The Monday after the Friday before
By now, everyone not fortunate enough to be out of the country on Black Friday – and you know who you are! – will have read about, heard about, or watched a video about the craziness, the over-the-top-iness, the consumer run amuck-iness, that prevailed in many parts of this great land o’ ours last Friday.
Oh, there was the “competitive shopper” at a California Walmart who pepper sprayed her rivals to keep them away from the X-Box and Wii games stash. (Technically, this incident occurred on Black Friday Eve, the holiday that once upon a time, in olden days, we called “Thanksgiving”.) She surrendered on Friday, and likely faces charges of assault. (Not assault to kill. Assault to shop, maybe? Assault with intent to purchase?)
The burning questions, of course: Did she get the discounted X-Box she was after? And does she get to keep her loot?
As for the particular games she that were on her list. Dance-Dance? Grand Theft Auto? Call of Duty?
My humble prediction: within the next year we’ll see one called Competitive Shopper. (If there isn’t one already….)
And forget about “Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer”. This years novelty Christmas tune will likely be “Grandpa Got a Leg Sweep from the Po-po.”
Once again, it was video games what really done it. As with the pepper spraying “competitive shopper”, video games were at the root of the case of the roughed-up Phoenix-area grandpa. He claimed he was just trying to save his grandson from being trampled by the mob, and tucked the video game under his shirt so he would be hands free. The cops claim shoplifting and resisting arrest. Unfortunately, the locals that an oh-so-alert Walmart employee whistled in tried to take grandpa down with a “leg sweep”. Alas, he landed on his head and wound up with a few stitches. Gosh, when I worked retail, shoplifters were just grabbed by the elbow and marched out. The world sure is going to hell in a Walmart shopping basket, ain’t it?
And, while we’re playing out the Walmart theme here, who didn’t love that YouTube of the Arkansas Walmart melee over the $2 waffle irons? Some people no doubt watched the film and thought, oh, how awful. (Oh-how-waffle! Get it?) But I thought it was a riot. Come on, what better way to cap of a holiday celebration than a bit of a revel in my Northeast, urban, latte-sucking, NPR-supporting, superiority-oozing, look-down-the-nose at, elitist snobbism? Admittedly, it would have looked like just any other garden-variety, $2 waffle iron, Walmart riot if it hadn’t been for the zaftig blonde sporting the twelve-inch plumber’s smile.
Of course, the Walmart Consumer Riots have become as much a kick-off of the holiday season as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and the Salvation Army bell-ringers.
What put a little twist into this year’s Black Friday meshugas was the stampede at a California Urban Outfitters.
We know it’s bad out there when cool urban hipsters (and their wannabes) start going nuts.
I mean flat-screen TV, X-Box, Wii. Bad behavior over the electronic goods of the hour are to be somewhat expected.
But what is it that would inspire mob behavior at an Urban Outfitters?
You’re not getting away with the last Angry Birds key caps, you rat bastard!
My BFF won’t make it through the winter without this über cool hat. Don’t make me video you and post it to YouTube! Just stand back and let me get through to the register!
Ah, the madness of crowds!