You've probably already seen the news reports that started last Thursday about what was initially being reported as a "possible" pool chlorine shortage this summer, which has now turned into all but a guaranteed chlorine shortage.

Following the same pattern as last year's toilet paper shortage (and the on-going ammunition shortage), as soon as people heard about the "possible" shortage, they immediately ran out and began to stock up on all the pool chlorine supplies they would need for the entire summer.

A friend was in Home Depot last Sunday and saw one customer checking out with an entire shopping cart full of chlorine tablets. We were in Lowes the same week and asked about chlorine sales, and the floor person told me they got wiped out on Monday. Friends and relatives are placing huge orders with online chlorine suppliers, resulting in those online suppliers implementing massive price increases on the chlorine products they have for sale.

So, if you can't find chlorine for you pool this summer, blame the media and the hoarding mentality of the average American. I'd be willing to bet money that if the media started to report a (unsubstantiated) story about a possible spaghetti sauce shortage because of an unexpected freeze that ruined a bunch of growing tomatoes and an increased demand for tomatoes to make ketchup, that by the end of the week, store shelves would be emptied of all spaghetti sauces as consumers bought a year's worth at once.

Here's a bit of advice: Wait for the chlorine hysteria to die down, and don't pee in the pool!

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Dennis Malloy. Any opinions expressed are Dennis Malloy's own.

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