Mikearoni & Plano:
I had a good ranting and raving post on the inadequacies of local business to compete with international chains, but Blogger didn't recognize a character and erased the whole thing. So here's my complaint in a nutshell:
1. You can buy coolness at Starbucks, but local coffee shops force you to grow it. My soil doesn't have the right nutrients to grow coolness, so I'll stick to buying grande mocha frappuccini instead of "medium gelati."
2. You just can't beat a 64-cent ice cream cone from McDonald's. 64 cents + fat free + a freakin ice cream cone = pure delight.
Superior products. Better service. Lower prices. That's why small businesses go out of business.