Our Best Stuff From the Week We Didn’t Fix the Debt Ceiling

President Joe Biden meets with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy in the Oval Office on Monday. (Photo by Demetrius Freeman/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Hello and happy Saturday. While I hope everyone takes advantage of the long weekend to enjoy good weather and time with family and friends as we unofficially kick off summer, I also hope everyone can take a moment to remember that Memorial Day commemorates those who gave their lives so we can enjoy the freedoms we have. 

As an adult, I’ve always been grateful that I had a classic, quintessentially American, small-town childhood. (I say “as an adult” because as a kid, I could not wait to get the heck out of dodge.) I walked to school, played outside or swam at the pool all summer, and cruised the main drag with my friends when we were old enough to drive. Imagine a cross between a Norman Rockwell painting and a Brat Pack movie set in the Rust Belt.

I lost a part of that childhood this week. On Monday, my parents texted me a photo someone had sent them of a lonely little shed, surrounded by some debris and a few dumpsters. It’s all that’s left of the grocery store they owned and operated for a little over 20 years in Alliance, Ohio. They’d sold the business and the property in late 2002, so it’s been out of the family for about as long as it was ours, but it occupies an outsize place in my memories of growing up. 

Brandons’ Hillcrest Market was, both figuratively and literally, a mom-and-pop outfit. My dad was a meat cutter, my mom managed the clerks and sometimes helped out in the bakery. And there was a lot they did together. We had the best ground beef, steaks and pies in town, we delivered groceries long before Amazon—or before that, Webvan—and you could walk in, put a week’s worth of groceries on your tab, and pay at the end of the month. 

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