Friday, November 23, 2007

Let's talk about "Black Friday"

Well it came and went with a flurry. I'm talking about Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving that is by FAR the biggest, most hugesest (lol...that is MY word) day of the year for retail. Some of you may know about my recent job situation with my full time job. Being fired from there left me with my Part time job at, of all places, Best Buy! Needless to say, I worked 12 hours today.

It all started out innocently enough. 3:30 am wake up call from my stupid alarm clock that I hate and hated even more at 3:30 this morning for waking me up! Shower and get dressed to meet the masses. Now, I am about to experience my very first Black Friday of ANY kind because I refuse to shop on that day on principle.

Anyway, I get to the store and we are instructed to park in Home Depot's lot. Home depot is about a half mile away. We had to walk...WALK! WALK I said! Well, me and walking don't get along in the daytime, much less at 4 am. But I walk. And I'm steaming when I get to the door and lo and behold there are at LEAST 1000 people lined up in front. This is about to become one interesting day!

Five am. Doors open and I'm standing in the back at the computers where I work and this mass of people come storming in the store like they are taking the Beaches of Normandy. I swear I thought I saw bayonets. The sea of sweaty, smelly human beings all rush the computer section to get their grubby hands on one of the sixteen eMachine packages that we were selling for 199.00. Needless to say, chaos ensued when two hundred sleep deprived people with smelly breath started fighting for one of the sixteen that we had. Yeah. Police were called. Calm got restored. I never stopped moving all day long.

Twelve hours, doing nothing but directing traffic.

"Where are the iPods?"

"They are that way ma'am".

"Do you have any of the two hundred dollar computers left?"

"Nope, it's noon, sir. Those were gone at 5:03."

"What do you mean they are gone? This is false advertising. I'm gong to sue"

"No problem sir, that line starts back there."

On and on this went for twelve of the most grueling, but fun hours of my life! I wouldn't take anything back, except for the fact that I was told to go to "Lunch" at 9:45 this morning. I get in the hub (that is Best Buy for break room) and find that lunch consists of 4 chicken nuggets from Chic-Fil-A. They ate ALL of them and left our team FOUR nuggets. Our team has SIX people on it. YOU do the math. Needless to say, i was NOT a happy camper after that. As a consolation, the managers DID come around with a bowl of Tootsie Rolls for us. Limit four per person.

Now, I'm hungry. I'm going to get a Turkey sandwich! More later, Folks.


Matthew said...

Black Friday was the reason I quit working retail when I was 18 (I didn't like working 8 hours without a break while getting yelled at because I wasn't doing my job well enough). Good luck surviving the Xmas season.

Pete said...

I adored Black Fridays, when I used to work retail. I love the crowds and the press of the people and the frantic adrenaline rush that you get when you're trying not to get trampled (or eaten) and the constant movement. Only day I wasn't bored. I've worked six Black Fridays in a row; this year was the first year I haven't.

All told, being a full-time writer is better. While everyone else lined up, or worked, I wrote and considered wearing pants. :-D

wordsmith said...

Jerry, what a crazy experience! I did LMAO at "Storming the Beaches of Normandy." I worked retail long ago...never on Black Friday, thankfully, but after Christmas is almost as bad. After the explanation of the "lunch" situation (hardly fair labor practices LOL) I now understand why sales people can be a bit out of it...not only are you guys sleep deprived but starved as well. Great post!

Teige Benson said...

I have great empathy for those who have to work retail - especially on days like that.

Heck, I won't even shop in those situations. I can't imagine having to work in them.

Way to pull through though - now, take a break!

Jerry Allen said...

Matthew - Thanks! And welcome to my blog. please check back often!

Pete - It WAS a ruch, very fun, and the adrenaline did flow. If I had my choice, though, I would have been writing (and considering wearing pants!).

Wordsmith - What a day it was! Tired, hungry, cranky all at once. I cant wait till next year!

Teige - Im with you man...I refuse to shop on BF on principle. Not gonna brave that mass of people for nothing in the world...well, maybe if my little girl REALLY wanted something and I HAD to do it...otherwise, no.

Virginia Lee said...

You see, that's why I shop from my computer.


Tell whatever part of NC you're in 'hello' for me, please. I've only seen RDU, Rex Hospital, freeways, and parts of Durham since I've been back. And really, downtown Durham is just NOT my NC.

neoauteur said...

I bought a 50" LCD TV for a very low price on Black Friday. I'll do it again next year.

Dawn Allcot said...

Hysterical!! Great post!!

I did a whole series of "retail working" posts back on

Miraculously, we've always gone away for Thanksgiving, so I've gotten Black Friday off. I request it in, like, January and pull the whole, "Our family is out of state, no parents here..." thing. It is the only time I use the "orphan card." LOL

Kudos for surviving it!