The Big Question

It's not "Do you have V for Vendetta" (while ignoring the nice display table. Nor is it "What's this whole Infinite Crisis thing?" Nor even, "why do comics cost so much?" No, by far the most asked question at MacGuffin is, "how's business?"

This is a difficult question for me to answer, not because I'm concerned about divulging "private" information, but because it's a question that immediately implies a comparison to a non-existent frame of reference. I generally say something along the lines of "there are good days and bad days." Or "getting better." But what am I really talking about? I mean, sure its getting better when compared with the first few weeks, but we had several days without a sale those first few weeks. Not exactly a high watermark. Again, of course there are good days and bad days, but are there ore good or bad? Basically I avoid answering the question.

The main reason that I avoid answering the question, is because I appreciate so much that it gets asked. People seem genuinely excited by the store. Even those people who aren't particularly comic fans or don't really know what the sign means when it says graphic novel, they seem to like the idea of the store. It's a nice, comfortable place to find something you haven't seen before. But what I think most people mean by "how's business" is "is this place going to make it?" I believe (or hope anyway) that they want to hear good news. I could lie and say that we're way ahead of schedule, but I don't much like lying to customers. So, I go with the non-answer.

What I don't want to do is tell the truth, because I don't think anyone really wants to hear me complain about business. Because let's be honest here, I'm doing something I really enjoy. I can count on one finger the number of mornings I've dreaded coming to this store. On the other hand, I can't count the number of days I've been excited just to get into the store and wait with anticipation until someone comes in. I love this place and I want other people to love it to. So when I see the enthusiasm of others and hear their interest in how the store is doing, the last thing I want to do is break out the ledger and point out all of the red ink.

So when you come in, please feel free to ask how we're doing. I love that you're interested in seeing the store stick around. Just be prepared for some vague answers and some crossed fingers.


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