As a relatively small, anxious human, I am normally very uncomfortable with the word “mob”.  I immediately picture villagers with pitchforks, trashcans on fire, and bloated, greasy-haired wiseguys in pinstripe suits.  But what if there was something that could transform the negative connotation of “mob” into something far more optimistic, and perhaps even beneficial?

Help save your cherished local businesses by creating a “cash mob“!  These happenings are commerce-oriented versions of flash mobs, where participants use social media to arrive at an agreed upon small businesses at a specific time and make a minimum $10 purchase.  By spending money at a local establishment, cash mobs hope to provide a little economic stimulus and generate some publicity around the kind of independently owned shops that make our downtown so unique.

San Luis Obispo’s resident cash mob committee has chosen Phoenix Bookstore (990, Monterey St.) as the site for their next event.  On Monday, May 7, at 6pm, come browse the shelves for a favorite gently-used read and show your love for a town institution.

Any ideas for the next cash mob?  Who would you like to see pleasantly surprised?

(Photo Source: Joe Johnston, The Tribune, Tuesday, May 8, 2012 )