Saturday, April 08, 2006

Goodbye, old friend

I can't believe that the Paper Cat is gone. P-Square won't be the same without this gem of a stationary shop. Robert Jamieson contributes today's eulogy.

The Paper Cat was the only stationary shop in town open past five on a Friday afternoon in December, when we were scrambling to find giftwrap for a last-minute donation to the Virginia Mason giving tree. I remember being completely enchanted as soon as I walked in the door. The atmosphere was uniquely Seattle: warm, laid-back, inviting. The shop was small but brimming with gorgeous paper, stationary and cards. I vowed I'd return in the spring to buy one of their beautiful journals...and now, it's gone. Like so many other local favorites, it fell victim to indifferent new building owners and obscene rent hikes.

Look, Seattle: I've been to Dublin. You do not want to end up like that, a soulless city that caters to tourists instead of locals. A new array of shiny buildings and expensive boutiques can't replace what we lose when we tear down the old churches, defoliate P-Square and drive out the mom-and-pop shops. For once, can't we decide that we don't want to be like everyone else? I want to come home to a city I remember.