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The Book of Sam
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Shannon Huffman


The Book of Sam


1 1 In the beginning Wal-Mart created the store.

2 And the store was without form, and emptiness was upon the white linoleum floor. And the Spirit of Wal-Mart moved upon the barren space.

3 And Wal-Mart said, Let there be products: and there were products.

4 And Wal-Mart saw the products, that they were good: and Wal-Mart divided the products from services.

5 And Wal-Mart called the products Goods, and the services he called Hair Salon and Bank.

6 And Wal-Mart said, Let there be aisles in the midst of the Goods, and let those divide the Goods from other Goods.

7 And Wal-Mart made the aisles, and divided the Goods on one side of the aisle from the Goods on the other side of the aisle; and it was so.

8 And Wal-Mart called the aisles One, Two, Three…

9 And Wal-Mart said, Let the Goods be

gathered together according to type, and let Health and Beauty, Bed and Bath and Women’s Clothing appear: and it was so.

10 And Wal-Mart said, Let the designers of Women’s Clothing be gathered together unto one place, and let clothing for young adults appear: and it was so.

11 And Wal-Mart called young adult section Juniors; and the gathering together of name brand labels he called Fashion: and Wal-Mart saw that it was good.

12 And Wal-Mart said, Let there be registers at the ends of the aisles; and let them accept cash.

13 And Wal-Mart made two great financing options; the greater Credit Card to rule the credit-worthy, and the lesser Lay-Away to rule credit-unworthy.

14 And Wal-Mart said, Let the aisles bring forth abundantly the moving of products that hath shelf-life.


15 And Wal-Mart created great wrinkle-free chinos, and every other Good, which the aisles brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every service: and Wal-Mart saw that it was good.

16 And Wal-Mart blessed the Goods and services, saying, Sell for a low price before you are out-of-season.

17 And Wal-Mart said, Let us make consumers in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the Credit Card and Lay-Away, and over cash.

18 And Wal-Mart said, Let there be brand loyalty, and he created the smiley-faced logo: and Wal-Mart saw that it was good.

19 So Wal-Mart created the consumer in his own image, in the image of Wal-Mart he created him; male and female he created them.

20 And Wal-Mart said, Behold, I have given you every consumable product on the face of all the earth, every Levi’s jacket, every washing machine; to

you it shall be for purchase.

21 Thus the store was finished.

22 And on the seventh day Wal-Mart ended his work which he had made; and he rested.

23 And Wal-Mart blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it as a Day of Shopping.

2 1 And Wal-Mart created a man consumer named Calvin, and placed him in the middle of Electronics.

2 And Wal-Mart commanded the man, Of every television thou mayest freely watch.

3 But of the plasma TV, thou shalt not watch it; for on the day that thou watchest, thou shalt surely go blind.

4 And Wal-Mart caused a deep sleep to fall upon Calvin and he slept; and he took his wallet, and closed up the pocket thereof;

5 And of the wallet, which Wal-Mart had taken from man, he made a woman consumer, Yves, and brought her unto the man.

6 And Calvin said, This is now cash of my cash, and Credit Card of my Credit Card: she shall be called Woman because she was taken out of Man.


7 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be of one bank account.

8 Now the Serpent Joseph Stalin was more subtle than any consumer. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath Wal-Mart said Ye shall not watch the plasma television?

9 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may watch all other televisions in electronics:

10 But the plasma television which is in Electronics, Wal-Mart hath said, Ye shall not watch it, neither shall ye change its channels, lest ye go blind.

11 And the Serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely go blind:

12 For Wal-Mart doth know that in the day ye watch the plasma television, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

13 And when the woman saw that the plasma television was good to watch, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a television to be desired to make one wise, she took of the remote thereof, and did watch, and gave also

unto her husband with her; and he did watch.

14 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they had watched an inferior picture screen before.

15 And they heard the voice of Wal-Mart walking on the cool floor: and Calvin and his wife hid themselves from the presence of Wal-Mart amongst the items in the Intimate Apparel department.

16 And Wal-Mart said, Has thou watched the plasma television, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not watch?

