Mall Power Outage Causes Reverse Looting

By Pug Ransom

Published August 30th, 2015

GUILDERLAND — A brief power outage at Crossgates Mall on Thursday set off a wave of unruly, near-anarchistic behavior amongst shoppers, who ran wildly through the darkened shopping center storming select stores.

“Once the power was lost and the lights went out, we immediately locked the mall down out of fear of widespread looting,” said Nepal Blart, Crossgates chief administrative mall cop. “What we did not expect, however, was a mad rush of people running throughout the mall to return items they previously purchased.”

Clem Baker of Schoharie said the sudden loss of power triggered in him an “inexplicable” surge of common sense.

“As I stood there in the dark, I just said to myself, ‘Clem, you really didn’t need to spend $24 on that novelty coffee mug shaped like a lady’s boob with the big ceramic nipple.’ So, I just marched right on back to Spencer’s and asked for my money back,” Baker said.

Mallory Snepps of Albany said she experienced a similar epiphany.

“Suddenly, there I was, leaning against the wall near the Orange Julius, completely unable to reconcile why I just spent $103 on two pairs of jeans with strategically placed rips in the thighs and knees,” said Snepps. “I mean, who in their right mind buys ripped clothing? I was so overcome with shame that I bowled four people over as I ran through the dark to get my cash back.”

UAlbany Psychology Professor Zeb Freud said the apparent flood of rational thought that overwhelmed mall-goers during the blackout is not surprising.

“Really, there’s no great mystery here,” Freud said. “Once power was lost, people immediately fell out of the collective trance cast upon them by the combination neon glare emanating from the store signage, the subliminal message to ‘spend, spend, spend’ buried deep inside the mind-numbing Muzak that plays non-stop over the mall’s public address system, and the free Chinese food samples that are routinely laced with Ecstasy.”


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