November 28, 2011

How far would you go?


  •     We all have our priorities.  We know what we want and what we will do for it.  If our child needs a kidney we're the first to be tested.  As newlyweds scrimping for that first down payment on a starter house may opt for hamburger instead of steak.  Choosing to drive a 10 year old car instead of a new one so our kids can be in private school.  These are priorities and their sacrifices make sense.
    In a different note how many of us camped overnight for concert tickets (before ticket master LOL)?  Took an afternoon nap so we could attend the midnight premiere of a certain movie?  The sacrifices we made for each of those events became part of the memory and probably enhanced it as well.
         We had to drop my laptop off at Best Buy this Monday.  Much to my surprise outside the store there were two tents set up.  I really didn't pay attention and thought maybe they were getting into camping gear ~ oh can I be clueless.  Imagine my surprise when the Store Manager informed us that in fact those tents belonged to people who were camping out for the Black Friday Specials.  They had arrived early Sunday morning and had their tents set up before the store even opened!!
         Now before I entertain you with my glorious banter on the subject I have be honest and come clean on this subject.  Just about two months ago a new Buffalo Wild Wings opened up in town.  We had one for years that we loved, it closed quite unexpectedly so the boys were extremely excited when they learned the franchise was returning.  Then IT was posted.  The first 100 customers would receive free wings for a year!!  The store was opening on a Monday morning and Patrick convinced Michael to take work off so the two of them could sit out the night before.  I have to tell you what an incredible time that night was.  The boys arrived around 6pm and by 8pm the parking lot resembled a tailgating party. There were groups who had tents and were playing games.  The restaurant hosted contests.  They allowed the brave folks who spent the night to hang out on their porch and they even had the TV's turned on; a couple of groups had brought gaming systems and plugged them into the TVs. To be fair to those who were spending the night BWW had a system, with no determined frequency they would walk around and pass out sticker, thus avoiding a mad rush to the door.  You can imagine the disappointment when people were showing up at 7am sitting outside the front door only to discover that they were not going to qualify for the free wings.  At 9:30 they started organizing the 500+ people by the number of stickers they had collected.  There was no "I need a sticker for Tom he's not here right now", you had to be there to get your own sticker every time they were passed out.  When the doors finally opened in order to win the wings you had to have 13 stickers, Buffalo's gave out 125 coupon books. For the next year we have 2 coupon books that entitle us to a total of 12 free wings each and every week.  When the boys present their coupons they make sure the waitress knows they earned those wings!!
         Did Patrick miss a day of school, yes!  Did Michael use a Vacation Day, yes!  If they had to do it again would they~ most definitely.  It turned into a fun family time with Meg and I delivering food and moral support over the 16 hours they were there.  16 hours not 120 hours.
        I understand that Black Friday Deals are pretty great.  But what material object is actually worth 5 days of living in a tent on a sidewalk?  How do you explain to your family why you're not at Thanksgiving Dinner?  "I'm sorry we won't be at dinner this year Granny but we really want to buy our family that flat screen TV. Please save us some stuffing and drop it by Best Buy when you get a chance."  How many people do you foresee climbing out of that tent Friday?

    ***Well due to some clueless error on my part this glorious rant didn't get posted last week as I had planned. So here are some updates on the "success" of Black Friday:
    At Various Wal-marts:
    • 20 people (including children ~ who brings their kids!!!) were pepper sprayed so a woman could gain an advantage getting a discounted X-Box
    • fights broke out leading to arrests over discounted cell phones
    • various locations reported people fighting off would be robbers after making their purchases
    • police had to use a stun gun to break up a fight over video games
    • more proud Wal-mart stories
         While other stores reported similar problems this is the most heartbreaking:
    While shopping at a Target store in West Virginia a 61 year old man collapsed and witnesses report that other shoppers not only ignored the fallen man but stepped over him as well! According the the article posted by Huffington Post there were witnesses who actually said "  While granted there is absolutely no legal obligation that requires you to sacrifice the discounted TV you were hoping to but there certainly is a moral one.  The victim’s wife did report that nurses shopping did come to his husband's aid ~ thank heaven for these dedicated few.  Despite attempts the man later died at the hospital.
        On the flip side the abuse exhausted employees endure is beyond belief.  Is it any wonder an exhausted Target employee lost control of her car crashed into a canal and nearly drowned.

    How far are we willing to go as a nation?

5 comments:

  1. I so agree with you on the Black Friday madness. I've always thought that there is no sale in the world good enough to make me wake up and go out at 4 AM. Every year when I see the stories about the fights and pushing and shoving and craziness, it just reaffirms my goal of sleeping late and enjoying a nice, lazy cup of coffee the next morning!

    (And...yeah? Who brings their kids?!!!)

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  2. Wow! Just......wow!
    I can't say that I've ever waited as long as all that for something. lol.
    I've waited a couple of hours to make sure I get in to see Harry Potter lol. Which is quite sad actually because I live in the Highlands and the cinema seats were never ever full as the population is so low.
    The fighting and pushing is just ridiculous and no kid should be put it that environment, not for anything!

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  3. We get similar queue mania every year just after Christmas for the Harrods sale. Bonkers!
    Only time I queued for hours was years ago to get tickets to see the magnificent Bob Dylan. Was worth the wait.

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  4. some of us canadians cross the border to shop on black friday, personally have not experience it. we have boxing day similar to black friday on Dec 26. The last time my hubby and i went, we fought! so never again and not worth it. thanks for the post!

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  5. This Is why I'm Glad I was at home that day, having hot chocolate with my son.

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