Ah, it's just as well. I don't really "shop" anymore. I'm more of what you would call a vicarious consumer than an actual consumer. It's just so much funner and cheaper to sit back and make remarks about what others buy. I'm here for you, though. In this as in all things I keep track of the trends, people. I am prepared to advise.
One thing Hub and I still do shop for is books. Real books, too, not those encoded pieces of data you plug an earbud into or upload onto a little robotic LCD ersatz book doppelganger. Nuh uhn.
One thing we've noticed lately in a lot of bookstores is an increase in what we call bibliofluvia. You know, all that non-book crap crammed around the checkouts in about (now) the front 1/3 of any bookstore (probably sold to try and raise the store income since no one but us buys real books anymore). I'm talking your decorative bookends shaped like a stack of brass books, your coffee mug shaped like a stack of books, a phony stack of books that's really a hollow ceramic cache holder where you can hide your...what, pot? Keys to your safe? Look, I'm no criminal, but I know enough about this bibliofluvia crap to tell you that if I'm coming to your house to steal your pot or the keys to your safe, that fake ceramic stack of books is the first place I'm gonna look. Just don't buy it.
Years ago when Hub worked in a Christian bookstore as a student, the staff snickered over the holy roller version of bibliofluvia there which they called holy hardware. This would be your basic "Jesus Loves" superballs, rolls of tasty "Testa-Mints," Holy Ghostbusters joke books for Grandpa, Footprints in the Sand pedicure sets. That sort of thing.
Let's just sum up to say, there is less and less of the book in bookstore. And should you be concerned? I'm going to advise, yes. Cuz even if you just love having your Kindle in your labcoat pocket for a quick read while your patient is coming out of anesthesia or whatever, or you just adore your ceramic fake book stack for hiding your Testa-Mints from the kids, there will come a day, my friend. We will walk into the hollow vacant "book spa" of the future and be implanted with the one and only "chip of the canon," and like all canons of literature, the dead rich old white dudes who chose it might not like what you like.
It could be Pynchon, Joyce and Clancy until the end of time. And if you think you need pot now, just wait until then.