I love that the one holiday we have built 100% around being thankful is followed by a day built 100% around consumerism – Black Friday. Despite this alleged recession, the stores I saw were brimming with people and credit cards.
I don't know if you can see it very well, but this is a shot of about 10 dudes just hanging out in front of Jeremy's, waiting patiently for their girlfriends to get finished clawing some other girl's eyes out over a discount Marc Jacobs overcoat and standing in line for over an hour to check out.
This is Emily, after having clawed some girl's eyes out over a tee-shirt. She still had to stand in line for another 30 minutes.
Years ago I swore to never enter a mall on Black Friday if I could help it, regardless of the sales and slashed prices they try to entice me in with. This year I decided to make a tiny exception – my neighborhood Thrift Town was opening an hour early and offering $5 off to the first 100 customers in line. This is awesome, because $5 can buy you a lot at a thrift store, and I don't really put thrift stores in the same category as mall shopping at all.
Of course, when Emily and I showed up bright and early on Friday morning, this is what we saw:
What? A line around the block for Thrift Town? No one stands around the block for Thrift Town. All it took to turn my favorite thrift store- which is normally a very casual shopping experience- into a frenzied mess worthy of Black Friday was a $5 gift card. There were people elbowing in front of one another at 7:45 am, and once we were inside, dresses were being ripped off racks and the line for the dressing room was longer than I have ever seen it. I blame the free gift card.
To top the day off, Emily and I were standing in line to check out, when a woman grabbed for the large roll of gold wrapping paper in Emily's hands, and accused her of having stolen the paper from out of her cart. We were totally baffled – we had been walking around the store with that paper for at least 20 minutes, and had certainly not intentionally taken it from anyone, but the woman stood there yelling “How DARE you” at the top of her lungs until she had wrenched it from Emily's hands and walked back to her shopping cart.
Aside from that incident, we escaped mostly unscathed and with a few treasures of our own to show for it, but I have yet again resolved to never go shopping on Black Friday. No slashed prices are worth that kind of crazy.