The Czar was in need of new boots lately, as his previous pair of boots lost their ability to keep out snow and blood. Any excuse to go Bass Pro Shop, really, as they have very nice inexpensive and not at all product-placed-for-a-small-mentioning-fee boots. Most of Gormogons (if not all) utilie some combination of Bass or Cabelas, or to a lesser extend Gander or Dicks. Or if they are like the Czar, potentially all four in a single afternoon.
So the Czar obtained his new boots and was delighted to try their blood-proofing abilities by beheading the Millennial who earlier wandered out onto the crosswalk in front of the Czars car, requiring the Czar to stop fully, but then proceeded to pull out a cell phone and begin texting in the crosswalk backing up traffic.
Once the Czar was satisfied the boots met his quality requirements, he left the horrified green-shirted staff to deal with the cleanup in Aisle Eww and commenced to the firearm section of the store. Conveniently, they are nearly adjacent departments.
The glass case shelves once plastered with handguns were largely barren except for the most expensive models. Staff had done what they could to widen the displays to make them look more full, but no one (perhaps not even Volgi) could disguise the lack of product. And despite this, there were at least a dozen people waiting to be helped.
The Czar was more interested in something else: ammunition supply. Word from the Czars okhrana is that ammunition supplies will remain bad until the Summer, at least. Ammunition makers are running all machines at full capacity, but the backorders are so bad that the shortage will last until mid-Summeralthough, econmics being what they are, you should see the shelves filling up again in Spring.
Indeed, the Czar saw two individuals waiting by the handgun ammunition, which is stored in a locking glass case. A greenshirt came by open the case for one of the customers who said he could not find any 9mm ammunition.
The Bass employee hesitantly suggested there might be a reason for that, but looked way in the back. He found four boxes of 9mm ammunition and pulled them forward. The first customer said he would take all four, but the Bass employee patiently explained they were limiting customers to two, each. Well, Ill take those two, then, the customer remarked. The second customer leaned forward and said And Ill take those other two.
Okay, now were out, the clerk said, handing the last boxes to the two customers. The clerk looked up toward the Czar and said Hope you werent here for 9mm. The Czar replied no, but was interested in the .40 stock. We still got them, he said, pointing to a third-full shelf, but not for much longer. All we have are the more expensive hollow points. If you want range rounds, you need to buy a box of hundreds.
The Czar saw the price for one hundred rounds was only a little more than a box of fifty would be a year ago. Heck. So we bought two hundred rounds and wished them well. The clerk replied that things were still crazy. They clean out of 9mm boxes in hours, and then the .45s go just as fast. The .40 calibers last almost a week between shipments, and no one can get primers to do reloading thanks to all the panic buying.
We were pleased to hear that last comment because the paranoia that the Obama administration is secretly buying up all the ammunition seems to be past; there is growing general awareness among the gun crowdas far as the Czar can tell from casual conversationsthat the ammunition shortage is completely the result of retail buying: the gun owners are going on runs of the stores, cleaning them out…not government red tapers.
But like any product run, the shelves will remain empty for longer they would have. In another month, we should see more ammunition back on shelves, and while you might be limited still to two boxes of the favorite stuff, you will soon be able to get two boxes.
Stand by. Be patient.
Божію Поспѣшествующею Милостію Мы, Дима Грозный Императоръ и Самодержецъ Всероссiйскiй, цѣсарь Московскiй. The Czar was born in the steppes of Russia in 1267, and was cheated out of total control of all Russia upon the death of Boris Mikhailovich, who replaced Alexander Yaroslav Nevsky in 1263. However, in 1283, our Czar was passed over due to a clerical error and the rule of all Russia went to his second cousin Daniil (Даниил Александрович), whom Czar still resents. As a half-hearted apology, the Czar was awarded control over Muscovy, inconveniently located 5,000 miles away just outside Chicago. He now spends his time seething about this and writing about other stuff that bothers him.