I had the most depressing news the other day. Nothing earth-shattering. But maybe some of you will get me when I say that I was shocked when I heard that Kwirkworld in Riverpark is closing down shop soon.
A few years ago, I took a job at a paper in San Luis Obispo right out of college. In the beginning, I had no friends, and I was the one person on the planet who hated SLO and missed Fresno. Maybe that’s why I felt strangely at home at this weird little place called Kwirkworld in downtown SLO. The owner was from Fresno, and his collection of gag gifts, accessories, housewares and office supplies was definitely quirky. They would make me laugh and distract me. I’d buy stuff to decorate my office, my new apartment, to give to friends back home.
Kwirkworld was cute. Kwirkworld was crude. Kwirkworld was silly. Kwirkworld was a lot of things. By the time I came home, Kwirkworld had embraced its owner’s roots, opening a store in Riverpark a few years ago. I remember being ecstatic because it was twice the size of the SLO store.
I can’t even tell you the number of things I’ve bought over the years, including a sushi stapler, a sushi shower curtain, a giant wine glass, Sarah Palin toilet paper (it was for a white elephant gift, OK?! Haha!) and even, of all things, a steampunk Sesame Street t-shirt.
Now, unfortunately, Kwirkworld is about to go away, and I’m probably irrationally sad about it. A friend and I went as soon as we heard, and when they asked how we were doing, my friend said, “I”m mad!” The clerk replied, “Think how we feel!” Touche, I guess!
According to The Fresno Bee, Kwirkworld is closing not because the Fresno store wasn’t doing well, but because it was weighed down by the Folsom store, which closed recently. The SLO store closed last year. Owner Kirk Psenner has decided to go back to his first love, real estate.
I suppose it’s not quite time for complete despair yet. The silver lining is that all of the stuff from the Folsom store has been moved to Fresno, and everything is being sold at 50% off until the store closes sometime next month. I picked up a crab claw pen for when my co-workers annoy me. Because literally where else am I going to get something like that?!
My friend Jennifer bought some stuff from one of her favorite shows, Doctor Who, and also summed up my feelings perfectly. “I mean, I could go to Hot Topic,” she told me. “But that means I have to go to Hot Topic.”
So Kwirkworld, thank you for keeping us from having to go to Hot Topic all of these years. Thank you for all the laughs and weird tchotkes. I hope you all will take the opportunity to go check out Kwirkworld one last time in this next month. And for the love of everything, if any of you can think of a local store that comes close to Kwirkworld, please let me know.
I really don’t want to go to Hot Topic…
This Week In Baseball
There’s a special event for all you Giants fans out there! The 2010, 2012 and 2014 World Series trophies will all be visiting Chukchansi Park for a fan photo opportunity. The general public will be able to view the trophies on this Tuesday from 5-7 p.m. There is no charge, but a $2 donation to support the Junior Giants is suggested. Season ticket holders are being invited to a special VIP session from 3-5 p.m.
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