TORONTO – crews tasked with clearing the enormous warehouse discount store Honest Ed’s have encountered its third contingent of roaming, disoriented shoppers since Wednesday.
Foreman Jim Peters told reporters in a press conference that he was was not surprised to see a few lost shoppers in the first level.
“It always happens. People travel to Toronto, and they get it into their head that they’re going to climb to the top of Honest Ed’s, without any training or equipment” he explained. “It’s only a matter of time before someone confuses the sign for 69¢ belts for 96¢ bats, and boom, you’re lost and you’re going to have to survive on whatever is in the enamel pots section for a while.”
However unlike the most recent two parties, the shoppers who found themselves lost on the third level of Honest Ed’s appear to have concluded that rescue was impossible. “In Honest Ed’s upper two floors, the days are very short. By 2 PM, it’s so dark you can’t see your hand in front of your face,” rescue worker Sara Kingsley explained. “They could barely navigate through their immediate surroundings using the sharp, thigh-level corners of tables for guidance.”
“They clearly came to terms with the fact that their old lives were gone.”
Preliminary interviews with the shoppers indicate that the group developed ingenious means of survival in their new surroundings, including a system of water purification using the condensation on $1.09 bags of frozen peas.
Rookie crew member Tim Hurd was the first of the crew to make contact with the shoppers.
“I pushed a rack of $4.00 snowpants aside, and I saw this weird symbol on the ground. It looked like about 20 duck soap dispensers in a perfect circle. I knew right away they couldn’t have just fallen like that. Someone had put them there.”
“When the crew arrived, I didn’t know what to think,” survivor Pauline Edmond later told an interviewer from her hospital room. “We’d been in there so long, I’d started to believe that my previous life had been a dream. My husband, my child…had they ever been real? I’d made my own family, right here, in the half-price camping equipment.”
Edmond then took a break to breastfeed Pricemaline, her infant daughter, who had been conceived and born inside Honest Ed’s.
“It took everything in me to lower the slingshot I’d made out of a random orange thong and speak the word, “hello””.
While rehabilitation specialists remain optimistic, the shoppers have thus far had trouble adapting to the outside world, especially switching back to English after having developed a dialect based on the pun-oriented advertisements throughout Honest Ed’s”
“‘I’d like a bagel please,’ just sounds wrong, when all I want to say is “Honest ed’s customers don’t have to beg-el for low prices!!!!!’”, Edmond told reporters softly.
“We trusted each other. After all, we were all we had,” Edmond said. She then reached for a small $1.49 detergent dispenser in the shape of a duck that sat on the nightstand, and held it to her face.