This is Epth Nation

Epth is a state of mind, not a place. Reading this will give you a virtual drivers license in that state, but you'll still need to be 21 to purchase alcohol. And you can't get any there anyway, so stop asking.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

It's Hard to Know Where to Start, Part 3: White Man's Friday

The Friday after Thanksgiving has gotten totally out of hand, shopping-wise. It never seemed this way when I was growing up -- but then again, I wasn't an adult USA woman back then. I'm not one now, either, but I do have the misfortune of working in a consumer electronics store. Therefore, I get to see the madness up close every year, even though I'm the last person who would actually do any shopping on the day after thanksgiving. It's crazy out there! I can't think of a deal that would make me show up at Wal-Mart at 5am and risk getting trampled. Ok, maybe a David Foster Wallace book signing, but only if it's at the one near my home. Why he would be doing a book signing at Wal-Mart I have no idea, but I'd have to at least consider braving that scene if he were there.

(I made that reference because of this book, which comes out Dec. 13. I simply must own it.)

Anyway, like I said, I work at a consumer electronics store. This year, CE retailers have slashed prices to abominable and unheard-of levels in an effort to kill me. That's the only way I can explain away their acceptance of things like massive theft, customer fights, and a Walmart-ian 3% margin. The day stunk, as you might well expect. I spent almost my entire time there taking credit card applications from people, and then later handing them their papers of judgment which indicated whether or not they had been "instantly approved" ("instantly" meaning, in credit-card company speak," within 30 minutes"). I actually helped out a lot, and the store gave great customer service, considering how busy we were.

(of course, I wasn't able to do my actual job at all that day, but I guess all the stuff I've been doing the last 4 years isn't really important after all. The stuff I hate to do, whatever that might be, is the stuff that gets priority.)

The best part of Black Friday is the fights, no doubt about that. There was a line-fight (a fight about who was first in line) that I almost had to break up. Put it this way, there was talk of "going outside." People are so funny. A couple of minutes later, the guy who wanted to go outside told the other guy that he was sorry and they shook hands. They were still totally mad at each other, though.

The second fight that day I didn't actually see, but I hear it went like this: A lady cuts in line by her friend, the guy behind them takes exception, the lady tells him to not care, the man grabs the woman's arm and starts to physically pull her behind him, the cops step in and are like, "woah, there, buckuh," and they make the lady go to the back of the line. Having cops at the front entrance was a really good idea -- it couldn't have come from someone at this store.

As for all my other Black Friday exploits, are they not written in the Annals of...well, nothing, because they're boring? Yes, they are written in nothingness forever. All those precious wasted years -- who will pay?


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