Folks, it’s happening: the Dalai Lama has just been spotted perusing all the lava lamps on display at a Spencer’s Gifts in Zanesville, Ohio, a momentous occasion marking the very first incarnation of the Dalai Lama to visit a Spencer’s. From the initial sighting to up-to-the-minute reporting, ClickHole is on location bringing you moment-by-moment coverage of the Tibetan spiritual leader’s shopping experience at Spencer’s.
REPORTING LIVE: 4:52am EST
The Dalai Lama has arrived at the Colony Square shopping center via an Uber XL, pre-dawn, with his entourage of translators, personal assistants, and security guards in company. He’s smiling and waving to an unoccupied minivan as he slowly crosses the otherwise empty parking lot towards Spencer’s Gifts.
UPDATE: 4:55am EST
The Dalai Lama’s knocking on the glass door at Spencer’s. It is closed. His entourage waits behind him, hands clasped, heads bowed.
UPDATE: 7:42am EST
The sun has risen. The Dalai Lama’s still knocking on the entrance door for Spencer’s, his patience unwavered in the slightest.
UPDATE: 10:27am EST
The manager of this Spencer’s Gifts location has approached the storefront. As the Dalai Lama’s entourage parts to allow her forward, the Spencer’s Gifts manager, Tina-Lynn, 32, has greeted the Dalai Lama with a bow, avoiding eye contact out of respect as she presents him with two items for him to bless: Spencer’s-brand anal beads and a novelty t-shirt featuring a nun in sunglasses with her middle fingers raised. Addressing him as “Your Holiness”, she’s just informed the Dalai Lama that the store will not be open for another half-hour. The Dalai Lama is nodding as Tina-Lynn enters the store, locking the door behind her. The Dalai Lama now continues waiting and knocking.
UPDATE: 11:00am EST
Spencer’s Gifts opens. The Dalai Lama and his entourage have entered the store, and are heading directly to the lava lamp section, where seven marginally different varieties of lava lamp are lit up on display.
UPDATE: 11:02am EST
The Dalai Lama is now contemplatively watching the floating orbs of melted wax inside the lamps as they stretch, melt apart, and recombine. He appears quite calmed by the lamps.
UPDATE: 11:08am EST
The Dalai Lama just burned a finger on one of the lava lamps.
UPDATE: 11:10am EST
The Dalai Lama has briefly stepped away from the lava lamps to bless a 13 year-old Spencer’s customer in the gag gift aisle. “Money, success, fame…these things will not bring you the complete happiness that a testicle keychain or a prank pregnancy test will,” the Dalai Lama had his translator tell the young teenager.
UPDATE: 11:15am EST
While examining a lava lamp featuring a tie-dye pattern on its metal base, the Dalai Lama whistled and raised his eyebrows at the $39.99 price tag.
UPDATE: 11:19am EST
The Dalai Lama just burned the same finger on the same lava lamp again.
UPDATE: 11:23am EST
The Dalai Lama is having a personal assistant tweet from his official Twitter account, “To discover peace of mind, we must cultivate compassion for other human beings—to charge your fellow man $39.99 for a beautiful lava lamp is an example of a lack of compassion, and it goes against everything I stand for.”
UPDATE: 11:27am EST
One of the Dalai Lama’s monk attendants, who had been perusing a rack of edible undies in an adjacent aisle, has discovered a life-size Chucky doll and brought it to the attention of His Holiness. The Dalai Lama is now cradling the Chucky doll as his translator informs a Spencer’s cashier that “[the Dalai Lama] would like to rescue this malnourished orphan,” and take it to “a Tibetan monastery to be raised under Buddhist teachings.”
UPDATE: 11:28am EST
The Dalai Lama has returned to the lava lamp section, while a personal assistant has begun to shave the Chucky doll’s head and dress it in a red and gold monastic robe.
UPDATE: 11:29am EST
The Dalai Lama has removed his glasses and is staring into a lava lamp from mere centimeters away.
UPDATE: 11:30am EST
The Dalai Lama just singed his forehead on a lava lamp.
UPDATE: 11:35am EST
The Dalai Lama has reached a decision: he’s selected a blue lava lamp with a pattern of purple skulls decorating its base. It’s priced at $34.99. His attendants have taken the lava lamp to the cash register.
UPDATE: 11:36am EST
The Dalai Lama has had an assistant post another tweet from his Twitter account: “I have purchased a lava lamp for $34.99, a very reasonable price for a lava lamp. It is wonderful to look at. Thank you @Spencers, for promoting happiness in others, the ultimate human purpose.”
UPDATE: 12:15pm EST
After waiting over 30 minutes outside Spencer’s Gifts for another Uber XL to arrive, the Dalai Lama and his entourage have departed back to the airport, where they will return to Tibet following a 9 hour lay-over at LaGuardia Airport in Queens, New York.
Wow. What a historic moment to witness unfolding in real time!
Whether this incarnation of the Dalai Lama will ever return to a Spencer’s Gifts remains to be seen. All we know for sure is that he really seems to have been moved by his experience at Spencer’s, and we’d bet that Spencer’s employees feel the same. Awesome!