Monday, September 13, 2010

More Godzilla dustballs.

Halfway there.

Had the whole crew at the store to move the big fixtures downstairs. This part of the process always makes me nervous, because things rarely go according to plan, and if something goes awry, it's goes awry in a big way. Plus, I don't want any of my employees hurt.

I always make a big talk about going slow, not trying to lift too much. I tell the crew about my double hernia operation. But I know, once we get started, it will be almost impossible for red-blooded American males to admit they need a rest, or that it's too heavy, or that they are feeling a strain.

Went as smooth as could be, got it done in less than half an hour.

We went Egyptian style moving on the biggest rack -- using cardboard skids. (Egyptians had cardboard? asked Cameron.)

I was deep in thought, and thought I heard Jasper say something to me. I didn't answer but just stared blankly at him, and then heard him say, "he's gone...."

Well, I did warn them. I joked that if I don't like how it looks, we'd be hauling everything back. Worse than the proverbial New Yorker cartoon housewife, I am. "I want it there --- no, there -- no, put it back where it was...."

I had to make a couple of small changes to my plans, but nothing major. I never can quite situate inventory where it makes the most sense -- I have to situate inventory where it will fit.
Still in the jigsaw puzzle phase -- and won't really be able to complete the look until the other half is done.

Sometimes, there's a nice surprise. I consolidated all my Star Wars books into one of the bookcases; and I realized that the 18"s that I had left over were EXACTLY the same size as the Star Wars toys spin rack, and they fit snugly next to each other. BONUS!

I still have to construct the 5 larger bookcases (or rather, have Matt do it) and then I'll need to move all the manga to the back wall. Then I have to pull the green bookcases up to the front of the row, and move the toy spin racks and t-shirt rack to the back. I have to move the remaining card rack four inches to the right -- which will take most of a morning. (Four freakin' inches...)

I have to transplant the posters from the two racks, to the one new rack (or rather, I asked Jasper to do that today.)

Then I need to move all five of the big bookcases against the wall, transfer the designer toys to two of them. Move the two small bookcases to their pre-chosen spots, and so on.

Only then can I really begin to move the inventory around.

I'm hoping that a friend well come by to pick up my desk. I decided that with my laptop, the whole big desk isn't really necessary. I'll can just use the counter top.

Anyway, the whole process is kind of uplifting. It makes me feel rejuvenated. I just like doing this sort of thing -- I mean, I dread the actual process, and I'm not crazy about all the hard work, but I enjoy the planning and the results.

I don't know if it will help sales, but I know it was time to make a change. Stuff needed to be retired or moved; and in the process, a lot of cleaning and straightening goes on. Godzilla dustballs.

I need to withhold judgment until it's actually finished -- things can look pretty bad halfway through, and then miraculously come together at the end. (Which seems to be true of many creative endeavors.) It can look either like less of a change than I expected, or more of a change -- and sometimes, in some strange way, both. It needs to gain -- to earn -- a 'lived in' look. At first, the inventory will look out of place.

If it niggles at me long enough, I know I need to move things around until it stops niggling at me. (That isn't the N word, folks.)

So the next big moving day is Tuesday, and by the end of that day, I should have the basic framework in place. Then another week or so of situating the inventory -- and another month or so, of moving stuff around until I feel comfortable.

I should gain the equivalent of at least seven large bookcases, plus the two green shelves that are probably the equivalent of another 3 bookcases in linear feet. My guesstimate is about 140 more linear feet of shelves. About half of that new space is due to better organizing and consolidation, and about half is due to retiring dead product.

Strangely, despite the new shelves, it should free up some floor space and make everything look a little cleaner and streamlined. Subtraction by addition, I call it.

I'm going to try not to fill all the shelves at once, but use them to more properly display what I already have -- well, at least half that space. This is the real battle. I always want to order more stuff, but I'm not the sure the flooring will stand it much longer....

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