Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It Was a Dark, Cold Night

My alarm went off way too early at 2:35 in the morning. I dragged myself out of bed and brushed my teeth. On went layer upon layer of warm clothing. Big, puffy down coat? Check. Hats, gloves, scarf? Check.

I looked like Ralphie from the Christmas Story. I couldn’t put my arms down.

I threw a few boxes of raisins in my purse and went out into the night with a caffeine-laded Coke in my hand.

Easing into the parking lot, I saw just a handful of cars. My heart skipped a beat and I thought, “I might get that TV after all!” Yes, Target had an awesome deal on a HDTV and I was getting sucked into this Black Friday madness for the very first time. As I made my way through the plaza, I realized that the parking lot was full on the other side of the store. Crap!

45 minutes later, at exactly 4 in the morning, the doors opened and slight panic set in. I wanted to run (and so did everyone else---I could tell!) but the security had made it very clear that if anyone ran, pushed or hassled anyone else, they would be leaving the store. In the cop car out front. So I walked really, really fast.

A man passed me with the huge TV shoved into his cart. “Where did you find that?!” I asked. “Over there in the ladies department,” he said. Huh? Tricky, tricky, Target. I hustled over to the ladies department only to find great big stacks of . . . . . . .nothing.

There were a lot of us standing around for a few minutes. We didn’t quite know what to do with ourselves. This is what we all wanted. This is what we all came for! What do you mean there are no TVs left?!?!?!

We were dazed. And confused.

Finally, as if we were told to go home after a party got broken up or something, we all kind of went off into different directions. The time? 4:02 am.

I half-heartedly threw some stuff in my cart like it was some kind of consolation prize and checked out. Truthfully, I’ll be returning most of it tonight.

Bummer. No big huge HDTV for me.

Couple of things that I take away from this experience:
1.) If you need a new tent or some nice camping chairs, you will find them abandoned in front of the store as soon as the doors open.
2.) Get there even earlier than you can imagine.

3.) Now that the excitement of Black Friday is over, I can honestly say that I don’t think there is anything in this world that would make me want to shop on Black Friday again.

4.) I’m pitching that someone in Hollywood needs to come out with a movie about shopping on Black Friday. Preferably a romantic comedy. Preferably with Jake Gyllenhaal as the male lead.

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