Black Friday is gross and demeaning and bad for the world. I should have stayed home and Bought Nothing, but I needed a laptop and I couldn’t sleep anyway, having inhaled roughly 4,000 gravy-and-pie-related calories. So I got up just before midnight and sallied forth to Best Buy to see what might be seen. It was raining, but I figured, Hey, an adventure.

The parking lot looked like Calcutta. I got that lonely-in-a-crowd feeling, so I started talking to the woman next to me. I had an in because she was waring a University of Alberta sweatshirt.

“Canadians don’t really do this, eh?” I asked. She allowed that no, they did not, but — like most Albertans in public — she was less than effervescently friendly. Plus, she and I were looking for the same laptop, so our line-friendship was doomed.

The doors opened, whereupon the throng fell upon 50-inch plasma TVs with glad cries. I ran to the laptop aisle, grabbed a $379 miracle of Chinese construction, and got in the checkout line. The customers behind me were a group of bros* waxing poetic about their new electronic toys and their post-doorbusting plans:

Bro #1: “Bro, we’re going to IHOP, right?”

Bro #2: “Fuck yeah.”

Bro # 3: “I’ma get waffles, yo. Pancakes are fuckin’ GAY.”

Ordinarily, I’d have turned around and given a stern “watch your mouth” speech — they were teenage boys, and I can handle those — but, right at that moment, there was an unexpected occurrence.

I started my period. With cramps.

Here’s where I got a taste of Black Friday shame: I couldn’t step out of line and head for the ladies room, because I’d have lost my spot. The line was three city blocks long. So I decided to be stoic and stalwart; to stare stone-faced into the middle distance like Maxine Hong Kingston’s woman warrior, Fa Mu Lan (who was also known for letting her moon blood flow).

Except I bet Fa Mu Lan was wearing underpants.**

Anyway, I left Best Buy just in time to save my socks, and returned home like a warrior: rain-soaked, covered in blood, and victorious. Now I have the laptop I’m typing this on, some pie, and a heating pad. Happy Thanksgiving Weekend to all!


*A group of fish is a “school” and a group of crows is a “murder,” but we lack a name for groups of roaming frat boys. I suggest a “ram” (a “douche” being both misogynistic and politically problematic). A ram of bros.

**I just don’t feel like you need them with yoga bottoms, you know?

20 thoughts on “Doorbusters!

  1. I’ve never understood why the day when people get delirious with joy over the gonga deals they are about to receive has a name that sounds like it connotes some past tragedy that took place on the day after Thanksgiving. It reminds me of Black Tuesday, the day the stock market crashed in 1929. That it is referred to as Black Friday is, to me, another indication of how demented we’ve become as a society. On the other hand, I hate shopping. I hate it even more if there are sales and crowds so for me the term makes perfect sense, but I don’t think I’m the norm.

  2. Ram of bros sounds good to me…. hate shopping… but did decide to go to local pet store yesterday, said hi to the two kitties in the adoption section, bought a couple of chew toys for big boy the dog, and specialty kitty food for my picky eater cat… as they say in Ireland, you’re a brave Col’ for going to Best Buy at midnight and giving this great report from the front lines….

  3. But douches are harmful to women, so therefore surely using “douche” as an insult isn’t misogynist, and is in fact quite appropriate. Maybe.

  4. bahaha! rainsoaked, bloodsoaked, and victorious, like an amazonian warrior. love it.

    remember a few years ago where a temp security guard was literally trampled to death at a long island walmart on black friday? google it. the whole thing is so disturbing. unfortunately, we needed a couple of things from target yesterday so we went out around 2 pm. it had died down by then, but then again we werent shopping for electronics and went in the opposite direction. we paid full price for 2 pillows and fruit of the loom boxer shorts but it was uneventful.

  5. “…a name that sounds like it connotes some past tragedy that took place on the day after Thanksgiving.”

    Yeah, I don’t get it either. It totally does sound like a past national tragedy. It may be a current one.

  6. Thanks 🙂 I was so happy to get home safely, albeit covered in blood. Now I need a laptop cover — couldn’t face the Best Buy accessories aisle — so am scouting them on Amazon. has some good ones, but I recently found out that it’s owned by some right-wing jerk. Can we NEVER win?

  7. I like the way “a gaggle of girls” sounds, with its alliteration, so what about “a braggle of bros”?

    Also, standing in a long line and suddenly being hit with menstrual cramps sounds like a contender for Worst Thing Ever to me; I’m glad you at least got a new laptop in compensation.

    (I’ve been celebrating Buy Nothing Day all my life, but only found out about it being an actual thing a few years ago. My family just hates crowds*, so we’ve always stayed in on Black Friday. I’d like to do Buy Nothing Christmas again; I’ve tried it once or twice. My most successful go at it involved making a beaded necklace for my sister that resembled a coral snake. My sister likes wild animals a lot, the more exotic and dangerous, the better. So it was a winner, even if she is not the biggest jewelry hound.)

    *I’m the only autistic one, but my dad is VERY antisocial. Sometimes I think he might be more bothered by having other people around than I am.

  8. Lindsay, I’m a big believer in buy nothing as a holiday policy. What my partner and I started doing many years ago was saving gifts we’d gotten from others and putting them in the gift box.
    People are always buying us stuff we don’t want and don’t need, but no amount of telling this is going to stop consumer crazed Americans. Anyway, at holiday time, we just go to the gift box, and voila, we always find things to give to friends. The all time winner was a Japanese/English cookbook…. we’d had it in perfect condition for 20 years, and suddenly, yesterday, I realized it would be perfect for a Japanese-American friend who like to cook.
    I gave it to her for a birthday present and she LOVED it!!! Things we already have in perfect condition make great gifts. Imagine all these women out there with all that junk in mini storage getting rid of it— they could fund an entirement retirement savings account with the money they paid for the mini storage!!! Regifting appropriately is the way to go!!!

  9. no, its a really boring story actually. kink in neck from old pillows, situation became intolerable as of friday morning. bad timing is all. 🙂

  10. So…I’m needing ideas on a nice, inexpensive gift for my A&P prof and her partner, for Christmas. I’m more crafty than rich, and DON’T want it to be even a HINT of any sort of “Oh, crap! Hazeleyed has a crush on me…” (mostly b/c i, DO, admittedly find myself smitten – heh).

    But seriously, this has been a tough class for me, and this prof makes learning the info bearable and class is fun. I was looking on HRC site for something “office-y” for smart, lesbo-prof and something nice for her to share w/ partner from an appreciative student – since she talks about her partner so much, we feel like we know “becky”, too…but the problem is we actually DON’T know Becky, so I am just at a loss!

    Help? Links or ideas would rock! 🙂 THANK YOU! 🙂

  11. Have decided to make very simple sugar cookies and decorate them uniquely – instead of Christmas decorations, I’m thinking cell mitosis, ovum, and the like. And maybe a few football shaped ones, or some bird-ish ones since they like IU football and are avvid bird watchers. 🙂 I think the cell mitosis ones will crack her/them up! 🙂

  12. Lindsay –

    since she’s A&P teacher, am considering not just cell stuff, but kidney, heart, eye, Krebs Cycle and some RBCs/WBCs… Am going to have lots of fun w/ this! 🙂

    How could I find you (facebook, etc?) to share photos…?


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