Black Friday Recap
After reading all of the sales ads yesterday, I was a little disappointed in what was being offered for Black Friday this year. Normally I have all of the stores mapped out according to opening times, and a notebook with the clippings of various things that I want. This year the only thing that peeked my interest was a 32" flat screen HD television. They were offered at several stores, but the best bargain I found was at Circuit City. I just bought another 32" for my bedroom a couple of weeks ago, but this one was $150 cheaper, so I couldn't pass it up! No need to map out the day- no need to clip the ad. I only had one target for the day.
Circuit City opened at 5:00am. In an effort to beat the crowd, I got up early and was in the car and headed towards Camp Creek Marketplace by 2:45am. On a side note-- I got dressed last night and slept in my clothes (including shoes) so that I wouldn't lose anytime getting ready this morning!). When I got to the store at 3am, there was a pretty long line. Given my experience with Black Friday (they normally only have a few of the advertised items), I gave up and drove on home. By this point, I had already had a couple of cups of strong coffee, so there was no point in trying to go back to bed.
Joel called me a little before 5am to see if I got the TV. I told him about the line and and he convinced me to go back to the store-- they were about to open and there would be no line. They were offering bargains on several different TVs and maybe people were waiting for the other ones- the larger ones. I poured another cup of coffee into my Flying Biscuit travel mug and headed back to CCMP.
As expected, the store was open and there was no line outside. However, there was a long line inside. I asked the greeter if I should get in line. He asked if I had a voucher. I said no. They had given out vouchers to the people in the line outside prior to opening. There were only 13 of the sets that I wanted and of course, all 13 vouchers were given out prior to 5am. The greeter told me to get in line and wait-- you never know! So I got in line.
I was standing in front of a really nice lady that had her heart set on a 42" TV. She didnt' have a voucher either. We got to talking and had a great conversation. She had done her homework and knew what other stores were offering similar bargains. She had her cell phone and was in constant contact with all of her other friends at other stores.
We kept asking the employees if we were wasting our time in this line. There were no vouchers for the items we wanted. We were told that at 8am, anyone could purchase the items without a voucher, if there were any of the items remaing. So basically all I could hope for was that someone campled out all night for the voucher and then, at the last minute, decided not to use it. Doubtful. But, because I was enjoying my conversation with the 42" lady, I stayed in line and she did the same. As the line progressed and we got closer and closer to the front, we wondered what we would do when we got to the front of the line. At that point you are supposed to show your voucher and make your purchase.
Around 7am, I was close to the front of the line. There were maybe three customers ahead of me. One of the employees that we had been chatting up for the past 2 hours "found" a voucher for the 42" and gave it to my friend. She said goodbye and left the line (by this point they had opened other registers with less waiting).
Now I was 2nd in line. I still had no voucher and felt that I had wasted several hours-- I could've gone to another store and paid a little more, but by this point it would be the same situation everywhere else. I was all prepared to go home empty handed. Just then I realized that the guy in front of me was holding 2 vouchers! One for the 50" projection tv that Joel and I had joked about yesterday ("they should give those things away", we joked, "who in their right mind would want a projection tv these days?"). The other voucher in his hand was for the 32" tv that I had been waiting for. He was trying to decide which voucher to use. I turned to the stranger behind me and started talking about how great projection tvs were. She agreed. I thought a little subliminal messaging couldn't hurt at this point. It must've worked, because he decided to by the 50" and turned in his voucher for the 32". After witnessing his transaction, it was my turn to check out.
It couldn't have worked out any more perfectly. I asked the cashier (knowingly) if she had any vouchers for the 32" and she said yes and handed it to me. The golden ticket was finally in my grasp! I said "I'll take it" and handed the voucher back to her. I made my purchase and 10 minutes later I was headed back home with a deeply discounted, big screen tv in the back seat, and a story to add to my Black Friday history of bargains!
I am so glad that Joel called me and talked me into not giving up. Thank God for big brothers!
Happy Black Friday!