It's no news to anyone about the impending death of Toys "R" Us so we won't dwell on the details that led to the demise of our brick and mortar memory palace. Instead I will just wax poetic about the memories of that all too special place and why I am utterly heartbroken that this time next year, there may be no remaining stores.
When I was a kid we would visit my grandparents in Corpus Christi, Texas and it was inevitable that they would take us on an excursion to the local toy stores and the mother of all stores was of course Toys "R" Us. They would indulge our wants and spoil us like crazy. It was at that very location that I picked out a purple Bogglin named Squidge that I would take everywhere with me. Perusing the aisle, my brother would always head for the GI Joes and I would look at all the oddball stuff, like Bogglins.
It wasn't the actual acquiring of the toys but the looking at all there was to offer. The song was not kidding when it states, "from bikes to trains to videogames, it's the biggest toy store there is" because that truly is what it was. Like a place of magic and in the wonderful days of the 80's they would usually have an open item of the toy you wanted so you could get in a test run of whatever it was that tickled your fancy.
Flash-forward to the 1990's. On Friday nights my mom would drop my friend Clark and I off at the mall until it closed and every Friday night we would cross the parking lot and head into the Toys "R" Us. It's where I discovered Todd Toys (later McFarlane Toys) and picked up my first Spawn figure. When I started driving, regularly I would go and check out what new toys were out and usually pick up something special, which are now all in a large plastic bin in storage.
When I was skipping class in college I would always hit up Toys "R" Us, Kay-Bee's and walk around the Six Flags Mall. All places that, will soon, have to live solely in my memories.
When my daughter was born I was overjoyed not only because I made a kid but because I would now have a reason to venture to my childhood mecca. Over the span of her life we have made trips to Toys "R" Us and she rarely leaves empty handed. I've spent tons of time there looking for birthday and Christmas gifts but also just trips for my own enjoyment.
The closure of Toys "R" Us isn't only sad because it strips away an opportunity to take a trip down memory lane for me but it also strips away the opportunity I would have had to take my grandchildren on the same trips my grandparents too me on. And maybe that is why this sucks so bad for the adults who grew up with Geoffrey, not because of our nostalgia but because our children and their children will be missing out on the magic that is Toys "R" Us.