I have become a little more lenient, however, when it comes to shopping at the Big Box stores vs locally-owned business. It might cost us a dollar or two more, but I'm becoming more convicted that we need to support those mom and pop stores.
2- N.L. MVP's (1982, 1983)
4- Silver Slugger Awards (1982-1985)
5- Gold Glove Awards (1982-1986)
When it comes to hardware stores, I still prefer to shop at the local True Value store over Home Depot or Lowe's. For one, it's really the only place in town- and I'd rather shop here than drive to the next city. And second, True Value is actually a co-op of independent store owners (as is Ace), so I am still supporting a locally-owned business.
And now to get up on my soapbox...
Let's not forget to mention that, sadly, our hobby seems to be going the way of mom and pop stores. First it was the oddball cards that all but disappeared (until recently, that is- talking Marketside Pizza) and now it appears that Topps may be on their way to eliminating the middle-man.
I have a problem with this type of move because:
a) Topps is supposedly going to be charging more than what the cost would have been previously- thus, the consumer is paying more.
b) I think it's safe to say that many of those distributors are family-run businesses.