Thursday, November 1, 2018

Bargain Haunting

Dear Friends,

The Hard Taco song for November is called, "The Undead." If you are one of the trailblazers reading this on November 1, drive immediately to the nearest Babies 'R' Us for some amazing deals.

On fake blood and fog machines.

You see, there is no such thing as Babies 'R' Us. The franchise closed its doors in June 2018, and these were not just any doors! They were lead-free, phosphate-free, and had slats no more than 2-3/8" apart to prevent toddlers from trapping their heads. Those neurotically safe doors are now closed forever.

The Babies 'R' Us bankruptcy left dozens of strip mall vacancies all over the country, and it is not easy for developers to find new tenants for 40,000 square feet of retail space.

That is, until September, when the pop-up Halloween stores moved in, replacing every Babies 'R' Us sign with a vinyl one that says, "Spirit Halloween" or "Halloween City." For the first day or two of November, these ephemeral ghost-towns will offer deep discounts on everything in their be-warehouses.

Now here comes my Shark Tank pitch. Sure, the temporary Halloween store has been a successful business model, but could it be better? Babies 'R' Us is only one of many retail giants who filed for bankruptcy in the last few years. I propose that pop-up Halloween stores focus on specialty merchandise that takes advantage of the rich commercial history of their temporary locations.

Here is where you would shop for your Halloween specialty items, sorted by abandoned retailer.

Payless Shoe Source ->
Payless Boo Source
What to get:  Discount costumes, like a used white sheet with some holes cut out of it

Radio Shack ->
Radio Shriek
What to get: A bowl that screams when someone takes a piece of candy

Sears ->
What to get: Gory makeup

Circuit City ->
Haunted Circus City
What to get: A freak show clown costume

K-Mart ->
Passed Away Mart
What to get:  A variety of home goods, but checking out takes forever, because the cashiers are all dead.

Brookstone ->
What to get: Fake grave markers to make your front yard look like a cemetery

The Sports Authority ->
The Sports Atrocity
What to get:  A zombie football player costume

Pier 1 Imports ->
Fear 1 Grim-ports
What to get: Anything you want, but just like it's predecessor, all merchandise would be handmade by children in Myanmarese sweatshops.

Blockbuster Video ->
Block Monster Video
What to get: A DVD about the Creepers from Minecraft

F.A.O. Schwarz ->
R.I.P. Schwarz
What to get: The toy superstore founder's exsanguinated remains

Babies 'R' Us ->
Babies 'R' Stabbing Us
What to get:  Chucky dolls

With warmest regards,

Editor's note: I removed the part about The Limited being replaced by the Limbless Dread, because nobody would get it.