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My family will miss Greetings & Readings bookstore

Greetings & Readings, a retail fixture in the Baltimore area for nearly five decades, will close next month because of sharply declining sales and stiff online competition.
Greetings & Readings, a retail fixture in the Baltimore area for nearly five decades, will close next month because of sharply declining sales and stiff online competition.

The closing of Greetings & Readings ("Greetings & Readings, a Baltimore retail fixture, closing after 49 years," Dec. 27) hit our family especially hard. We will miss its role in expanding our network of friends and family.

As a dorky, awkward teenager, I could visit the girl I hoped to (and actually did) marry in the aisles of the Towson location, where because she was working she couldn’t escape my “witty” banter. Laura worked for there for seven years, and rightly credits Norton Baum, one of the original owners, with teaching her so many valuable work and life lessons. My mother-in-law toiled at Greetings & Readings building displays for 21 years, at times enlisting her parents to help with the crafting of intricate displays. One of my sisters-in-law and her husband met while working together there, and at least one other sister-in-law worked there. My confirmation teacher, now in her 80s, still works there, and a close friend has held together the company’s antiquated information technology system since before Mac and Windows were launched.

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The closing is sad and unfortunate, if not unexpected, and another sign of changing consumer habits. Not only is it a loss of a great store, but the ed of a marvelous place for people to meet and share bonds that last a lifetime.

Bob Graham, Parkville

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