Remember those Saturday afternoons. Meeting up with your friends in town. Going to the cinema and stopping off on the way to get some cheap pick n mix and cherry Panda pops? Yep, I'm talking about Woolworths. Ah the good old days. Peter Andre's mysterious girl was selling for 99p. You could buy a ghetto blaster for 9.99 that would break 4 months later. And purchase phone top up cards that made us teenagers feel like proper grown-ups.
I remember going in and seeing all the chavvy boys from school shop lift the fake tattoos and all the girls would be eyeing up the Take That posters before buying or shoplifting some new Groovy Chic stationary. (I know you are smiling at the memories right now)
I on the other hand, would be found up on the fourth floor working there every Saturday. Dressed in a turquoise oversized shirt and a knee length navy blue skirt that felt like carpet rolled up around me.
And of all the departments to place me in - The kids section. Whining, moaning and snotty noses. And that was just the parents. Spoilt kids grizzling and begging for the latest Tamagochi or a Polly pocket. Over tired babies screaming in their prams. I remember taking some of my mum's ear plugs to drown out the noise, while I managed to break people's bank cards or get told off for eating on the shop floor.
I think the main thing I can't get my head around, is that if Woolworths can go bust, how the HELL is Jane Normal still going? Who buys that tat that looks it came from Kat and Bianca market? The only person in this world I can think of who could still go there to spend enough for Jane Norman to keep going is Tulisa. (That one time X- factor judge who could wear a Oscar De La Renta dress and still manage to make it look cheap) MEEEOOOOW. But true.
I did a gig last night and I asked some comedians what they missed most about Woolworths and why THEY thought it had vanished from our high street. They all said the same two words to me - pick n mix and shoplifting. Even shoplifting the pick n mix! The Candy King himself got given the five finger discount!
I was only fifteen years old when I worked in Woolies and I took things for granted, including Woolies! It was just one of those places that was always there when you needed something! If someone had told me Woolworths would be as extinct as the Dodo I wouldn't have believed it. Just like if someone had told me in fifteen years' time I'd be doing stand-up comedy.
So, now we are left to spend £547 on sweets at the cinema. Secretly listen to Mysterious Girl on YouTube and pop to Primark to pick up England football themed curtains.
But where do we get our giant Toblarons, our trashy magazines and 2015 diarys? Oh yeah - W.H Smith.