Just like I promised, the events that took place on Black Friday did anything, but disappoint. From two fist fights, to a screaming match, to a little old man pinned to a pile of waffle irons, to an arrest outside of Target, to sleeping outside of Belk the Cantrell Black Friday had it all.
The fateful night began at 9 pm as Madre Cantrell and I arrived at Super Wal-Mart to await the 10 o’clock season opening. I took my position near the waffle iron/mini chopper pile, while mother took hers near the Tupperware section. The great thing about Black Friday in our family is that we never NEED the items we are looking to buy, but I mean really who can pass up a $2.84 waffle iron?!
Digression-Since my family has chosen to forego gift giving and instead take a surprise trip for the past few years, Christmas gifts have not been given in my family for quite sometime. This year is a bit different because instead of a surprise trip the family is travelling in the Spring to visit me in Liechtenstein for Easter Break. Since this is the case, this year there will be gifts; however, one per person doesn’t exactly justify Black Friday shopping so we decided to adopt a woman from the Center for Nonviolence and focus our Black Friday mission on her.
Return to story -With mother in her position and I in mine, as the clock slowly approached 10 the store became more and more crowded. I had helped divulge a plan with the women around me, and when the madness began they would get the items and pass them back to me where I would throw them into the buggy to be distributed later. At about 5 till…the world (or so those around the pile of waffle irons thought) came to a standstill. A woman slowly pushed her buggy down a nearby aisle with the sale Tupperware in tow, a loud thud soon followed, which apparently signaled to everyone that it was time to go! Before I knew it there was a furry of fists and women were leaping every which way. The little old man who I had befriended wound up pinned to the pile of waffle irons, and was laughing hysterically at his misfortune. Well of course this made me begin to laugh, and as mother approached with Tupperware in tow she began to laugh as well. Let me just tell you when my mom begins to laugh it doesn’t stop until oh about 30 minutes later! So the little old man was laughing, I was laughing, mother was laughing and Black Friday fury was raging all around us.
Word to the wise-the only way one can truly enjoy Black Friday is if you can laugh at the mayhem that surrounds you.
Two fist fights and one screaming match later (both were observed, I did not participate), and one long Wal-Mart story short, my mother and I emerged victorious with one $2.84 waffle iron one $2.84 mini chopper, Tupperware, and 4 $1.96 DVDs.
After departing Wal-Mart we quickly relocated to Target, and boy was this a mistake. I had thought we had experienced madness in Wal-Mart well let me just tell you Wal-Mart mayhem didn’t hold a candle to Target mayhem. The line wrapped around the ENTIRE building, and while mother and I are no stranger to lines, this line was just a bit extreme for us. We decided to wait in the car, after all at midnight who/what was going to stop everyone from just crowding the doors and entering? We camped out in the car for an hour or two, and around 11:50 we headed to await the midnight rush to the doors. Well there was in fact something to stop people from rushing the doors, and that something just happened to be 5 rather large security guards that were adequately educating the crowd that if they tried to rush the doors, they would in fact stop them, and that we could only enter after the entire line had. Seeing as most of the people had been waiting since 4:00 that afternoon his announcement seemed reasonable so most of the crowd complied and decided to patiently wait our turn. Key word MOST. There were a few lone rangers that decided to take matters into their own hands and force their way through security and through the line. Security did in fact stop them, the doors were shut, and the cops were called. Yes, the cops were called to stop people from pushing in line…ARE WE IN KINDERGARTEN AGAIN??? Again, long story short, people were arrested, Target was too much to handle and mother and I left before even entering the store. There is just no sense in that amount of hostility!
After evacuating Target, mother and I headed to await the Belk store opening where the first 200 people would receive free store gift cards valued from $5-$1000. I actually won $100 last year…this year I won $5, but hey five dollars is five dollars right?! We were about…fifth in line with two hours ago, so I put to use a skill I have acquired at Millsaps in order to pass the time: falling asleep anywhere at anytime. Yes, I curled up and went to sleep on the cold hard concrete outside of Belk at 1 o’clock in the morning, I considered social suicide for a moment, but on Black Friday all judgements and potential embarrassment are thrown out the window.
I’ll save you the long boring details of the next few events, and skip to the part that after nearly eleven hours of shopping we returned home around 7am for a quick power nap. Around 1 o’clock Mama was ready to go again, and we departed for round two at the Outlet Mall in nearby Gulfport. Nothing too eventful happened this time around, except for the purchase of a $210 blazer for….$6.61. Yes. I AM that serious when it comes to shopping, come to Millsaps and I may teach you my ways.
While the day was indeed eventful, I was a bit disappointed at the media headlines that summarized the events. I completely understand, and even take thrill in midnight shopping and getting that “life changing deal”, but violence, rudeness, and simple inhumane actions are NEVER called for. I will now step off my soapbox…
Enjoy the official beginning of the Holiday Season, and while out shopping for those must have presents remember it isn’t officially a deal unless it is 75% off!
*Here is my standard “come to Millsaps it is the best college around” plug*