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Dear Customer I Served Yesterday:

I have to say, first and foremost, that I was regretful that we couldn’t provide you with the item you wanted. I feel compelled to point out that I wasn’t crying myself to sleep the other night because we couldn’t – you were neither nice nor pleasant, so why the fuck would I – but rather I was regretful because I am paid to provide you with items you want to buy, and therefore I’m always a little annoyed when we carry the item and it’s not in stock. It’s not like I take it personally, but it is my job and I’m always ticked when I can’t do my job well through no fault of my own.

That said, I really feel like we need to have a chat about your use of the word “unbelievable.”

Digging into Wictionary, and I’ll admit it’s a totally rocky source, you’ll see that unbelievable is a negative of believable, which has its roots in the verb to believe. Believe, just in case you were unaware, means, loosely, “to accept as true.” Unbelievable, therefore, means “something which one finds unacceptable as true.” While it does not necessarily refer to something that isn’t true, it does infer the speaker may have some difficulty accepting its truth. Here’s a brief list of things I, personally, consider unbelievable:

1. That, upon release, Home Alone was the number one hit in the box office for 12 weeks straight
2. That the word “buffalo,” repeated eight times, can, without any additional words needed, make a grammatically correct sentence
3. That the town of Fucking, Austria, exists
4. God*

You’ll notice that I did not include “that the toy store on the corner is currently out of the ‘T’ shaped car in the name train display” on this list. I, and most people, find this entirely believable. I mean, just in case you weren’t aware T is a pretty commonly used letter. Furthermore, in order to get each letter we need to place an order with the (tiny) supplier, have them hand-carve a little wooden letter and attach wheels to it so it works on your child’s train set, then hand it to the nice FedEx man who will then ship it cross country where another nice FedEx man will then bring it to our store.

Perhaps you think there is a name train vortex, from which we pull the letters? No such thing exists as yet. I know, I know: we, as store employees, really need to petition the universe to develop a few strategic wooden-train-piece-vortices to solve this problem. (If the universe doesn’t answer, don’t worry. I hear good things are coming down the pipeline in Federal toy store research funding – top priority. I mean, fuck healthcare, rising poverty and the staggering national debt, our politicians know we need to be improving the flow of luxury goods to the hands of those who need them to satisfy immediate wants.**) Unfortunately until this scientific breakthrough occurs, we will, on occasion, be out of letters. I know: it’s a pain in the ass. But honestly? Maybe you should have decided to buy it more than a day before you needed it.

Thanks,

MJ

PS: You named your kid what?!?! I’m sure he won’t get the shit kicked out of him in school.

* Numbers 1-3 are, despite their improbability, true.
** Sarcasm removed, I actually find this sentence wholly believable as well.

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