Friday, November 28, 2008

My First Black Friday Experience

For a few reasons I've never gone out on Black Friday to shop.  I mean, I might have been out and about, but I have never done my Christmas shopping on Black Friday.  In fact, I usually have 75% of my Christmas shopping done by Thanksgiving; I've been known to buy a Christmas gift or two around August.

This morning Sarah had to be at Staples at 5:30am (where she works) and is expecting a long hard day.  When we arrived at Staples there was already a line outside the door waiting for the doors to open.  From there I decided to go to Wal-Mart; Sarah said there was a game on sale for half price there that we both wanted (turned out it wasn't what we thought so I didn't get it).  The Wal-Mart parking is right beside its Sams Club, so the park lot is huge (easily 15 acres, but it wouldn't surprise me if someone said it was twice that).  The parking lot was full!  At 5:30-ish AM it was packed.  Cars were going all over waiting for someone to pull out (I was one of them).

Here's a few things I noticed once inside:
  1. There was probably 50 customers to every Wal-Mart employee.
  2. Every section had a crowd and at least two very long lines and many didn't seem to know what the lines were for (a frequent question I kept hearing).
  3. I saw two women grab, what I know is usually, a very expensive item because they thought the item was on sale, but admitted they didn't know how much the item was.
  4. I arrived about 40 minutes after Wal-Mart's sales started and all of their big discount items were already gone.
  5. I was surrounded by people pushing carts stuffed with items stacked higher than me.
  6. A lot of people were upset, angry, and really frustrated, but some seemed to be enjoying them self and didn't let the competition of finding the sale item get to them. 
  7. It took forever just to get around.
  8. Items on the shelves couldn't be clearly seen in many places because of the number of people.
  9. Lots of confusion, even among the employees.
I don't get why people go shopping on Black Friday.  I would rather pay a little more just to avoid crowds like that.

Are the deals that worth it?


Andy Lawrenson said...

When we were stocking our youth center in Oklahoma a YP friend and I went to the Black Friday sale at Wal Mart. We strategized. Each got a cart and literally ran through the store. We came out with a dvd player and 6 tv's and a huge stereo sound system. It was a blast being part of the competition that day and part of a team.

On a side note both our bedroom TV and living room TV are black friday specials. :)

TerryKM said...

Are the deals that good?

Roxanne said...

@Andy... didn't you take Burnie on a Black Friday spree at K-Mart the first year you moved to OBX? I remember the tv's!

Terry, I have also been the chauffeur for Sarah and Katie, going shopping when they were VERY young! I would take them to the Greenbrier Mall area and meet them every couple of hours at the car, to take them to the next shopping center. They would put on whatever they had bought since our last meet, IN THE BACKSEAT of my Thunderbird, no matter what it was!

jared said...

Dude I hate black friday - here's why -

I can't stand to see the greed that preceeds "christmas cheer"

Personally I wish they would close all stores for about a week after thanksgiving, just to give us greedy Americans some time to cool it. Like they closed downtown Greenville when we were in college.

I am sorry you had to see that today :)