17 And the woman said, Serpent Joseph Stalin beguiled me, and I did watch.

18 And Wal-Mart said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all other Communist Dictators, and above every wicked Tyrant; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life.

19 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt try on designer fashions; and thy desire shall be to fit into a smaller dress size to attract thy husband,

and he shall rule over thee.

20 And unto Calvin he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast watched of the plasma television, of which I forbade, cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou watch of it all the days of thy life.

3 1 This is the book of Greenspan.

2 When Store Manager Greenspan had worked at the store for five years he said, With the current recession, consumers aren’t purchasing as many Goods and services, thou shalt lower rates to spur growth.

3 And Wal-Mart saw that the wickedness of consumers was great because they did not buy his Goods or any goods at all. And Wal-Mart said, The end of all has come before me; for the store is filled with out-of-date products and consumers are paying their Credit Card bills in full every month. I will destroy this work and start again.

4 And Wal-Mart commanded Greenspan, Makest thee a fire-proof box out of steel, build into it a ventilation system to the outside.

Into the box put the two wealthiest consumers and two of every product, select two oven mitts, two clean pairs of Dockers, two bottles of Pantene shampoo…

5 And Greenspan did according unto all that Wal-Mart commanded.

6 Unto the steel box Greenspan placed Calvin and Yves, and their descendants. He placed two of each product, of each product he placed two, including Diet Cokes; Dilbert calendars; dictionaries; CDs by Madonna, Dave Matthews, the Beatles, Sting, Usher, 50 Cent, Melissa Etheridge, Barenaked Ladies, Celine Dion, Elton John, Jimmy Buffett, Clay Aiken, Alan Jackson, Metalica, George Strait, Counting Crows, R.E.M., and Prince; DVDs of the movies Titanic, There’s Something About Mary, School of Rock, Chicago, Independence Day, The Mummy (I and II), Rocky (and all sequels), The Godfather (I and II), The Pianist, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Phone Booth, Election, Pretty Woman, Finding Nemo, and Stripes; DVDs of the television shows Sopranos, Friends, Sex
  in the City, Six Feet Under, A Charlie Brown Christmas, Alias, The Chris Isaak Show, Saturday Night Live, Will and Grace, Frasier, Survivor, General Hospital, The Bachelor, Fear Factor and Scooby-Doo; CD players; 27-inch televisions; coffee grinders; girl’s flip flops in aquamarine, fuscia and lime green; colanders; waffle irons; bathroom rugs; kitchen curtains; hair dressers; futons; self-assembled desks, computer stands, night stands, curio cabinets, kitchen tables, stools, entertainment centers and coffee tables; watches; necklaces; Christmas wreaths; bank tellers; Easter baskets; games of Sorry, Scrabble, Mousetrap, Yahtzee, Pictionary, Monopoly, Taboo, Chutes and Ladders, Risk, and Go Fish; Barbie dolls; Mary Kate and Ashley dolls; Legos; puzzles; Fisher Price trucks; Matchbox cars; G.I. Joes; cat toys; goldfish in a bowl; plant food; books by Danielle Steele, Ernest Hemmingway, Stephen King, Norman Mailer, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Alice Walker, E.L. Doctorow, Sylvia Plath, Dorothy

Parker, Jane Austen, Tolstoy, Dave Barry, Charles Dickens, Philip Roth, Laurie Anderson, Rush Limbaugh, Dr. Spock, Dr. Seuss, Henry James, Kate Chopin, and Al Franken; and Fabreeze...

7 And Greenspan locked himself into the box, along with all the products and the consumers.

8 And when Wal-Mart saw that two of every Good and service were safe, he littered the store with lighter fluid and started a great fire, and all the products burned and until there was nothing left to buy, and Wal-Mart saw that it was good.

9 And the fire raged for 40 minutes before the fire department extinguished it.

10 And six months later the insurance money arrived, and Wal-Mart rebuilt his creation to even greater heights, including Food and Portraits sections.

11 And Wal-Mart called the creation Super Store, and it was good.

12 And to reward Greenspan for his devotion, Wal-Mart gave Greenspan dominion over the new Goods and services, and

he gave him stock options.

