September 11, 2007
WHAT'S IN A NAME ?
Chicagoans in general have a dislike of New York City and being called the Second City. So when mega-Macy's took over the beloved Chicago Department Store Marshall Field's last year many protests were heard. As a matter of fact, much to my astonishment, four protests have been organized since then.
Taking over Field's is one thing, but putting the name Macy's on this Chicago icon ? That didn't sit well with many people who swore never to enter the store. The Field's name has stood for service an quality for over a century and a half . "Give the lady what she wants " was Marshall Field's motto. Marshall Field's was more than just a department store, it was a destination for many families to celebrate at Christmas and other special occasions. It was an integral part of the Chicago landscape.
The one year anniversary of the takeover was September 9 and no one expected anymore protests but a grassroots group called Field's Fans Chicago was organized and is protesting and calling for the return of the Field's name on that day in front of the famous Clock on State Street. I visited their website and was amazed at their determination to have the Field's name restored. They pointed out that customers demanded the old coke back when new coke was introduced, Chrysler divorced itself from Daimler, etc. and that Macy's should recognize its action as a major corporate blunder.
I asked my sister who works at Field's, now Macy's, about how business was going since the takeover and she said it was way down. I read that last month Macy's posted a 77 percent decline in second-quarter profits. Fieldsfanschicago is encouraging Chicagoans not to shop at Macy's or Bloomingdale's . I wonder if this was one of the causes for the sales slump.
What is Macy's reaction ? They plan to hire Donald Trump and Jessica Simpson for national ads starting this Fall. Not two of my faves. Everytime I see The Donald I want to get my scissors out and give him a free hair cut and Jessica, well I think she needs to be a more positive role models for our young'uns.
What's in a name ? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet ? Not this time and place. A lot of Chicagoans I know won't even step foot in the former Field's.
Good luck to the die hard fieldsfanschicago.