Independent Bookstores or the 1% Tax-dodging Superstore

We had two great events this last weekend. Friday night at Bird & Beckett, the hip neighborhood bookstore in the Glen Park area of San Francisco, Jonathan Clark with his grand basso voice read Kenneth Patchen poems to the walking bass of former SF Symphony bassist and jazz veteran Don Prell. And yesterday, at Readers” Books in Sonoma, Jonathan read with the fine jazz shakuhachi stylist Karl Young. As Jonathan noted, “This has to be the first time Patchen”s been performed online slots with shakuhachi.” At each event I found myself feeling really grateful to the small, iconoclastic bookstores, that against all odds, keep their stores open and gather their communities for free events. And yet for the sake of a few shekels, customers prefer buying their books at the 1% bookstore which offers no community.