Another Way to Get a Job at Best Buy: Just Show Up in a Blue Polo Shirt

Improv Everywhere's 2006 "Best Buy Uniform Prank mission"

Additional commentary by Timothy Horrigan; November 13, 2011


Over the past several years, a group called "Improv Everywhere" has pulled over 100 "missions" of various sorts in various urban settings. In 2006, they came up with an ingenious solution to the unemployment problem: about 80 pranksters bypassed the usual Best Buy application process by simply showing up on the shop floor in blue polo shirts and khakis. (Shades of Bartleby the Scrivener —only in reverse.) It took the real employees a while to figure out what was going on.

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One piece of inside info I can add to the story behind this video is that Best Buy doesn't issue embroidered polo shirts to new employees until they have stuck around for a while. During your first weeks or months of employment, you have to provide your own polo shirt. The imposters lacked name tags, but otherwise they were dressed plausibly.

This idea could be applied to other workplaces: perhaps the tens of millions of unemployed people all across these United States could simply start showing up for work. They wouldn't get paid, but interns and New Hampshire state legislators don't get paid either.


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