M. Giant's
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Saturday, November 28, 2009  

Doorbusted

I'm not big on standing in lines. You know those lines outside of clubs that are supposed to make you think they must be so cool inside, if people are willing to wait outside to get in? All that does is make me think of all the other things I can do right now, without waiting in a line, and without being surrounded by people who are willing to wait in a line to get into a club. In fact, the longest line I ever stood in that wasn't in an amusement park was for Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, and we all know how that turned out.

You'd think I would have learned my lesson.

Another thing we never do is Black Friday shopping. Generally, Trash has such a head start on the Christmas shopping by mid-November that there really isn't any point. But this year, with M. Edium getting old enough to covet some pretty pricey Star Wars crap (cue "circle of life" hand sign here, in the form of one finger orbiting a fixed point while aimed at the ceiling), there were some deals at Toys 'R Us we didn't think we could pass up. And the sales started at midnight, so I wouldn't even have to wake up early. Even better, I used the occasion as an excuse to steal a late-evening nap. "Wake me up at 11:15," I told Trash at ten p.m., feeling pretty sly for using a twenty-minute toy run to score an hour-plus snooze.

When I left for the toy store at 11:20, I brought my book along to read while I waited in the car for the doors to open. But then, as I pulled into the parking lot, which was more full than I've ever seen at that store, I saw the line of people stretching around the far corner of the building. An oft-used Star Wars quote came to mind: "I've got a bad feeling about this."

I parked as quickly as I could and left my book in the car (because it was Under the Dome and all the shopping carts were inside the store) to join the rapidly growing line. It went even further around the corner, all the way to the first entrance of the adjoining store. So I was glad I didn't waste any time joining it, or I would have been even further back than I was.

Cue "circle of life" hand sign again, but this time rotate it ninety degrees so that finger is pointed at temple. By the way, all the conversations I overheard in the line during that long, cold, windy wait was about how crazy all these other people were. Now that the line was soon extending an entire city block behind me.

The first of many text messages Trash and I exchanged that night was a picture of the line stretching out in front of me before disappearing around the corner. She texted back, asking if I wanted to just skip it and come back home. I said no, it's fine, I'm here. And I still thought I'd be able to get in and out of there in twenty minutes. I knew what I wanted and where it was, after all. I was only after a couple of things. I wasn't like those people in line with me, who would be spending hours in there loading up shopping carts high above the level of exit door clearance.

The thing is that twenty minutes after midnight, I was still outside, waiting to get in.

But I did make it in shortly after that. Even then, I thought I had an advantage over everyone else. The default path is to come in on the right side of the store, do a loop around the back, and come back out on the right. But since I knew what I wanted was on the right side of the store, I was able to cut through the narrower aisles that ran across closer to the front and get straight to the Star Wars department, grab one of the three copies of the large item I wanted (stacked right there in the middle of the aisle, handily enough), and move on.

Well, except for the "move on" part. Getting that thing into my cart was the last thing that went smoothly all into that long, long night.

More on that in a couple of days.

posted by M. Giant 10:05 PM 1 comments

1 Comments:

Oy. I've got a bad feeling about this.

BookieBookie

By Anonymous Anonymous, at November 29, 2009 at 11:08 AM  

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