Relics from a misspent youth: throwing stars procured from a dubious purveyor of dangerous items on Canal Street circa 1983. They now live in my desk, in case I'm set upon by ninjas whilst Facebooking.
These date back to an era when Canal Street still seemed like an endearingly roiling hotbed of scum and villainy (with apologies to Moss Eisley spaceport).
My favorite stops invariably included Canal Street Jean Co. (naturally), The Trader (just west of West Broadway), Industrial Plastics (where I was regularly dispatched on errands by a graphic designer I was gophering for), the original Pearl River, SoHoZat and Bomb the System on West Broadway. I also miss the odd flea markets.
Canal will never be "just another street," but one can't help but feel -- like so much of the rest of Manhattan -- it's just not the same anymore.