The Demise of Small Business.

By Peter Hewitt—

The scene is Pete’s Diner in Centertown, Ohio, population 7,000. Pete is behind the counter chatting with Chuck Barrows who is sipping a cup of coffee. Chuck, age about 45, has just been laid off by Happy Hockey Pucks, a small manufacturer in town.

“What’s going on at Happy’s?” asks Pete.

They’re closing,” responds Chuck, “bought by Super Sporting Goods. All manufacturing in Chicago.”

“You heard about Rock’s Hardware?” asks Chuck.

“Don’t tell me they’re closing,” responds Pete.

“No, but they’ve been bought out by Great Hardware. Headquarters in St. Louis. Just clerks here.”

In order to keep the conversation going, Pete asks Chuck, “Have you heard that Sal’s Super Stores is building on Route 10?”

Chuck observes, “Well there goes Martino’s Market.”

Pete, now sounding quite gloomy, mentions that McDaniels’, a nationwide restaurant chain, has just bought the lot across the street from the diner.

“Maybe you could make your diner into a museum,” replies Chuck, not feeling very funny.


Peter Hewitt is a former resident of Dublin who retired to RiverMead along with several other Dublin residents.

Peter’s Pondering