Tuesday, August 15, 2006

99 Pennies for your Thoughts

Mr. Big can't be the only other little person who considers a trip to the local 99 Cents Only store to be nothing short of nirvana. These stores started in Los Angeles, so I've been going to them for a while now. The ones in L.A. are more of a mob scene and tend to be populated by Eastern European bargain seekers. There are items I used to buy at expensive drug stores (toilet bowl cleaner, scouring pads, gift bags, etc) that I will only buy at the 99 cents store. The savings is significant. Plus, their stores have cheap items that you would never think about buying otherwise -- we just got an Our Lady of Guadalupe beach bag there. I've also found educational children's videos (like HBO's Harold and the Purple Crayon) and music for children (you know how expensive that is elsewhere). Who can resist these off the wall goodies when they're all only 99 cents. Especially when we're penny pitching as we are now, going to the 99 cents store makes me feel like a million bucks.

Here's a blurb from the Los Angeles Business Journal:

"David Gold, founder and chief executive of 99 Cents Only Stores Inc., has a reputation as a penny pincher. Gold, whose family fortune is estimated at $650 million, drives a Toyota, refuses to pay a public relations firm to promote his business, draws a moderate $181,000 annual salary and calls himself "overpaid."

So perhaps it's not surprising to see the signs that have been affixed to the back of the 99 Cents Only Stores trucks to warn-away would-be robbers: They say, "Driver carries only 99 cents."

And here's a longer item from Forbes:

Let's face it, most kid's toys are cheap throw aways. The 99 cents stores pull no punches. They know they're selling junk and they price it accordingly. Plus it gives us parents a chance to teach our kids the value of a dollar, minus a penny that is.

Pomona has two 99 cents only stores, one at the corner of Arrow and Towne, and one at Holt and San Antonio. Montclair has one next to the Central Avenue Target. And yes, that was Mr. Big and I standing in line at the grand opening for the one on Arrow last summer. I was the one in a hat and dark sunglasses, hoping no one I knew drove by and saw me waiting in line to get in the store like it was a Stones concert. But hey, they were giving away some items for a penny.


Ontario Emperor said...

There's a shopping center that has a 99 Cents Only Store and a Big Lots right next to each other.

And it's in Chino Hills. Go figure.

Goddess of Pomona said...

That's what we call a bargain lover's paradise. There's also a fabric store in that same center, which is not a jo ann's (which seem to be the only show in town these days and which can be kind of limited). I think it's called CAlico Fabrics.