Forgive me that this blog update comes so late. I think it takes me quite a long time to process the insane day of Black Friday. Every single year, it is the beloved tradition of my sister, myself and our dear friend Anissa to embark on the dangerous adventure of shopping on the most ridiculous day in America.
While we’d like to congratulate ourselves on helping to rebuild the economy, the truth is, I think we really go for the stories and for the delirious laughter that hits after about eight hours of non-stop shopping. This year was no different, only that the crazy mission began at 9:45 p.m. on thanksgiving night.
Jordan and I started out at Wal-Mart, the one place I will never again grace with my presence on a sale day. I have never in my born days seen such a crowd and I should’ve known better than to go to the one store in my hometown, but we couldn’t resist. First of all, the place had no organization. Rather than starting their sale at 10 pm like they advertised, they started at 9:30, therefore we were quite behind when we arrived. My particularly favorite event of that outing was the old woman who wearily pushed her buggy through the aisles yelling “Heaven help us, it is hell down here!”
The day continued with long lines in the freezing cold weather where we encountered others who voiced the inevitable question that strikes you at 2 am; “why on earth am I doing this?” The three of us, along with a line of strangers finally established that Black Friday is a sport, Americans love competing just to see who can knock someone out faster than the guy behind them. The prize? A tv or a dvd player and that ever beaming American pride.
My favorite though is our friend Anissa, who bless her has the genes of a robot. That girl can shop like I can eat chocolate. It is absolutely one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen. My aching feet shout for joy when 12:00 pm comes and we can finally sit down long enough to consume lunch.
What I find hilarious is that this year both Jordan and I had to leave and go take naps in the car. We literally could not go any further. We are not as young as we once were. I think it was the outrageous rampage of women that invaded Belk for their $20 shoe sale. Every pair of boots was $20. Everyone was found carrying anywhere from 6-9 boxes of shoes at once as each tried to strategically swerve through the stampede of screaming women who were yelling out random numbers that I now assume were their shoe sizes. I spent twenty minutes trying to find Jordan and Anissa in the crowd, and in the midst was met by an elderly man who smiled at me and said “I didn’t know so many people were burrfoot (the redneck way to say barefoot).”Anyway, my favorite were the claustrophobic nutcases who got in the middle of the riot and then decided to yell “OH MY GAH, I GOTTA GET OUT OF HERE! I AM SO CLAUSTROPHOBIC!” Why then, I ask, would you go shopping on the most crowded day of the year? Well, as you know, we can’t tell kids who stink at soccer that they can’t be on the team anymore… just like we can’t tell incompetent shoppers they’re not allowed to get in on the black friday game. Everyone is a winner thanks to the public school systems.
Hollister, the store that you both need a flashlight, earplugs and a Bible to enter, was probably the most traumatic experience for me. It was the hour long standing in line that made me frustrated to start, but by the end when I wearily reached the counter, it was the jaw dropping question that really disturbed me most. A woman behind us pointed to Anissa (who is 23) and asked if she my mother! I had to turn away and laugh and then I felt completely appalled. Was the insult toward Anissa? Was it towards me? Should we both be concerned about our appearances? Did I look eight? Did she look thirty-nine? Or was the woman asking a picture of what we would be like if we tried to shop at the age of 65 on black friday with no sleep. I hope I never get that blind or delirious on a shopping experience, if so, put me on house arrest.
It was when I reached Sears that I nearly fell asleep on their comfy blue couch. Jordan, poor dear, had already semi fallen asleep sitting up in The Shoe Dept. I finally got to rest my legs for ten minutes while Jordan and Anissa waited in line at Sears and I found myself watching blurry eyed as a woman who seemed more exhausted than anyone I’d seen tried so desperately to sit on the couch across from me. Unfortunately, she was hindered by the fact that her bum was intercepted by a pesky arm rest and she and her five billion bags went tumbling sideways onto the sofa. I wanted to help her, I did, but I couldn’t lift myself from my couch and I knew if I got any closer I would fall on top of her laughing. I didn’t think that would be appropriate. I then began to pray that I would not ever go in public if I became incapable of knowing how to properly sit on a common piece of furniture.
So, as always, we survived the black friday shopping extravaganza. The deals were not that great, the crowds were unruly and the best part of my day was when I got to fall into bed at 6 p.m. that night. I love my girls and I love our tradition, without it, my life would be far less exciting… but I am always happy when black friday comes to an end and I get to breathe a sigh of relief that I have 365 days to recover.