Jeffrey and I were walking around today through what Julie calls our fishing village neighborhood. There are a lot of small, independent businesses there, and we make it a point to patronize them -- to a point. There's a small used bookstore that's closing for good downtown, and Jeffrey lamented the fact that we didn't have a good used bookstore anymore. I said, sure we do, the Internet. And he said it's hard for independent businesses to compete with what the Internet can offer.
But then I thought about it: What if the Internet, as an aggregate, is like Wal-Mart for small, independent businesses? I shop online because I can get anything I want for cheap. It's very convenient. And aren't those the reasons people say they shop at Wal-Mart? I make a personal decision to not shop at Wal-Mart, but that seems like it might be a little empty to me now.
The second thought I had when we were out walking was that I wondered if dogs' paws hurt when they walk on the hard concrete. That made me feel bad for them. My feet would hurt if they were on the concrete, and I don't even shuffle along as fast as they do. Maybe that is mitigated by the fact that their weight is dispersed over 4 feet, however. Then again, their feet are really, really small, and they actually only walk on the pads, which are even smaller. At any rate, I wonder if they should wear little pawshoes.