Tag Archives: high school

A Big Bear and a Scottie Dog


Going through some old things I found my keys to my parents’ house in Worthington, and on the ring are two among the first keychain swipe cards I ever owned — a coffee club card for Scottie MacBean Roastery and Bakery and a Savings Club Wild Card for Big Bear, which was once one the larger supermarket chains in the area. If you lived in Columbus you undoubtedly remember the latter and the former is likely to ring a bell.

Kids outside of Scottie MacBean's courtesy of Robert Zimmerman.

Kids outside of Scottie MacBean’s courtesy of Robert Zimmerman.

Scottie’s, as it was fondly known by locals, was a Scottish terrier-themed (remember that trend?) coffee shop located on N. High Street in Olde Worthington, just a short walk from Thomas Worthington High School, which, often to the dismay of the owners, made it a prime hangout spot for droves of teenagers who would scrounge together a dollar a piece for a bottomless cup of coffee and then hang out for hours drinking mug after mug of Highlander Grogg. In the early 2000s the business changed management and the name officially changed to Scottie’s Coffee and Tea House. After a few different iterations, the coffee shop closed for good a couple years ago, but it will certainly live on in the memories of many area residents, and a great many former Worthington Schools students from the 90s.

Big Bear went out of business in 2004. Some of their locations were taken over by Pittsburgh-based Giant Eagle, including the Clintonville store on N. High Street where I used to shop in my early twenties. My sister and her husband, musicians in Columbus, wrote a song about the chain’s demise entitled “Giant Eagle Ate the Big Bear.” If you’d like to hear it your best bet is probably to request a live rendition at one of their shows, but you can try sending their band, The Dag Nammits, a Facebook message and maybe they’ll record it one day!


Docs: Still Alive and Kicking

For my 15th birthday my dad took me to Avalon on N Nigh St. to pick out a pair of Doc Martens. Remarkably, I still have them, and while they are certainly well-worn, they’re in damn good shape for being 18 years old and I do still wear them occasionally. For $150, that’s less than $10/a year, which is a pretty amazing value.


My UK-made Doc Martens that I’ve had since 1997, still in one piece in 2015.

The brand never went away like so many other trendy 90s fashion manufacturers (undoubtedly in part because they really are practical, high quality shoes) but they’ve recently seen a surge in popularity.

When I think about my high school clothing purchases, the items I would consider buying again in my thirties are few and far between, but I can see some durable, slip-resistant black boots fitting into my current wardrobe. The made-in-China or Thailand version are actually cheaper today than they were when I got my original pair, though these are reputed to be less durable. You can also still purchase the UK-made boot in the same style for $240, which US Inflation Calculator tells me is half what my original boots would cost today. Wow. Thanks, Dad!


At my teenage kinderwhore best in thrift store lingerie, white lace bloomers that I probably bought someplace on campus, fishnets, and my Docs, circa 1999.

If I could remember what brand of nail polish I used to paint on them, I’d have to give its longevity a shout out, too!


In December dELiA*s filed for bankruptcy, but what would 90s revival be without the quintessential teen girls’ alternative clothing company? Last month the brand announced it will relaunch this August under new ownership!

delias jacket 1

Perched on a rock wearing my Delia’s bomber jacket with men’s work pants from Volunteers of America.

As a teenager I loved getting their catalogs in the mail and I (and my little sister AND my high school boyfriend) wore my green corduroy bomber jacket (possibly the only item I ever actually purchased from dELiA*s) until the trim was matted and brown.

The first week I wore it to school one of my classmates was incensed because she had planned to order the same jacket and now she couldn’t!


Cameron wearing my Delia’s jacket while drawing pictures with my sister 




Hanging out at Dublin AMC movie theatre in my Delia’s jacket and a striped sweater from Volunteers of America.

Even though I didn’t spend much money with them (I got most of my clothes at various Volunteers of America thrift stores), I spent hours flipping through the pages of the catalogs, admiring the models’ grungy thrift store chic style. I must have cut out hundreds of images of girls in slip dresses, baby barrettes, pastel nail polish, and Mary Janes for collages.