Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Black Wolf Coffee

I go to a local coffee shop in Warrenton, Black Wolf Coffee, once in a while. Lately, I go there more frequently. Sherri makes the best mocha, and she recently has gotten me hooked (like a pusher) on coffee with two shots of espresso.

I heard that Starbucks had suffered a 97% drop in profits. Gees, I'll take the 3% profit in this economic climate. Stop your whining, Starbucks. You have nothing to complain about.

Danker Furniture announced the closing of three stores in the area. This does not make me happy in any way. It actually makes me sad, and a little nervous. Many jobs are lost, and all the knowledge and talent that has been acquired over the years at Danker is dissipating. Competition is good for businesses. It affords the ability to differentiate oneself from the pack. I like Sherri's coffee better. It has more love in the mix. Many people really liked Danker. They were reputable people who knew their jobs.

I worry about local businesses like Black Wolf. I go more often for several reasons. I figure I have $10 extra bucks a week to burn through, and if that makes a difference of keeping Black Wolf there in a year or not, I'm glad to do it. Also, I've been having some pretty interesting conversations with my barista (that always sounds so impressive) about stuff. Important stuff, like.......I don't know.........stuff. Really, going to Black Wolf makes me feel more centered, more focused on the day at hand. The visit is only for 5 minutes, but when I leave with a smile and a great cup of coffee, I'm good to go.

What I'm telling you is that we are all in this thing together, and some businesses are not doing so well. If they are worth having, go support them. Don't let the doom and gloom of the economic forecasters dictate when and where you spend your money. Gas prices are down, the election is over. Go get a cup of coffee and celebrate.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Washington Spaces

I met a very interesting person today by the name of Jennifer Sergent. She is a reporter for Washington Spaces Magazine, one of the magazines we advertise in.

We found some common ground in that she and I went to the same high school - Langley - though several (read many) years apart. Also, she has a blog - washingtonspaces.com/blog like I do.

I found the time with her refreshing, like talking with an old friend. It's nice to meet someone new who has shared similar experiences at some other time. It was as if I had known her for years. Have you ever had that happen to you?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Did you see us in the Examiner this week?

When I said in my last entry that I am a master craftsman, I did not expect people to take notice so quickly! If you’re looking for some quality reading material, let me suggest a pair of articles featured in the DC Examiner and the Baltimore Examiner.

The first, in the DC Examiner, is an interview I did about our furniture donation initiative with ACTS, which I discussed in a previous entry. Sorry if it sounds choppy… I only had three minutes to interview!

The second, in the Baltimore Examiner, quotes Alison--that thirty-something Marketing Director of ours--about our Murphy and wall beds. Speaking of which, last weekend’s Post ad featured the Library Wall Bed. I think they make excellent guest beds… nothing beats a real mattress for comfort, not to mention the inherent space-saving features of being able to fold a bed into a wall.

We typically sell a lot of these beds around the holidays to families expecting out-of-town visitors, and I have to imagine other furniture retailers experience a similar phenomenon. I’ve also seen some pretty innovative guest solutions out there, though in my house we just put rocks under the mattress to get guests to leave early. In your house, where do your guests go?