i always wondered how shopko stays in business. i really did. it seemed like no one ever went there. but now i understand. shopko makes ALL their money on black friday.
so on thanksgiving i scoured the ads that came in the paper to see if there were any good sales that i wanted to get in on. i was already planning on going to the mall because one of the stores had an AMAZING deal on one of the things my older sister wants for christmas. i also needed ideas because my dad is impossible to shop for. when asked what he wants for christmas (or his birthday as they are both in december which makes shopping for him twice as difficult) he says nothing. nothing. after pressing him for weeks he finally said, "well...you could get some food storage." lame. lame lame lame lame LAME. food storage as a gift? get real. [on a side and completely unrelated note: another really lame gift that i've seen some people give is cigarettes. i mean, come on. it's like giving someone a little box of cancer.] so anyway, we saw something that might work for my dad at menards which opened at 5am. this is not as early as a lot of other stores that opened at 4am and so my older sister, my youngest sister and i agreed to wake up and leave the house at 5am.
now i have never EVER gone shopping on black friday before. i never thought it was worth it at all. if something normally costs thirty bucks and is on sale for fifteen, i'd rather pay the fifteen more dollars than get up at 4am. i also always thought that the people who did get up were crazy. crazy like insane, not crazy like funny. but this year i am hoping to spend a record low amount on christmas gifts. not because i'm cheap...because i'm poor. actually those might be the same thing. but also i'm not really doing anything else, so why not? we woke up, got in the car and left at 5:15am. it was still pitch black outside but the roads were busy. very busy. theres a road here that has target, shopko, menards, kohl's, and walmart (in that order) with some other stores in between them. it was CRAZY. there were no parking in the shopko parking lot AT ALL. people were parking and walking quite aways to get there. so we were surprised when menard's parking lot was pretty empty. there was also a really long line of crazies waiting to get into the store. it was bitterly cold outside and this is something i can say i will never do, no matter how good the deal. it's not worth frostbite. i looked at the ad again and realized that menards didn't actually open until six. oops. so we drove to the mall and shopped there before returning to menards.
menards was insane. the lines went all the way to the very back of their HUGE warehouse. no one would let us pass, it took us ten minutes just to get OUT of the store, and we didn't even get what we wanted. it was there, but it wasn't worth it. by the looks of it, shopko and walmart were the same way. however, the mall was totally cool. there were hundreds of people there, but there was still decent parking and the lines moved fast. the longest we had to wait in line was 5 minutes. the people weren't acting like psychos and everyone was polite and decent. and i saved a lot of money. i'd figure out how much i saved but that would require effort. i think the people at the mall were really there because they thought the craziness of shopping on black friday was fun. there were people wearing black friday t-shirts and everything. and people were actually smiling.
afterwards we came home and turned on While You Were Sleeping and fell asleep on the couch. it actually turned out to be a pretty fun day. next year i might even go back to the mall. but i'm staying away from anyplace else. those other places just aren't worth it. i guess nothing's really worth it if you're not having fun.