I live in the idyllic setting of northern New England, where crystal clear bodies of water and serpentine rivers rest beneath snow-capped mountain peaks and dense forests.  This setting, of course, brings all kinds of tourists to the area, and the particular region in which I reside enjoys a certain year-round tourist appeal – skiing in the winter; hiking, boating, etc. in the spring and summer; leaf peeping in the fall.  But the one tourist-driven activity that seems to dominate all others is shopping – shop ’til you freakin’ drop!  In neighboring New Hampshire, where there is no sales tax, villages swell with the sprawl of outlet stores, strip malls, five and dimes, T-shirt emporiums, and all other assortment of purveyors of “stuff”.

While driving through one such town in New Hampshire recently, I was struck by the existence of a store called Mattress Giant.  I find it astounding that there is enough of a mattress market that there are stores all over this country – including in rural New Hampshire – that are open for hours each day, selling mattresses. Who are these people who are going out in droves each day and buying mattresses?  Of all things!  Are people really wearing out their old mattresses quickly enough and in enough numbers that would warrant an entire chain of stores called MATTRESS GIANT?

Is it just me, or this is just plain weird?