CHARLOTTE, N.C. – As more than 1,000 RadioShack locations are set to close following a filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, the company is trying to get rid of the remaining inventory in those stores by any means necessary.
“We have a ton of random stuff left in these stores,” RadioShack inventory director Greg Thompson said. “At this point, we’re just begging people to come take whatever they want. For free. Please go to your local RadioShack and you’ll find that we’re not joking.”
“We understand that people enjoy the act of looting whenever possible. Well, here’s your chance.”
The stores set to close now consist of mostly empty shelves, having long sold out of anything that would be of use to a customer. Many stores certainly already look looted, like the product of an apocalyptic frenzy. But among the deserted aisles there are numerous shelves still full of various dust-covered gadgets and electronics that haven’t been touched in years.
“Do you want a corded telephone?” Thompson said. “Those have got to be cool again by now.”
Jennifer Nicholson is the manager of a closing RadioShack in the Charlotte area, but she won’t be performing just any regular managerial duties for the time being – she’s desperately trying to get rid of everything that’s left in her store so she can move on with her life. To do so, she has had to resort to tactics such as yelling on a megaphone to passersby and simply leaving the door to the store wide open while leaving for a few hours.
“A number of homeless people have begun to squat in the store,” she said. “There is now an inescapable smell of urine that hits you in the face when you enter.”
But everything in the store essentially remains untouched, as the homeless residents of the Charlotte RadioShack decline to take anything, noting that none of it would sell for even the smallest portion of food. Nicholson considers herself lucky, though, as many other RadioShack locations around the country have reported becoming homes to communities of wildly unpredictable feral cats.
Nicholson has also begun handing out baseball bats to area hoodlums, instructing them to simply bash in the windows of the store and flat-out destroy everything that is left. But this investment in sporting equipment has sadly failed to pay off.
“We’ve got higher looting standards than a sad-ass place like RadioShack,” 16-year-old delinquent and frequent destroyer of property Gavin Andrews said.
Thompson is eager to put the nightmare of these store closings behind him. Having been turned away by everything from Salvation Army stores to schools, he is putting out a simple plea to the country.
“Many of our stores have, like, four phone chargers left for out-of-date models,” Thompson said. “Just come and fucking take them, no questions asked. You’ll never have to see us again or feel embarrassed for our employees when you pass up our store in the mall. That would be nice, wouldn’t it?