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Tampa still just shy of trendy in retail world

With Crate & Barrel opening at International Plaza today and the new Ikea still drawing crowds, it looked like we had finally reached retail Nirvana.

My friends at the Deal Divas blog, however, insist we're still lacking because we don't have H&M, a trendy European fashion outlet. Man, it's always something.

Speaking of civic validation, Tampa still hasn't played host to MTV's Real World. But where would the cast reside: Ybor, SoHo or Channelside? I'm thinking the Box Factory Lofts next to Ikea.

Or maybe they could just live in the Ikea store and eat meatballs every night.

Seen on a bumper sticker: I'm Still Conservative And I'm Not Giving Up.

Kudos to Lime for allowing nonprofit groups to stage fundraisers at the trendy SoHo sports bar and restaurant.

At 7 p.m. tonight, it hosts Project Akilah, an effort to build a business and vocational training school for young women in Rwanda.

Tampa native Elizabeth Davis leads the effort.

Meanwhile, Pepin Distributing marketing director Bill Gieseking is striving to be the Leukemia and Lymphoma Suncoast Man Of The Year. He's gathering supporters at Splitsville in Tampa at 5:30 tonight for a fundraiser.

Add Rashad Young to the list of young people we should support.

During my visit to St. Petersburg's Sanderlin Elementary Tuesday, I asked Rashad, 11, about goals. Instead of giving the common MTV Cribs answer about wanting a fancy car or a mansion, he said he wanted to go to college, earn a master's degree, find a wife and be successful.

In that one moment, he became my new hero.

That's all I'm saying.

Tampa still just shy of trendy in retail world 05/20/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 20, 2009 11:50pm]
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