Black Friday–It’s Only Stuff

Heres our trunk full of presents!
Here's our trunk full of presents!

It’s no secret that Black Friday is my favorite shopping day of the year.  I love the excitement in the air, the conversations with random shoppers while waiting in lines, and nabbing some great deals from $2 DVD’s at Walmart (as well as a couple $6 and $9 ones for gifts) to my massive purchase of yarn at Michael’s crafts.  Plus, it’s the one day of the year you can go shopping in your pajama pants and no one cares.  No one is awake to care about their hair or make-up or appearance.  I love it!  I go shopping and I don’t feel pressured to slap random color-enhancing ingredients all over my face!

Except for my time at Kohl’s, which had long lines, but extremely pleasant workers (and customers), the lines weren’t bad at all.  I was pleasantly surprised!

After the Thanksgiving I had, I needed a sweet release.  As I blogged earlier in the month, I had planned to stay home with my best friend (she’s also my roomie) and we were gonna do our own thing.  We perused through the Black Friday ads, sang out hearts on the “American Idol Karaoke” game for Playstation 2, and we ate to our heart’s content.  It was a good day…for the most part.  Of course, other family members were dealing with the consequences of their choices and trying to pull me into their emotional toil.  Sigh.  I’d love to make it through a holiday unscathed by drama.  Details are not needed, suffice to say, I was feeling pretty darn upset.

We left at 4:30 AM and returned home at 2 PM–it was a long day.  But we did have brunch with my mother and did a bit of shopping with her.  A good time was had by all…well, except at Target, which was full of obnoxious people clawing at $6 DVD’s.  I thought, “Go to Walmart.  They’re $2 there!”

Upon entering the apartment, I was greeted by some enthusiastic puppies who wanted to sniff and inspect every single bag that Sarah and I carried in.  We sat down, flipped on the TV, and watched Fox News in a zoned-out sort of manner.

However, the first story was about a stampede of wild shoppers who tramped a Walmart employee to death after breaking through the front doors at 4:55 AM because apparently they couldn’t wait any longer.  Other people were trampled upon and injured in the ruckus.   The employee, 34 year-old Jdimytai Damour, lie on the floor dying as shoppers rushed past eager to get their bargains.  While some, perhaps many, shoppers were probably unaware of Mr. Damour’s condition, it sickens me to think about folks buying $2 DVD’s or a cheaper Wii while Damour lie there dying because he was trampled by the unruly crowd (full story).  I’ll take a man’s life over $2 DVD’s any day.  As my best friend put it, “Really!  It’s just stuff.”  It is just stuff.

Another incident happened in Cali.  where there was scatty details about a shooting inside a Toys R Us.  I mean, of all places to have an altercation, why not pick a giant toy store?  Two people are dead and details are scatty at this point.  But whatever the case, Black Friday shopping should be not cause death by trampling or murder.

As I looked at the purchases I bought for my loved ones, I felt so sad.  I couldn’t help but think of the families who had to witness these events and of course, of the victims themselves.  A fun shopping day shot to hell by a bunch of people who care more about a bargain that a human life.   I’ll go Black Friday shopping again next year and the next year, and probably for many more years, but I’ll be careful not to get caught in the stampede.

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