Apfelbaum’s Corner – Volume 57
Ask your corner grocer— if you still have one— what mark-up he must place on slow-moving items that currently sell for ten cents or less. Then go to your local 5 & 10 store to see if there is such a thing as 5 & 10 cent merchandise. If you really want to spend an enlightening day, visit all the stores in your local shopping area seeking out items that sell for ten cents or less. The chances are you’ll find mighty few of them and the reason is simple; it isn’t possible for a clerk to handle the receipt, checking, placing on sale and selling of such inexpensive goods in sufficient enough quantities to pay today’s wages and the general overhead even in the best run business.
Yet there are thousands of stamp-collectors who expect to buy the inexpensive individual stamps required for their collection at a dime or less each— on special order! Granted, the stamps involved are common and pretty general with no individual intrinsic value, but the supplier of the stamps has salaries and rent to pay— and his own time to account for it.
Alas, I join with you in regretting the passing of the penny, nickel and dime stamp business, but so, too, do I regret the passing of the ten cent-shoe shine.