Two years ago, I plunged into the Black Friday stampede for the first time at Wal-Mart for an HP laptop. To my surprise, it was quite a languorous night as shoppers civilly lined up at the respective registers for the 5 am chime. Two years later, different Wal-mart, different prize, and a totally different experience.
1:00 am – Returned home from parents’ house with belly stuffed (5 glasses of wine and still no buzz, what the hell is wrong with me?)
2:00 am – After much debate, the girls resolved to march onto Wal-mart to brave the Battle of Black Friday. I decided to stay home and get rested
3:15 am – Received the call for backup. Learned that there are no lines, no formations, no orders, just barbaric rumble with wide-mouthed, thick-thighed, big-bottomed gorillas.
3:30 am – Sacrificed my slumber to rescue the damsels in distress. How was I to sleep knowing that my girl is being heckled?
4:00 – 4:50 am – Surrounded by the multitude, all prying the coveted prize in the middle of the aisle. “The first one is mine,” claimed one woman. “I’ll take the second,” shouted a man. “I got the third one,” I rebutted. Other exchanges were heard, “Don’t you take the 4th,” “I’ve been here since 12,” “You better put your hands on it.” The first woman proceeded to write our names on each box to prematurely seize the items.
4:55 am – “I think you’ve waited long enough,” the manager declared over the PA. While others rushed, I took my time since I already had my name and my hands on the box. I even took the initiative to help an elderly man with his before securing mine.
5:00 am – “862.31, credit or debit?” And I was out the door. The final tally? A 42″ HDTV, 2 Sony Cybershots, a sewing machine, and various household appliances.
7:15 am – Fast asleep, with the REAL prize in my arms.