4 1 And to ensure that consumers not fall prey to Serpent Joseph Stalin again, Wal-Mart ordered Greenspan to travel to a convention at Disney World, to fly by coach and not to upgrade to business or first class, not to upgrade Greenspan was ordered.

2 And when Greenspan arrived at Disney World, Wal-Mart commanded him to attend the business seminar Creating Your Market, where Wal-Mart revealed to Greenspan the ten laws that consumers must abide by, and these were the laws the Wal-Mart revealed:

3 I am the Wal-Mart your Super Store, thou shalt have no other stores before me.

4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness or forgery of that which is in Goods or services.

5 Thou shalt not take the name of Wal-Mart in vain.

6 Remember the Day of Shopping and keep it holy.

7 Honor thy Credit Card and thy Lay-away.

8 Thou shalt not return Goods for a price higher than one paid.


9 Thou shalt not be satisfied with the Goods one has.

10 Thou shalt not steal.

11 Thou shalt not bear false witness against a servant of Wal-Mart.

12 Thou shalt covet thy neighbor’s belongings.

13 And Wal-Mart commanded Greenspan to return to the Super Store with these laws, and to use the smiley-faced logo in a marketing campaign to get consumers to buy more, and it was good.

5 1 And though consumers bought more and paid interest on their Credit Cards, the Serpent Joseph Stalin still lurketh, and Wal-Mart knew that the serpent would induce the consumers to save their money or give it to charity.

2 And Wal-Mart knew that their only salvation was if somebody suffered for them.

3 And Wal-Mart sent his daughter Martha Stewart to save the consumers from keeping their money.

4 And Martha Stewart preached through television, and through a magazine, about the joys of hand made wedding invitations, fresh baked lemon tarts and Egyptian cotton sheets.


5 And the consumers bought more, and it was good.

6 And Martha Stewart sold Goods at another store, hoping to convert the unfaithful to the ways of Wal-Mart, and it was good.

7 Serpent Joseph Stalin saw how Martha Stewart converted the savers and the charity donators, and he vowed to put an end to her.

8 One day while Martha was creating a plant stand out of an old wooden chair, he said to her, Yea, hath Wal-Mart said Ye shall not watch the plasma television?

9 And Martha said unto the serpent, We may watch all other televisions in electronics:

10 But the plasma television which is in Electronics, Wal-Mart hath said, Ye shall not watch it, neither shall ye change its channels, lest ye go blind.

11 And Serpent Joseph Stalin said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely go blind:

12 And Martha said, Surely I will not question the word of Wal-Mart, if he sayith I shalt go blind, then I believe.

13 And the serpent slithered away, vowing

to get his revenge on the woman who would not watch the plasma television.

14 A day later, the Serpent came to Martha in Wal-Mart disguised as a poor old woman and said, Yea, I doth require a CD player but I have no cash or Credit Cards, will you steal it for me?

15 And Martha said, I shalt not, for it is against the law of Wal-Mart to steal.

16 And the Serpent slithered away.

17 The next Day of Shopping, he disguised himself again, this time he came to Martha as a minister.

18 And he said, Surely thou canst be shopping when thoust are so tired, this should be a Day of Rest.

19 And Martha said, Thy shalt not rest until all consumers own plush towels and have Credit Card debt the size of their mortgage.

20 And the Serpent was rebuked a third time, but he did not leave. Instead his cell phone rang and he answered it.

21 And he held the phone to Martha and said, It’s for you.

22 And not wanting to seem rude, even though she doubted the call was

for her, she took the phone and listened to an investment broker.

23 And Martha was persuaded to sell some stock.

24 And when she hung up the phone, the minister/Serpent had disappeared.

25 But in his place were the police, and they arrested her.

26 And the consumers wept, because they had lost Martha and thought that sheets would be rougher against the skin, and the consumers wondered how to make the perfect napkin fold.

27 But Wal-Mart told the consumers to rejoice, because it was for their consumer mistakes that she had been crucified.

28 And Wal-Mart told the consumers that Martha Stewart would rise again in seven to ten years, that she would once again create flower boxes and table cloths.

29 And there was much rejoicing, and it was good.


Note: The characters and events in this story are fictional. Any resemblance to an actual Wal-Mart is coincidental.