"It's a strange way to live," Tefft says.
The location put Chop Suey amid a constant flow of students who might come in looking for copies of English 101 classics (none of which Tefft says he ever remembers to order), but finding instead books on bondage photography, say, or a whole section on the Beat Generation. Plus there are the events gallery openings, author appearances and strange reasons to stay up all night that give the independent bookstore its charm, and often make its survival a gamble.
After three years, Tefft is opening a second location in a more aggressive retail environment Carytown, which saw the relocation of Carytown Books to the North Side a year ago.
Due to open in late October, the new store, Chop Suey Tuey (the spelling of which is still questionable) is moving into the space formerly occupied by Zohar's at 2913 W. Cary St., across from the Byrd Theatre.
"It's condensed Chop Suey," Tefft says, with more of a focus on art and literature, magazines and gifts. There will be events, too, but on a smaller scale, says Tefft, even now building shelves and painting the new location.
"We're working from the floor up," he says. Shouldn't be too much harder than cleaning paint off a frat-house wall. SClick here for more News and Features