The weather outside has been frightful, but I have been hankering to go down to Greenwich Village ever since viewing the PBS American Masters documentary on Jeff Bridges a week ago.
I hadn’t heard of it previously, but the show has a segment of Mr. Bridges going to a store on Thompson Street called “The Little Lebowski”. It’s a tiny store that’s more or less all merchandise pertaining to the Coen Brothers’ movie “The Big Lebowski”.
I couldn’t wait to go see it for myself!
Recently, the weather was nice enough to venture out. Here’s the window of the store:
And here’s a view of the inside of the store:
This store is awesome! It’s tiny, and whichever way you turn there’s something else wonderful to see. The owner couldn’t have been nicer. We talked for quite a long time – he asked me how I heard of the store and I mentioned the documentary. He told me how the producers of the show had wandered in, and then they had the idea to include the store in their show. When Jeff Bridges and his wife were in town for an event, the producers called up the owner and asked if they could come in a do some filming within the store – and next thing he knew, in walks Jeff Bridges, his wife and the camera crew! They were there quite a while, and he said that Mr. Bridges couldn’t have been nicer.
There’s a YouTube clip you can watch here – about 3 minutes which includes part of the store and the owner meeting Jeff.
I asked the owner (who works every day in his bathrobe and shades, just like The Dude) if I could take his picture, and he obliged:
A terrific guy with a terrific story.
He said that he opened the store just before the recession hit. He was trying to sell children’s books, comics, etc., and just couldn’t sell enough to make ends meet. He was finally about 2 weeks from being evicted, and he said to himself, “Self – why not have fun for the last couple of weeks?” So, he filed the store with the Lebowski merchandise that he had, put on the bathrobe, and started selling!
Now, after being mentioned in the documentary, he’s getting calls and emails from around the world.
Finally, a story about this recession with a happy ending.
Check out the store’s website and buy a tee shirt.
And, when you’re in New York City, pay this store a visit, and meet The Dude!