That’s not what they call it, but that’s really what it is. The sign says “Stereo Discount,” but the shop is full of all kinds of old-fashioned electronic equipment. Speakers, amplifiers, turntables, tape players including reel-to-reel. Big stereo consoles. It’s also got a some wonderful old toys, some humorous and entertaining paintings, an interesting variety of musical instruments from bongos to electric guitars. There was no doubt more, but I was afraid to look.

I wanted the big silver disco ball on the ceiling. I was afraid to ask the price. What would I do if it was inexpensive? I’d have to buy it! Where in the world could I put a basketball-size disco ball? Too big for anyplace but the living room, but we don’t have the ceiling height to support it. Owen’s tall. He’d have to duck.

Despite not buying anything (my son was bringing in a tape deck for repair), I enjoyed the place. Every shelf had something unique, something I’d never seen before.

There used to be places like that all over Boston and most small towns. Now, I don’t think there are any places like that left in Boston and although we had a couple of little shops like that here, the rents here went sky-high too. Real estate prices got so jacked up, no one but a wealthy shop could afford the rent. Those cool little boutiques that gave places like Charles Street its charm as well as the last remaining bookstores gave up and closed. I hope they moved somewhere else. They were the fun part going into Boston. Now, wherever you look it’s just chain stores. Some very upgrade chains, but nonetheless, the unique and fun stuff has left town.

Of course, who knows what will happen now with so many places shut down? Maybe they will consider lowering rents. That would be a first!

If you live in the area, you can find the shop in East Providence, Rhode Island.

279 Taunton Avenue
East Providence, RI 02914
Tel: (401) 521-0022

Categories: Arts, collections, Photography, Technology, Video

Tags: , , , , , ,

14 replies

  1. I hate stores like this.., why? Because they love me. I’m glad I don’t live anywhere near Providence. The downside is that there is a similar joint out here. The difference is, he really doesn’t want to sell any pieces from his massive collection, so you have to work real hard to get him to give any of it up. If the plan works, he may sell you something you’ve pleaded to have, or you just get too tired to bully him and leave to catch your breath.., maybe regroup for another assault? Upon looking back you may be relieved that he didn’t give in, saving you a serious case of “buyers remorse.” I dunno, that disco ball looks mighty inviting.., I’m just sayin’?

    Seems his wife got tired of his frequent GAS attacks and asked him to get rid of it, or move the stuff out of the house? So he rented space in an industrial park.


    • This is actually a business. Owen did some swapping with him because HE had a bunch of stuff he had been intending to sell, but the bottom feel out of the market. This house is already cluttered enough. I’m proud to at least have kept my mouth shut because one word from me, and something or other (disco ball?) would have come home with us. He had a couple of tape decks and Owen ran screaming saying “NOOOOO not even for free!” I think we both feel that enough is enough!


  2. Shops like these are so much more fun than the chain stores. We are lucky to have a second hand shop in Wynyard where we have become frequent visitors and occasional shoppers. We’ve been looking everywhere for a set of microwave safe every day china. The modern stuff is so ugly, boring colours and usually heavy stoneware. We bought a set of cups and saucers, plates and bowls in the secondhand shop that should be perfect for our needs.


    • I was really saddened that the last of our second-hand shops vanished during lockdown. It has been so long since we felt safe to go outside or shop unless it was for food of medications. I used to love looking through the stuff at the Salvation Army or Marie’s which was up on Main Street. There were a couple of others, but they are all gone. I’m hoping something new will emerge.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hope so. All our local Op Shops have reopened and I think that people need them more than ever although the national charities like the Salvos are getting expensive to shop at. The store we go to in Wynyard for collectables and household goods is a for profit and crammed full of stuff. They seem to be doing OK.


  3. I love a ‘proper’ shop, that sells just about anything git chooses…and there are so few of them left these days…


    • Almost none. Rents got so high — everywhere, even here where a lot of shops are EMPTY — that these stores just gave up. I’ve gotten some of the most fun stuff in these places. “Barn stores” in Connecticut. We used to have a few used clothing and other stuff places here, but they all went out of business when the lockdown came. There aren’t any left in Boston, though now that so many shops have gone empty, maybe they’ll reconsider rents. One can hope. Our Salvation Army was the best shop in town. I remember the day I met the bank manager shopping there. It closed, too. I think they had a very slim profit margin anyway and with no traffic, they were gone in just a couple of weeks. I doubt they’ll be back. Those were fun stores — especially used book stores! They were the BEST.


      • We have an awful lotod charity shops in the towns these days, where there are still small shops. They are very much a part of the culture here now,selling donated goods to raise funds for the charities.They too can be fun shops to frequent and some of them have donated furniture stores and second-hand book shops.


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