probably earlier.

Anonymous said...

This is a good sign that Amherst residents are informed enough to make good decisions about their health and not frequent these disease-associated shops. Nice to see them closing without having to change zoning preventing them from operating in Amherst.

Anonymous said...

I'm too old for this shit.

Anonymous said...

Please more on the presentation and town manager response. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

"Tell me again that the whole bubble isn't bursting."

It isn't bursting. That's why it is so hard to buy the buildings downtown. Believe me, I've tried.

Anonymous said...

"Nice to see them closing without having to change zoning preventing them from operating in Amherst."

That is so disgusting. Allow me to paraphrase.

"Glad they closed so we don't have to use our special interest powers to bully the town into sending enforcement to restrict the rights of people to make a living. My life will be better if they don't so, screw them and their desires or needs"

It is never nice when someone would even consider restricting someone's basic freedoms to sell stuff and make jobs. It is fascist, by definition. Not nice, shameful, sign of weakness because you are not smart enough to convince people to do what you want, so you send someone with a weapon after them if they do not comply with your petty desires. You are supposed to respect their right to do business with other adults, even if you don't like it. At a minimum, it would be appropriate to tolerate it, the thing that some people do when they cannot muster respect. Tolerance is not something to be proud of, but better than forcing someone to change for you if you cannot muster respect in your soul.

The only major disease in these shops is the Tobacco Mosaic Virus and that is put there on purpose as a vaccine of sorts in the Tobacco. There is a disease in town though, that of lack of respect for others (unless they are outwardly a different color, like non-standard relationships, their body is the shape of a pretzel or their brain is mush, then we will at least pretend.)

The only thing worse than being around smokers is being around fascists.

Anonymous said...

A-hole with a capital A!

Anonymous said...

Keep pontificating, Ed. You don't live here.

Anonymous said...

New Tibetan restaurant opening on Main Street next month. New cookie store opening next to CVS. I guess Ed's death of Amherst prediction will have to wait. Sorry, Ed. You lose. Again.

Jackie M'Vemba said...

Bingo. Great post.

Anonymous said...

What do they eat in Tibet? Can you smoke in there?

Anonymous said...

Looks like a middle eastern eatery is opening soon next to the former carriage shops...yum!!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, cookie store should last two months at most. As for the restaurant, most fail. In Amherst, the odds are higher.

Anonymous said...

I love how we hate smoking unless it's ganja. It's olay to burn that stuff and suck it into your lungs right? And apparently it's really good to make a living selling that particular smokeable.

Anonymous said...

Here's to hoping that a useful business takes the place of the former smoke shop. Hope is faint. But there's hope nonetheless.

Anonymous said...

This would be a good opportunity for a local "employee" type to put their money where their mouth is, open a "useful" business, that is if employees had the skills to open businesses in stead of waiting for the leftover opportunity of those that do...and do not automate.



Jackie M'Vemba said...

I miss the gray goose and Amherst music.

Anonymous said...

Cigarette smoking is legal! Smoke 'em if ya got 'em!