I never know what to do when I’m home. I eat. I sleep. I write but sometimes I find myself trapped in the vacant wasteland of boredom. I say to myself why not blog and that’s exactly what I’m doing now. Let me paint you a picture. I’m alone, in my socks and boxers, sitting on my bed, with the TV on. Well actually I’m not alone as I have Danny Glover on my TV in one of the lethal weapons movies. Danny Glover movies are awesome, no if ands or buts about it.
Now, this don’t have sh*t to do with sh*t, but I might as well share a story with you. Read it and I hope you don’t like it because if you don’t you just wasted moments of your life you will never get back because of me. HA. Wasting your time, finding someone to do my laundry, and to escape the (arm)pits of larger-than-life dullness are the reasons why I started blogging in the first place.
Story time. Take a deep breath. Gain composure of yourself. Are you ready? Today is the Friday before Thanksgiving break and that means a couple of things. First off no school for a week and that is always fantastic news. Second, we are exactly one week (seven days) away from Black Friday, which in my opinion is the biggest holiday of the year. Black Friday is bigger than black history month, Christmas AND Christmas Eve, and it’s bigger than even America’s birthday. You must be thinking wow Tyler that’s a pretty epic holiday. And you are absolutely correct.
Black Friday is the day where shopaholics lose control of who they are as human beings. In a more figurative sense, Black Friday is where most stores offer the most absurd and incredible deals and discounts the day after Thanksgiving. It is the single biggest shopping day of the year.
With these stores offering such blockbuster deals, they usually run out of the advertised product which leads to mad dashes and thousands of people to the stores at ridiculous times during the night. So what happens is these crazy people will camp out in front of the store the night of Thanksgiving and wait in line till the morning when the store opens to be first in line.
Let me break it down for all of you basic people still on a KinderCare reading level still. Let’s say Best Buy is offering a 52’’ plasma TV for $350.00 dollars. That’s an amazing deal, right? Well Best Buy will only have 3 of these TV’s in stock on Black Friday so you have to get in line outside the store before it opens to have a chance to get one. Some people, who really want their TV’s, get there around 7 on Thanksgiving night and actually bring tents and sleeping bags and sleep outside the door to be first in line. Shout out to Hooked On Phonics if you still don’t understand.
Created a picture for those illiterate ones. (My first go around with Microsoft Paint. Don’t call me Perez Hilton or I will slap you in the face.)
Okay, so in with the newspaper on Thanksgiving night comes hundreds of ads from every store you can dream of advertising their products that are at an enormously reduced price. Shopaholic would never be used to describe me but on this particular day, I’m like Dora the Explorer skimming the ads and hunting for the best deals. Usually by the time its dinner time on Thanksgiving, I have my intentions mapped out and what merchandise I will be purchasing.
One night, a couple years ago, I found an ad offering a very respectable laptop at a very consumer friendly price. As my mom told me about what I have just explained to you, you better believe I went down to Office Depot at around 8 o’clock on Thanksgiving night to claim my computer. I packed all the essentials of a Black Friday excursion, hat, gloves, sleeping bag, extra blankets, hot cocoa, and my trusty iPod. To my surprise, I wasn’t the first in line but it didn’t damper my hopes. Those in front of me were a group of dare-devil women and what appeared to be an Eskimo who was obviously neighbors with Santa. This mammoth of a man was sitting Indian style eating an ice cream cone in shorts singing tribal songs in an unknown language. (True Story)
I never could have expected what happened next.
I don’t understand how I had the guts to face the brutal cold that night but I’m glad I did. I haven’t had more fun in one night since that night. Throughout the hours of darkness, crowds of people started arriving and it was easy to see I was the inexperienced one here even though I had spot number six in line. I had to prove my worth among shopping’s elite. Harder than any competition I’ve ever been in, I had to compete for respect among the most experienced shoppers West St. Louis had to offer.
