In what easily signifies the end of an era, Radio Shack has announced that they are filing for bankruptcy and shuttering the majority of their stores (franchise locations can keep operating, if they want to).
This hardly comes as a surprise... I haven't stepped foot in one of their stores for well over a decade.
But back in the 80's and 90's?
Radio Shack was like dreamland for a tech geek like me.
I built many an electronic project with Radio Shack parts. I bought every wire... every battery... every blank cassette tape from Radio Shack. I was an Atari computer fan and ignored their TSR-80 PC, but all my floppy disks and cables came from Radio Shack. My first mobile phone, the Motorola StarTAC, was purchased at Radio Shack.
But then geek culture shifted, and Radio Shack became less and less relevant.
They tried to reinvent themselves not so long ago, but it never really took hold... despite the awesome, awesome commercial they came up with to promote their new focus on mobile phone and finished electronic goods...
Yeah. Not difficult to see why that didn't work out.
"The Shack" was an important part of my life for a dozen years or so. Now that it's gone, I feel as though an entire culture I loved is gone as well.
I feel as though I need to go solder something.
Which is no problem... I still have my Radio Shack soldering iron along with a spool of Radio Shack solder sitting in a drawer somewhere.