Greetings Loyal Store Employee! We think you’re doing a great job, even though we don’t show that through better pay and/or benefits. Regardless, we want to help you. Right now, you might be receiving a lot of questions from customers about the global supply chain. Don’t worry. Your trusty corporate leadership is here to help guide you through these unchartered waters!

Why is there nothing for sale here?

Tell them it’s not because people don’t want to take low-paying jobs unloading shipping containers. It’s because all those people who open the containers want to work from home now. They think it’s their turn, but it doesn’t work that way. If they stay home, the items don’t get loaded onto trucks, the boxes don’t get here, and we can’t sell them to you at a big markup.

When will you have stuff again?

Tough to say, but tell them it’s important to buy a lot of other stuff now because it may not be around for the next three, maybe four holiday seasons.

Could there be more in the back?

Tell them there’s nothing in the back and there never was. Do not let customers think there is a back, while we both know there totally is. Everything we have would be on the shelves.

Wait, back up. What are shelves, exactly?

Tell them you understand—shelves are pretty confusing. Who invented those things, anyway? They’re the flat surfaces all around us that float parallel to the floor, like slender, solid, low-to-the-ground clouds.

How are shelves real? Are we living in a world where gravity is defeated that easily?

Tell them we are and that it’s no wonder this is the sort of world that has supply chain issues.

What’s with all the numbers on the shelves?

Tell them those are prices, which tell you, the customer, how much the items cost.

Why are the prices different?

Tell them different things cost different amounts, and that the price is affected by the cost to make the product, both in labor and materials.

This all seems like a very exact social science.

It’s called economics, and no, it is not.

Does another store have the item I need?

No, it likely doesn’t, but don’t tell them that. Suggest making the trip to that store, even if the app says it’s 400 miles away and there’s one left. There’s never one left. Then they’ll buy something else at that store to justify the trip. Suggest that driving to a store several hours away presents a good chance to listen to that podcast they’ve been meaning to get to about someone who may or may not have been murdered.

I ordered my stuff online and chose in-store pickup at checkout. Is it here?

Sadly, no. Ordering things online and choosing in-store pickup rips an irreparable hole in space-time. A transaction that occurs online exists in one reality, while physically picking the item up from the store occurs in another. The two cannot co-exist, and when your order is pulled for in-store pickup in another reality, it causes further supply chain issues in that universe.

The app says it’s here.

Are you using the app from the other reality?

Oh shit.


Is my stuff sitting in a shipyard in this reality?

Most likely, yes.

Can we go get it?

Tell them you can, but you’ll have to clock out first. At this time, we are encouraging this behavior.

Can you be my lookout while I break into the storage container?

Tell them you can, but the company is in no way liable and does not sanction this behavior, though we applaud you’re going above and beyond for the customer. Again, don’t forget to clock out.

There are a lot of storage containers here. Which one should I start with?

Go with a blue one. We like blue.

I sliced my arm trying to break into the storage container. I’m losing a lot of blood.

Remind the customer that you’re there off the clock and the company is in no way liable for their injury.

Then, call 911.

Why is there such a long line to get into heaven?

To be honest, they don’t pay very well there.