uhmmmm...i'm still do-dontish about being on here. LJ is buggin' on me lately. but cheeze found some old trading stamps in her dad's jacket and reminded me how i used to save these eagle stamps in books. my mom would get a stamp for every ten cents she spent at pick n' pray or may company, and i would paste them in these little books, and when i had a full book i could turn it in for a three-dollar merchandise credit. two or three books would get me a record album at the may company department store, depending on whether i wanted a single album or a double album, and whether the one i wanted was on sale or full price. it would take a pretty long time to fill up one stamp book. but that is how i got all my records when i was 12-13 years old. because i had no allowance or job and hence had no cash to buy them. and, at that age, the may company record department was about all i could handle. i was too nervous to go into actual record stores which were always run by scary-looking horrible dope-smokin'-hippie-peter-laughner-junki
(even years later, when i was like 16-17, i would be leery about approaching the checkout counter in those places. i once procrastinated so long in melody lane, even though i had money and two records all picked out to buy, that the store manager, some Music Industry Guy named sheldon who still pops up from time to time in the Pee Dee, came up to me and started pestering about "could he help me with something", translation: you've been hanging around in here for two freaking hours, time to go, kid! and the first time i ever bought a CLE 'zine, the one with "Fill It Up With UBU" on the cover and the "Pushin' Too Hard" flexi in the middle, they were keeping 'em behind the counter and I had to ask for one and I felt like i was going to faint dead away...i dunno why, maybe I thought the counter dude would say, "Sorry, you can't have a CLE 'zine, you're not cool enough!" )
and also in Real record stores there would be drug paraphernalia like bongs and papers (which my mom fortunately didn't have a clue about, but it still made me nervous to be around) and record sleeves with nekkid wimmen and shite (which she unfortunately DID have a clue about and would yell at me for hours if she happened to see one, even if i wasn't looking at it and had no interest in the band). i suspect all this has a lot to do with why i have never felt too comfortable browsing in record stores and have bought almost every record i own mail order for years.
so i thought some of you might find that amusing. i didn't mind too much at the time, having to save stamps for months to buy a record from some department store clerk who looked like Lucy's boss Mr. Mooney, but when i look back on it, all i can think is what a drag it was having to live that way. but back then i didn't know there Was any other way.