Tuesday, December 16, 2008

... and the blogosphere went wild...

... abuzz with the news that, yes, Ikea is finally coming to Winnipeg!

The news has set tongues wagging and hearts aflutter in the blogosphere and mainstream media outlets, gushing that THE preeminent House of Scandinavian Style is coming to our cold little burg.

But not here at C & S. I could care less.

Seriously.

It's just a fucking store, not a miracle civic cure-all, not the magic bullet that'll solve all the city's woes. It ain't gonna bring in tourists - maybe a few shoppers from Gretna, Winkler, and The Pas (no offense intended) - and it won't affect life in the North End.

What can Ikea offer us apart from their colourful, cheaply made wares? A slight increase in tax revenue? Blog-fodder? A few dozen more jobs created? Free meatballs? Another retail development in the burbs? Polo Park-like traffic snarls?

Spare me.

However, in some people's eyes, having an international retailer such as Ikea* set up shop here represents a step toward being a "real" city. That strikes me as being particularily shallow, but I suppose anything that lessens our collective (civic) self-loathing can only be a good thing.

What do the rest of you think?

*Fine print: For the record, I'd have had this same reaction if it were an Apple Store or similar "big city" retailer coming to Winnipeg - my feelings in this regard aren't limited to Ikea.