“Enough of the false nostalgia: we don’t really miss HMV. If we’d cared, it wouldn’t have died”, proclaims Tom Chivers in the Telegraph.
Well, perhaps. Like Chivers I have not bought anything from HMV in years; nor had I been into Woolworths or Comet prior to their closing. And I am too young to have ever known a time when one would toddle down the cobble-stoned street picking up goods from the butcher, the baker, and the candle-stick maker, meeting kindly neighbours along the way.
But I do feel that that would have been a nice experience, and I do think someone can feel sad at the passing of high street stores even if they didn’t use them much.
I don’t doubt that the web and online shopping have – apologies for the forthcoming Spock-like language – seen a net increase increase in utility for most people. But just because an old way of doing something has been superseded by a newer and better way, does not mean that there is not a sadness to in the older thing’s passing.