Forgive me dog, for I have sinned.
I went Christmas shopping on Black Friday.
It was completely unintentional, I swear. All I needed was a haircut. I wouldn’t have minded putting it off, but my hair was already close to shoulder length, so my immediate need won out. My usual place, though, is sadly right inside McKinley Mall, at one of those giant department stores, no less. I got in, paid for my haircut, and got out with surprising ease.
After it was done, though, I needed something to do. The traffic coming in was denser than a pecan pie on Thanksgiving, so there was probably no way my ride in had gotten home before my haircut ended. There was also the little fact that I had not yet started my own Christmas shopping, which is unusual for me because I happen to adhere to a very strict policy of early bird Christmas shopping. It’s one of the infallible laws of my personal code to be absolutely finished with all necessary Christmas shopping by the beginning of November and completely avoid holiday season shopping like the plague that it is.
Unfortunately, this year, I had to wait until my student loan refund check was in my paws before starting, and that finally happened last week. Then there was the minor matter of, you know, school itself to deal with. Yeah, my Christmas shopping went through an endless series of delays, all culminating in that one single weekend when I finally had a few minutes to go out and do something to let my mind wander. A couple of hours of worthless mall wandering fit the description nicely.
I already had a few gift ideas in mind when I set out, but I was looking for that one “bingo!” idea that set off the light bulb floating atop my head. So being of open mind and little to no sanity, I set out, looking in places both usual and unusual for the people I buy gifts for. I checked out the Made in America store, which, by the way, I truly believe is nothing more than a brand name now that I’ve been there. It was populated with awful people; not just awful people of the usual stripe who shop on Black Friday, but people I wanted to fucking kill after hearing handfuls of their conversational snippets. I journeyed up, down, left, right, and every corresponding diagonal in between.
In one store, though, I saw it. That perfect gift that a certain person really wanted, ringing up at a very reasonable price. I didn’t know if there was a sale or not, but I’m very well-known for my ability to get the most out of a dollar, and so I decided there was no better time to make the purchase than right there.
I’ve rarely felt dirtier.