What Is This Thing … Called Jewelry?

By Peggy Jo Donahue A letter from one of our readers, Josh Hall, vice president of Pala International, brought up the whole issue of whom jewelers really compete against when it comes to consumers' hearts, minds and wallets. In fact, to Hall's thinking, jewelry store clerks should be going mano a mano with computer salespeople(see his letter on p. 32). Forget about price lists and discounters and auction houses and TV shopping and the rest. It's the computers, stupid. Everyone feels a loved one should have a computer to have a competitive edge, from students to workers, says Hall. But he thinks jewelers should fight back: "The computer is a tool; jewelry is from the heart," quoth the man from Pala. I concur. I have nothing against computers, but opening up a present that's a competitive edge on Christmas Day is akin, for me, to opening up a blender. There is a great scene from the Br

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