Friday, December 7, 2012
The Shopper Who Came in to the Cold!
By Jody Worsham
I have renamed Black Friday. I am now calling it Blue Thursday. Why, you may ask, as I am sure you are, so I shall tell you. I’ll tell you even if you did not ask.
This was the year I introduced the Tween-Ager to the Thanksgiving shopping frenzy known as Black Friday only this year it started on Thursday. We had finished our Thanksgiving dinner and it was truly a thanksgiving because I did not cook. We prepared for battle: store floor plans for location of all sale items, cell phones charged and ready, snack crackers, gum and water bottle in large purse, store flyers with high priority items circled, and final trip to the bathroom. I explained that when it comes to Black Friday shopping, it’s every man, woman, and child for himself. She must plant her feet, stand firm and under no circumstances relinquish her hold on any wanted item. We were ready.
We said good-by to our loved ones and left for Wal-Mart, our first stop. We were able to secure a good parking place close to the door as we were two and a half hours early for the first event. This also enabled us to canvas the store and locate the TV and trampoline lines and to sneak a peek under the black plastic wrapped crates for the “good stuff”. At six-thirty the tween-ager took up her position in the TV line located next to the refrigerated beer and wine. She was number eight in line for the sale that would start at 10 p.m. I took up my position in the trampoline line which began between the frozen meet aisle and the frozen corny dog bins. After the first hour, I realized we had made a serious tactical error in our battle preparations. No jackets. My “event” would begin at 8 p.m. I promised to relieve the tween-ager as soon as I got the trampoline but she was not to leave her position.
By 7:45 p.m. I was freezing from having stood next to the frozen chickens for so long. The tween-ager called to say she was also freezing, could I get her some hot chocolate. At 7:48 my heretofore dormant teacher “fight’s about to start” antenna started to vibrate. The noise rose and the first fight began on aisle three. I left my position to make sure the tween-ager was not in harm’s way. I explained it was just a fight over 700 thread count sheets. “Sheets! They’re fighting over sheets? I want to go see.” “No, maintain your position” and I sneezed and returned to the freezer line.
At eight o’clock I got the trampoline certificate, and then went to relieve the tween-ager. Over the course of the next two hours we became friendly with the other people in line; some were friendlier than others due to the dwindling supply of Bud-Lite that had previously been in the refrigerator section when the line first formed. We got reports from other shoppers of people shoving, pushing, elbowing their way to snatch an X-box and that was just the senior citizens. I did notice that there weren’t any of the motorized shopping carts for the handicapped. I guess Wal-Mart feared hit and runs.
Shivering and sneezing we left Wal-Mart at eleven o’clock with our TV, trampoline, and a buggy full of things we didn’t know we had to have.
“This is great,” said the Tween-ager, “what are we going to do before the next store opens at mid-night?”