It really got rolling in our family the year money was really tight, and Flar took a look and realized the level of savings to be had on this one day, for the brave at heart. Since then, he's studied and listed and parceled out assignments and ads with circles and exes and all. This year, he declared no Black Friday as we walked away from the Healthy Back store with a receipt and a lighter checkbook. And the pickings looked lean. We lost a confederate to the day-before online offers. Brody concurred on the disappointing ads. But then, there were a few choice pieces.
So Flar and Critter bundled up - a little bit - took a book and chess set (did they start with a chair or two) and headed off to CompUSA. They called from the road to report. Gold. They were in line too late for the prized laptop voucher, but an enterprising soul parted with his for was it $5? Was it $10? Gaucha gets a shiny new laptop to replace her ailing (and old) desktop this year. They were heading over to Best Buy. ... They had a spot before Office Depot! And the line hasn't even compressed yet.
Flar came home for the tent. The sleeping bags, a blanket. Some pillows. A pad. (I know they picked up one chair, at least.) I sent soup and cocoa and best wishes. I promised support. He predicted 3am.
At 12:50am, I got the first call. Bring leg warmers, Mom, my ankles are cold. These pants are already too short. Bring a scarf Mom, thanks. When I arrived, he was there on the curb. Then he disappeared. He popped back up, and this other man, kind stranger, crawled under my car. Seems that mysterious dragging noise was my splash guard. A thingy that keeps road splash away from the engine. He didn't merely identify it, he tightened it up -- no scraping on my trip back home.
The thing you might not know. If you've never stood in the overnight lines? There's a quietly festive mood. We are not in competition with each other. We are all gaming together against the store. Play the game, save the money, bring home Christmas. (Insert your celebration name ← there.) Bring entertainment, but meet your fellow gamers in the line. People who never shop (meet Flar) participate in the One Big Day. People drive in from out of town, when you live in a small state like Kentucky where the stores oft serve largish areas. "What're you buying? I'm hoping for a camera, a laptop, a new TV."
So, the guy in the line? "Mom, he's nice." Critter gave him the hand warmers I found, and brought as a surprise. they're both dressed warmly, and it's a warm year. As they go. No snow - yet.
Oh, and as I drove away? "GameStop has 15 Wiis and they open at 7." By then, we'll know if Best Buy had any. Methinks I may have a stop on my way to my Life Group meeting.
Happy Black Friday everyone! I'm gonna go warm up my cocoa and do some more reading.