WEBSTER COUNTY, KY (11/28/12) – It's time for my First Annual Black Friday Awards, honoring or dishonoring the best and worst of America’s unofficial post Thanksgiving holiday. The day American consumers go from stuffing their faces with turkey to stuffing their houses with stuff they don’t need.
My National Worst of Black Friday Award goes to the unknown subject at a Tallahassee, Florida Walmart that opened fire on a man and woman over a parking spot dispute. The suspect fled and the victims were treated for non-life threatening injuries.
An honorable mention in the class goes to Anthony Perry of Massachusetts. Police found a 2-year-old boy abandoned in the back of his car in the parking lot of a Kmart in Springfield, Mass. The boy had been brought to the Kmart by his mother’s boyfriend, who bought a flat-screen television and somehow returned home with neither the boy nor his car. The boyfriend, Perry, claims that he lost track of the boy while shopping. He will be charged with reckless endangerment of a child.
My wife and I did our Black Friday, or Black Thursday, shopping in Owensboro. Overall it was not a bad trip, but there are a few people I feel deserve a mention. Let's start with the bad.
Most Overly Aggressive Shopper goes to a little old lady at Menards. A store employee was holding a sign that said “Line starts here” and had a big arrow on it. Of course this means a dozen or more people lined up in the wrong place and tried to cut ahead of the rest of us. As I started for the register this lady cut the line and rammed me with her cart. Not just once, but five or six times.
Worst Managing of a Sale goes to one of the large chain stores in Owensboro. I won't mention their name, but they had two big sales at 8:00 and 10:00. They had handed out all of the vouchers for the television at both sales by 7:30.
Most Vocal Shopper goes to a lady who was behind me at Walmart. As we attempted to make our way through the store at about 8:30, the isles were crammed with people waiting for the 10:00 sale, so there was just enough room for a cart. As we passed the pharmacy another lady stepped out of an isle into our path and just stood there. The lady behind me yelled, “Hey lady, what the $%&* are you doing? We’re trying to walk here.”
Best of Black Friday goes to the people I waited in line with at Sears. There were a dozen or so of us waiting on two different televisions and some tablets that went on sale at 4:00 a.m. The newspaper ad guaranteed at least four televisions per store. When they handed out vouchers, they only had three for the 50’’ television. The store told the guys who were fourth in line they didn’t get one because they had over sold at the earlier sale. The people we were with spoke up in support of those gentlemen, and eventually the store gave them an upgrade.
If you have never been Black Friday shopping, let me offer some advice. If you are planning to go and actually shop, don’t bother. The peak sale hours are best if you’re going to buy one big item. Go, stand in line and try to get what you came after. If you’re going to shop around, wait and go in the morning after everything has calmed down.
What I’m Reading
I’ve actually been given an exciting opportunity. Patrick Scalisi, editor of the horror anthology The Ghost IS the Machine in which one of my stories was published, has offered me the chance to read his latest novel before it goes to the publisher.
The book is named The Lamplighters. It is a paranormal/urban fantasy set in New Haven, Conn., about a secret society that investigates paranormal/supernatural activity for the city government. When a drunk driver knocks over an ancient tree on the Yale campus, he unleashes a demon that begins terrorizing New Haven, and the Lamplighters are the only ones who can stop it.
J-E News Editor
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