Many were shocked when they walked by Jimmie’s Chicken Shack and saw the windows boarded up and a dirty ‘SOLD’ sign slapped on it. The few employees that worked there were just as shocked – coming to the Observer for answers. After many calls, the previous owner finally agreed to a phone interview, though it still left many questions unanswered like who it was sold to, for how much, and would he be opening up in another location.
“Were people really that surprised? How many times did they walk past the place without ever going in? The place was costing me – wasn’t even breaking even anymore….And keeping the staff working there was [expletive] impossible.”
The owner did admit he felt bad for not informing his employees ahead of time, but after finding more and more of a mess from lack of cleaning – the offer from this ‘anonymous’ buyer was apparently a Godsend, and the buyer only gave him 24 hours to decide. Why the secrecy though? Former Jimmie’s owner thinks this buyer just might be buying up more around town than just the shack. It’s a scary thought – how many more jobs will be lost?
“Most of them are decent kids that worked there – they’ll find a job elsewhere. Was only paying them minimum wage anyways”
Minimum wage, though, is a lot more than many are being paid in Hathian, where small businesses seem to come to die. Jimmie’s hits a little closer to home though – many remember the Chicken Shack from even before Katrina washed much of the city away. Perhaps its time for small businesses to unite again.