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Saturday, June 17, 2017

Reality set in today

So I left The Bookstore this morning with my blood pressure going through the roof. A guy there really riled me up.

I had gone for my steel cut oatmeal and a few of us started talking while I was waiting for the oatmeal. We were talking about an investor or business person coming in at the last minute and saving the place. I was saying that I think the problem is the rent. It might be raised too high to accommodate a bookstore. 

Well, one guy there, who I have seen for years, but don't really know, I don't even know his name, was saying that it would be better to have offices there. It makes more sense for the owner of the Mayfair. I said that it would be nice if the owner of Mayfair gave a new owner concessions for The Bookstore as a community service. This guy eating breakfast disagreed. He then proceeded to ask why the place was so empty, was it the bad service or bad food? All said while he is there eating their food. I guess he neglected to realize it was 7:30 on a Saturday morning and even the most popular breakfast place in town, Greenstreets, has plenty of tables at that time on a Saturday.

By the way, The Bookstore has some of the best food in town, even though the service can be slow at times. The food and friendliness by the staff staff are worth the wait. Where else do they call you by name when you enter and know what you are ordering before you even order?

Then this guy proceeds to expound on how great all the new office buildings and boutique hotel are going to be and how great the wall of office buildings is going to be next to Greenstreets. When he started to say, "And I can't wait for them to knock down that old, decrepit . . . " I was holding my breath, waiting for him to say Coconut Grove Playhouse. But he didn't. He said, "CocoWalk." He is excited for the new office building at CocoWalk.

I thought I was on Candid Camera. Everything I stand for, he is was the against. And he was talking over me, which is hard to do. Everything I said, he said the opposite. It was all about having more money brought into the Grove, and his pocket. Never mind that we are being over-built. "It could be worse," was said. Out of the blue, he asked me if I was against the Home Depot being built 12 years ago. I didn't answer. I guess he was for it. I was against it. This guy was the Anti-Grovite.

When he started saying that I shouldn't care because it's all in the Center Grove, I had to remind him that my own North Grove neighborhood is under siege by developers. The others at breakfast kept their mouths shut, I think they were as shocked as I was. When the guy started mentioning how great it was for property values, I had heard enough. I grabbed my oatmeal and left. I don' think I ever met a Grove resident who was so pro-development before. Office development!

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unfortunately ideology is poisoning our society. Rationality, justice and perpetuity do not matter anymore. It is only about our team's success over the rest at any cost.

June 17, 2017 1:56 PM  
Blogger Liz Gibson said...

I know how you feel. I would have probably reacted much the same way. People like that are ruining the Grove

June 17, 2017 4:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The level of self righteousness amongst "Groveites" will never cease to amaze me. The anti-development crowd loves to act as if YOU were the first to move in. The conventional wisdom seems to be that YOU made The Grove perfect, and evetybody else is trying to crash the party. Really? What did The Grove look like 50 years ago? 75 years ago? 150 years ago?? But YOU all decided to move in at some point and obviously destroy what was once untouched land. Why is YOUR house, which was likely built in the 30's, 40's, 50's, etc.. appropriate.. while the development of today is considered obscene and intrusive? I could easily argue YOU ruined The Grove. Why did you have to build a bunch of single family homes and central district businesses, and ruin the natural beauty of what was once Cocoanut Grove? You complain about the destruction of the tree canopy.. well guess what was once growing where YOUR house now stands? Beautiful, glorious, native trees.. chopped down so YOU could have a home in Coconut Grove. Why do you think that YOU are entitled to decide what The Grove should be? I mean, criticizing someone for embracing the changes at CocoWalk? Most of you HATED CocoWalk when it was conceived and built. But your comments then surely echo those made about projects like the "mall on the water" now. Change is uncomfortable, and difficult. But it's also inevitable. Change has allowed you to live, work, and play in what was once an uninhabitable swampland. Raise your hand if you are opposed to Henry Flagler bringing rail service to South Florida. Embrace the changes, my friends.. and help The Grove to grow and prosper. For without growth, prosperity, and change.. there would not be a Coconut Grove for us to love, embrace, and call home.

June 17, 2017 10:09 PM  
Blogger James said...

Agree totally with the last post. Bravo.

June 18, 2017 1:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ruining the Grove has been going on for decades and then some. My great grandmother was a member of the Women's Club. It is simply change, growth, natural order of our world. Yes, much of it is slimy politicians and developers. They exist everywhere. The utopia of "stop ruining the Grove" that is dreamt of is actually stagnation. Move. Vote with your feet. Find a place that makes you happy and enjoy the time you have. Time is the one thing you can never replace.

June 18, 2017 1:08 PM  
Anonymous Manny Garcia said...

Why dont you get Books and Books to purchase the space and turn it into one of their locations. Books and Books a very homey, and would fit well in the Grove

June 18, 2017 11:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

First the artist settle in and then the investors home in on that homely environment. It takes many, many, many years, perhaps 20 or 30 and soon the property values and rents increase and there goes the artist and the culture. Now there's a movement for folks who enjoy the artist environment who have the capital to help the artist purchase the properties where they settle into so that this cycle is broken. Jobie Steppe

June 19, 2017 7:40 PM  
Blogger Save the Coconut Grove Playhouse said...

If I posted such disingenuous drek I'd be too ashamed to post my name too, and instead do it anonymously as you have. So according to you, because we step in dog shyte once we should continue to step in it? We can't tear down all the buildings built in the 30's and 40s but we can at least try to keep intact what made the grove popular to begin with instead of continue to kill it so a handful of greedy pig developers can take the money and run and leave the citizens, who have to live with their crap, deprived of any sense of history and meaning. This is Max Pearl, editor of Save the Coconut Grove Playhouse, and I approve this message.

June 20, 2017 10:57 AM  

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