Watching the islandwide dismay and bewilderment over news that the iconic Robinsons will close its remaining department stores, marking a watershed moment for Singapore retail, one is reminded of a telling comment that appears in The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway's first major novel.
In that story, published in 1926, hard-drinking war veteran Mike Campbell, asked how he went bankrupt, responds: "Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly."
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