Before I go any further I should mention that a place near my home in St. Louis, has what I believe is the biggest strip mall in America. (Again, my lack of basic shopping knowledge puts me at a disadvantage already) It stretches almost three miles and has every store you can think of. Since most of the bigger stores drew crowds, the number of people that arrived got to be pretty staggering. Best Buy, Target, Office Depot, Circuit City, Wal-Mart, Radio Shack, and many more. The crowd was so big and the weather was so cold, people started driving up and down the strip mall selling coffee or hot chocolate and were making a killing. To those who were doing this I applaud you, I should have thought of that. I would place them in the businessmen elite.
With the sheer number of people there and a whole parking lot of space (you could leave your spot in line if you left your sleeping bag/lawn chair there. Those were the rules. It was also in the rules that I could physically harm anyone who tried to pull a cutsy through the line. Some lady did just that and the cops were called and hell got even hotter because of it. Seriously, America? Fighting over places in line?) But anyway with the number of people it wasn’t hard to get a game of two-hand-touch football going. I called some of my buddies who were looking for an excuse to get away from after Thanksgiving dinner activities at their own homes and they came down and we had a great time. Afterwards we’d walk up and down the lines of different stores looking at other crazies/weirdos just like me, all eagerly waiting for the store to open. Some had built up tents and somehow hooked up TV’s inside with Xbox’s and Playstation’s. It was crazy but these allowed me to make a name for myself within the best of the best in St. Louis shopping. Now the early bird shopping club recognizes my HALO talents and two-handed-touch football skills with a new level of respect. Hey NFL, can I play quarterback on Sunday? (Ego check)
As the night wore on, the weather become colder, and I grew tired, I got restless and caught as much shut eye as possible in the freezing cold when I was awoken abruptly by a stir amongst the multitude of people. The stores didn’t apparently agree with my sleep schedule and started passing out vouchers for each product you wanted. I guess this proved effective and was done so, so there wasn’t a mad dash at the door. Once you got the voucher, they would reserve your product of choice until ten that morning. What really sucked was the two kids in line right behind me wanted laptops as well. The store had six vouchers for laptops (one voucher per person) and I received the 5th one. Those poor kids who waited all night now had to make a decision as to which one of them was going to get the computer for school. I thought their predicament was pretty humorous and I let them know about every 15 minutes for the next 2 hours before the store actually opened. I tried to lighten the mood by telling them about all the people who were behind them dumb enough to think they were going to get one as well but they were in heated arguments and I didn’t bother them again. (Never found out how they decided as once the store opened it was Hurricane Katrina all over again)
When those doors opened it was like the movie Jumonji or the Lion King all over again. (When you were little, who was a little spooked when they watched Jumonji? I was…) Once inside the store it was pure madness with people thinking they were slick by grabbing things just so other people couldn’t have them. What is it with the greedy people of the world? Since I had the voucher and I was 6th in line, I could take my precious time as I looked for an external hard drive to go along with my computer. I found the hard drives and grabbed two just in case. (Good gift idea, right? Haha not what I was thinking) I went to the counter and checked out and paid for my laptop and one external hard drive. Just as had expected, when I went back to where the hard drives were at, they were all gone. I looked around at the vultures surrounding me disappointed there were no hard drives. I tried to slyly put it on the shelf and I had not even released the box when someone grabbed it from me and took off like he stole it. I contemplated making a scene and yelling he stole it from me, (I was running low on sleep and getting annoyed by all these damn people) but decided against it and went home to try out my new computer. (Turned out to be an excellent purchase as I still have this computer it is the one I am typing on right now.)
So after all this, I just wanted to tell you I am bummed out I won’t be able to partake in this epic yearly event this season. Rumor has it that the basketball team here at Illinois doesn’t care about Thanksgiving as they are shipping us out to Las Vegas next week for a tournament. Let me drop some math on you. illogical judgment + lack of common sense = Las Vegas. If this is true what does, illogical judgment + lack of common sense + Las Vegas =? (I hope two incredibly decisive wins for the Orange and Blue) Other than that, I will be laying low in Champaign as the rest of society has left campus town to spend the holiday at home. Laying low = lots of blogging (based on probability and odds) so be prepared to be entertained.