Between working in TV news and working in non-news video, I paid the bills (mostly) for a year by working at Brookstone. Remember Brookstone? The memory foam mattress you could lie down on (ew) and weird flashlights and a massage chair anyone could hop into? The company now seems to just live in airports, but once, it was a magical place where shoppers could kill ten minutes until Mom came out of Burdine’s.
That’s “my” store in the photo – Mall at Millenia in Orlando, FL. It’s a Lily Pulitzer now.
My Brookstone year started as a Christmas gig, shuffling boxes in the tiny back room. Eventually, I got to put on the denim apron and work the floor. It was a very hands-on store, so just about anything a customer could pick up would end up in the opposite corner from where it started. I remember these tiny sealed glass bubble aquariums that were in equilibrium until a sticky-fingered kid would shake it like a snowglobe and rattle all the brine shrimp (aka generic Sea Monkeys) inside.