These last few weeks have turned into a whirlwind of meetings, emergency trips to the grocery store and conversations I never thought I’d be having with my 13-year old stepson. I never thought I’d have to repurpose our guest room into an office in 3-days flat. I never thought I’d have cocktails with friends over zoom. I never thought people would go into a flat-out panic at the thought of running out of toilet paper or that doctors and nurses would run out of surgical masks.
Yet, here we are.
Through all the chaos, it’s been hard not to feel down. Life as we know it has changed; retailers are closing their doors, school has been cancelled, and restaurants are shifting to take-out only.
The first week and a half I think I had more than my fair share of virtual pity parties (and wine). Once I finished feeling sorry for myself, I noticed something amazing. Retailers decided not to join the pity party. Instead, they’ve been asking, “how can I help?”.
The answers some have found have been nothing short of amazing:
- Jo-Ann Fabrics posted a video to YouTube with step-by-step instructions on how to make a face mask
- LVMH has shifted from making perfume to making hand sanitizer
- Crocs is donating 10,000 pairs of shoes PER DAY to healthcare workers
- MLB and Fanatics have partnered to make surgical masks and gowns using the same jersey material that baseball players wear on field (cool, right??)
- And literally dozens of retailers have shifted from manufacturing clothes to manufacturing masks and gowns for healthcare workers
Personally, I’d like to thank my local Dick’s Sporting Goods for offering curbside pickup. We’re taking some of this downtime to learn how to play darts and become more fit as a family. And now my stepson has a new basketball. Maybe someday I’ll beat him at HORSE. Maybe.
I’m not sure how we found ourselves in this strange new reality, and I’m not sure how or when we’ll get back to normal. But I do know that retail is the most innovative industry on the planet, and it will always be there when we need it most.