I never considered “change” to be my friend, exactly, but I was unafraid of it. Back when, I was more in touch with how change is followed by more change and I was ready for that. Maybe because I’m aware that my ability to move through cycles of change is getting closer to its limit, I’m notably more upset by changes to anything I like. The only business-zone transformation that pissed me off was the ruination of Harvard Square, described perfectly in this 15-year-old article. The Harvard Coop housed the first record store where I could buy any title I heard about and every punk-single import imaginable. The “Pro” was as much a school for teaching young gulpers how to appreciate wine as it was a liquor store. (One of the last employees happened to be able to turn out excellent “Simpsons” cartoons– my favorite came near the end, when he presented Mr. Burns tapping his fingers together and saying: “They’re going to close the ‘Pro’? Release the hounds!”)
Harvard Square was worth getting upset about — it was the downfall of a unique, sophisticated playground. But today I found out a simple retail outlet had changed hands this summer and a wave of sadness hit me. This really is fear of change itself. And I cannot avoid dwelling on the fact that good things do go away, period — who could possibly imagine in the ’70s that you couldn’t buy an authentic bagel in Boston, Cambridge or Brookline? But hey, I can fight back. For years, one of the outrages was that there was no good place to hear music in Harvard Square (which had been the site of the first House of Blues fer Sachmo’s sake). But the Sinclair recently gave the Square an ideal ultra-modern venue. Let more good times return.