Guide to Moral Living in Examples: Convenience Stores

A pack of Jersey Devils flowed into the New Jersey convenience store where Oscar worked. Oscar glanced up from his novel, grunted, then went back to reading.

The devils filled the store. They clustered around in front of the checkout counter. The candy bar wrappers on the impulse buy shelves rustled as their hairy bodies pressed against them, and they accidentally pushed magazines out of their racks. The smell of pine trees and raccoons filled the air.

Oscar kept reading his novel.

One of the Jersey Devils let out a whistle to get Oscar's attention.

Oscar sighed and set down his book.

"Can I help you?"

One of the devils stepped forward and held out a card. Oscar took it and it read: SIGAREETS PLZ TU PAX.

Oscar shook his head.

"Holy shit!" somebody at the back of the store screamed.

Oscar and the devils turned as one to stare.

"George, calm down, it's just a bunch of Jersey Devils," Oscar said. "We do live in Jersey, what do you expect?"

"Get them out of the store!" George yelled. "Get them out of here right now!"

"Fine, fine, just calm down," Oscar said. He looked one of the Jersey Devils in its yellow, bulbous eye. "I'm sorry, but I can't sell you cigarettes unless you have an ID."

The Jersey Devils looked at one another, barking in their native tongue.

George's eyes widened. "What'd you tell them that for?! Just give them the cigarettes! Give them a carton, give them a dozen! Why are you arguing with them?!"

Oscar shrugged and picked his novel back up.

The devils barked to one another.

"Oscar, do something! They're making those evil sounds again!"

"They don't sound evil to me," Oscar said.

Three devils jumped onto the counter, stamped their hooves against the sticky surface, and bared their long, vicious teeth. They unfurled their wings to add to the menace.

"Oscar! Give them the cigarettes!" George yelled.

"Nope," Oscar replied.

The devils breathed gouts of flame, small at first but growing with each breath. Their long, goat-like faces contorted with rage. More and more leapt onto the counter.

"Do something!" George yelled.

"Ugh, fine," Oscar said. He dropped his book and took off his shirt. With a stretch and a yawn, his own wings unfurled; they were the tear drop shape of a moth's, and a delicate powder dusted the counter. With two powerful beats of the wings, the devils were swept from the counter and knocked into a pile in front of the rows of Saturn candy bars.

"Better?" asked Oscar.

The Moral: if you hire the mothman to get rid of jersey devils, make sure to have a bigass spotlight on hand to get rid of the mothman.

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