Honest Timeline: Your First Black Friday Shopping Experience
Black Friday is a rite of passage for consumers. It’s a time-honored tradition that cuts Thanksgiving short, makes shoppers crazy, and gets us in massive amounts of credit card debt that we won’t be able to pay off until well into the new year. Since the pull of capitalism is so strong, eventually you’ll cave and decide to partake in the holiday retail frenzy. (There are a lot of great deals, after all.) If you dare to venture out on Black Friday this year, steel yourself mentally beforehand with our honest timeline. Be strong, gift buyers. And don’t forget to get a little something for yourself. You’ve earned it.
Cover Photo: hoozone (Getty Images)
5 AM: You pick up your partner in crime.
Bloated from last night's turkey feast, you head over to your shopping partner's house to pick her up. She's thought ahead, and is already well into a tall boy. If only you didn't have to drive, you'd be tanked along with her.
6 AM: Waiting in line.
You queued up with about 100 other insane people and are waiting for the store to open its doors. It's cold AF, but luckily you brought a puffer jacket and all the winter gear you could find in your closet so you can add layers as needed. A news reporter sees you and comes over for comment, which you totally fumble because you've never been on camera before. You do some signature dance moves to make up for it.
8 AM: The doors open.
You finally made it to opening time. Everyone sprints into the store like they're at the start of the marathon. Like a long-distance race, though, you have to pace yourself. This could take a while.
8:30 AM: The freak flags are flying.
You just wanted to save a little cash on your Christmas gifts, but some of the people here are really starting to freak you out. They yell and shake boxes and make weird gestures at each other. It's like someone dropped a bunch of cavemen into the heart of capitalism.
9 AM: Things get physical.
Supply is starting to dwindle as tempers rise. You finally find the toy your nephew wanted and have to make a dive for it, only to find that several other shoppers are doing the same thing. Only the strong will survive.
9:30 AM: Your shopping partner gets in a scuffle.
Your shopping partner and another shopper both grabbed the last pair of knee-high boots. So who gets them? You know you're supposed to defend her, but this seems like a silly purchase to potentially lose one's life over. Your boots were made for walking, not fighting.
10 AM: Complete chaos ensues.
Your shopping partner's boots scuffle has turned into a full-on riot. Chaos reigns. You decide to abandon her, pay for your nephew's toy, and the GTFO of here.
10:30 AM: You get the worst cashier in the world.
You wait to check out for a full 30 minutes. You'd think the cashiers would be efficient on retail's biggest day, but the one you get clearly has too much tryptophan in her system. She's slow to ring you up, checks and rechecks your $100 bill to ensure it isn't fake, then takes a bathroom break halfway through the transaction. You can't handle this anymore. You decide to give up. It's either that, or steal the toy, and you're not going to prison. You leave the toy at the register and decide to head out to your car, where you'll order the toy online and have it delivered.
10 PM: You wake up in a full-body cast.
You can't remember what happened after leaving the cash register, but your shopping partner informs you that the mob chased her out of the store, and when they saw her run towards your car, they attacked you and beat you with Barbie dolls. Now you'll be laid up for who knows how long.
Cyber Monday 8 AM: You take advantage of online sales.
On Cyber Monday, you use your only functional finger and your one good eye to go online to order your nephew's coveted toy. Unfortunately, it's on back order, and won't be available until 2020. That's it. You're canceling Christmas. Cash in an envelope it is.