The awkwardly named, Cost Plus World Market is going out of business.

This is somewhat sad to me, because I always thought that it was pretty neat for a chain store.  Its selection was reasonably interesting (if somewhat static), and I could even find proper (albeit stale and overpriced) Smarties there if I was really jonesing.  It’s also never let me down for Awesome Christmas (an amusing little tradition where one must get a large number of people presents that perfectly suit them, for under $3).

Besides the various strange foodstuffs, stupid toy things, and papasan chairs, Cost Plus also had the distinction of being home to the one piece of furniture that I’ve ever really coveted — the Spruce Bar.

Basically, it’s a wine-rack/bar thing, with extra storage on the doors, and leaves that fold out to double the width when you find yourself needing a larger surface area for your mixology.  It’s constructed out of a mahgony stained hardwood, and manages to have both arts & crafts and asian influences.  It’s the perfect thing for my dining room, and has been since I bought the house.  It also was $550, which, while probably a perfectly reasonable price for what it is, I just could never really justify paying.

So instead, I would console myself by just visiting the Spruce Bar.  Stopping by to look at it whenever I happened
to be in the store (or even near the store), hoping that the price would change for the better, but it was stubbornly firm.  I’d mentioned to Nerd 2 more than once how much I liked it, and even dragged him around an entire HOM Furniture looking for something similar but to no avail.  Once, I found a $100 off coupon for, and I almost pulled the trigger (it was the $50 shipping cost that killed that deal).

In truth, it’s been a while since I’ve truly pined for the Spruce Bar.  I think the stress of buying new living room furniture  (and a fridge) may have stifled my desire to reappoint the dining room somewhat, and the $50 wireframe wine-rack that I’d picked up at Costco seemed to be doing the job well enough (despite the fact that its open design has a nasty habit of light-striking any actual wine stored in it).  So, when I’d heard that Cost Plus was going under, like I said, I was sad, but I didn’t really realize the true import of the event.  The Spruce Bar is a Cost Plus exclusive — I wouldn’t even be able to visit it anymore.

Luckily, Nerd 2 is a little better at putting 2 and 2 together than I am.  And, given that:

  • he was instructed that a  Valentine’s Day present was expected this year (I generally am pretty against celebrating v-day, especially with gifts because I believe that true love is shown every day of the year, via actions, not things*.  But given that said actions are going to be a little more difficult for about 12 months starting this Feb, I decided to make an exception).
  • he was not given any hints about what I had in mind for him to get me (because its fun to watch nerds squirm)
  • if I had missed my chance to get the stupid thing, he’d have to hear about it for years.
  • the impending closure implied CLEARANCE PRICES

His path of action was pretty clear.  So, numerous phone calls, trips to Roseville, Maple Grove, and Minne-frickin-tonka, and many, many, allen wrenched screws in awkward places later,  I came home last night to find my long lost (lumber-based) soulmate, standing smack dab in the middle of the living room.  From what I understand, it may have been the last of the things in the Twin Cities (even the website doesn’t have it, though there is a picture of it as the icon for “Bars and Wineracks” on the furniture page), hence the trip to the scary land out east.   So, if you want a Bar-ry (Not Barry, more like  Chairy, but  a bar) of your own… too bad suckers!
*fact: this may be the lamest thing that has ever been written on this here blog-thingy.  I promise not to let it happen again.

it’s escaped!

Sometimes, good things hatch in the lesser corners of the internet, and desperately claw their way towards the surface of mainstream acceptance.

This little idea hasn’t made it to the light yet, but I did find it gestating on some other site, and I felt like, to be fair, it deserved some exposure here.

So here’s the deal:

The first six (6) people to respond to this post will get something made by me. It will be about or tailored to those six who respond first.

  • This offer does have some restrictions and limitations:
  • I make no guarantees that you will like what I make.
  • What I create will be just for you.
  • It’ll be done this year.
  • You have no clue what it’s going to be. It may be a mix CD. It may be a story. I may build something. I might bake you something and mail it to you. Who knows? Not you, that’s for sure!
  • I reserve the right to do something extremely strange.
  • Since I’ve already posted this on that other site, and gotten 3 takers, only the first 3 TPH sign-ups get pressies.

The catch? You have to put this in your blog, bbs, face-space-journal,  as well, if you expect me to do something for you!

One of my news years promises to myself was to make more things (in more interesting mediums than my current ones) this year.  This meme is the perfect kick in the ass that I needed to make myself get around to actually doing something.

Join us! You know you want to!

ETA: Looks like I’m full up!  Jenni, Wendy, Joe, Lara, Matilda, and Alan — something is coming for you….