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Malls once meant something to people. Now they have become empty shells of history

Though I mocked the entire process of Black Friday, I did venture out for a bit yesterday just to peruse a few local shopping centers. These locations are in trouble. They have been for some time. Not even Black Friday could save them. They were desolate and empty, Christmas music was blaring loudly and echoing through almost empty corridors. And even though other malls may have been busier places, the nationwide verdict is in: People didn't go out in big numbers for Black Friday, or Thanksgiving night just as well. It was a bust..

I went to lunch with a friend and actually purchase most of my gifts waiting for my sandwich by shopping online. I didn't hit complete order yet, but the cart is awaiting my approval. In a few days I'll get my gifts in the mail. The gifts I want, the name brands I want. I think the days of malls are over.. perhaps even the days of Walmart would theoretically be coming as well.

What are we losing in that process though?
Malls were the plaza of pop culture, the place where families went for an entire evening out. I recall fond memories myself, with my sister getting 'lost' in the mall with friends while my mother and father allowed me to check the racks of the toy store for the newest He-Man action figure.

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We have moved on from the mall scene. It's over. Those remaining are desperate.. a few may survive. Some may even somehow thrive. But by the time this year is over, I think lots of malls are going to figure out that it was their last Christmas. Perhaps even mine.

MASHABLE is running a good story called 1989 AMERICA'S MALLS. This was a prime time. I remember that is when I was five.. BATMAN was in theaters... Retail was strong. Bon Ton still wrapped gifts.. and life was good.  The MASHABLE article profiles Michael Galinsky's photoset of malls that he started taking in 1989. There are no themes to his photos. Instead just moments captured in time in 1989.  They are reminders of the iconic mall's stance in our collective lives. TIME magazine has the story behind the photoset, one that was revealed a few years ago now.

Fast forward to now.

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Seph Lawless, my favorite photographer who risks jail time to get the perfect picture, is offering up a book just in time for Christmas on his website called BLACK FRIDAY SEASON IN THE SIZE OF DAYS. It shows abandoned malls in all four seasons.. Winter spring summer and fall.. it gives us a glimpse of what has occurred in the malls that once housed our romantic love, our fun nights out, and a dinners with families on a Sunday afternoon..

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