retail news in context, analysis with attitude

Responding to yesterday's story about a move to increase to 21 the age at which one can buy tobacco products, MNB reader Kelly Dean Wiseman wrote:

If we are going to immerse 18 year olds into a firefight in a middle east country, or expect them to discern friend from foe, under fire, following rules of engagement using extremely powerful and deadly weapons, they should be able to decide for themselves whether to have a beer or a smoke.

One MNB reader had a thought about the state-by-state listing of favorite supermarkets:

I’m not at all surprised by Costco being the favorite in Hawaii. They’ve turned their island locations into destinations for mainland club members. Not only are their gas prices the cheapest in the state, they also sell some of the best poke varieties, for a surprisingly reasonable price. It’s also a great place to purchase island-themed gifts like boxes of chocolate-covered macadamia nuts, or bags of Kona coffee. Costco gets an A+ for merchandising to fit the market.
Also, having spent 8 years in Arizona, I’m thrilled to see Sprouts come out on top. It takes real differentiation for me to miss a retailer. Alas…

MNB reader Steve Burbridge chimed in:

As a resident of the smallest state (Rhode Island), I can tell you that Whole Foods is NOT the most popular (they have 3 locations in the state I believe).  We have a local grocer called "Dave's" that has 10 locations and is known for their fresh produce and meats, prepared meals, pizza (prepared on-site in their own ovens), hot food and soup bars, etc.  Above all, they have some of the best staff working in their locations and are always willing to help you find something or point you towards the free coffee they offer.  I have never heard a bad word about Dave's.

Less expensive than Whole Foods, cleaner and nicer than Stop and Shop, and locally-owned.  If you are ever in the area, check out one of their stores.  You won't be disappointed.

We had a piece the other day about how more people are choosing to die at home, and reflected on whether this speaks to self-care trends in a broader way.

One MNB reader responded:

Last August, HBO provided an excellent documentary on dying in new different ways, sort of “Out of the box.” (sorry, bad pun).

It was called "Alternate Endings: Six new ways to die in America." It was very uplifting, considering death’s considerable weight on us as we age. It’s the Boomer generation again. We continue to disrupt and change conventions. Yeah for this one!

Go look for it, it’s worth watching.

And from another reader:

I lost my Mom (way too damn early) to cancer, but at least she died in her home, cared for lovingly by Hospice, surrounded by family.  Five years later the same happened to my Father-in-law; again, Hospice incredibly cared for him, and he died surrounded by family. 
Now I serve on a Hospice Board of Directors and my message to you all is, learn more about Hospice and spread the word.  These folks are absolute ANGELS ON EARTH, and care for your family as if they were their own.  We are all going to die, and lose loved ones, but with Hospice in the home, its as comfortable and loving, as it can be.

KC's View: