So, here we go again. A fresh batch of Trader Joe's coming to town rumors. And once again the reactions from both sides come flooding: people are either applying for new credit cards for some TJ spending or are lighting the torches, getting ready to burn the place to the ground.
We don't necessarily bowl over from excitement over Trader Joe's here at Team SpoCOOL, but frankly, we also don't quite understand the outrage either.
The lingering question is how a large chainstore like Trader Joe's would affect local businesses like Main Market Co-op and Huckleberry's. My guess: At first they would take a hit, but then again, those of us who get our fresh meat and vegetables, cheeses, wine, and beer would likely not forsake local markets in the long run. The people who already shop at these places tend to be well-rounded; many might make Trader Joe's a regular stop, but that doesn't mean they'll start ignoring the International Food Stores of the world.
Those that might feel more of a lasting hit would be Safeway's organic cereal. Or Fred Meyer's very privately selected chocolates. Or whatever. Frankly, I doubt they'd need to close shop over any of this.
More importantly: You can shout and you can scream, but for those of us who live in the real world, having stores like Trader Joe's -- and, indeed, the Apple Store that opens on Saturday (and will hire more than 70 people which obviously is horrible for the local economy) -- gives a city a good outward image. It shows that a city can attract sought after businesses, which in turn attracts people, both those who are looking to settle here and tourists, and other businesses.
We wouldn't stand in line in front of Trader Joe's on opening day any more than we would stand in line for an Apple Store or any other store, local or otherwise. But that's not to say we would hate having a Trader Joe's either.