Black Friday

Something for the 500 Club, which I haven’t written for in entirely too long, and for Nimue who told me some time ago that all my 500 Club posts are sad. This one started out that way—started, in fact, based on the other prompt. The opening line was “Give me the baseball bat” and it got less cheery from there.

So, in the spirit of the holiday season, I scrapped it and started over, determined to write something a little more light-hearted and fun. Hope you (anyone who’s still reading) enjoy it.

black friday

I don’t know where the name “Black Friday” came from, but it fits. Black like the night you spend sitting outside some ungodly temple to capitalism waiting for the doors to slide open at 6 am, or 4, or 2, or midnight. Black like the pupils of the other shoppers, dead-eyed and greedy, clutching ads and newspapers and Styrofoam cups of coffee while they wait. Black like the darkened haze that now falls over the entire day of Thanksgiving which we no longer spend being thankful for what we have but plotting routes and wake-up times and stores to hit for all the things we don’t have yet. Or black like the ring of bruised skin around my left eye which recently made the acquaintance of a fellow shopper’s elbow.

I don’t know what irritates me more–that I got a black eye doing a modified dive-and-roll for the last blue Fijit Friend or that I was attempting to acquire a Fijit Friend at all. Those things creep me the hell out, as do all manner of dolls/stuffed animals/whatever-a-Fijit-is that claim to mimic human behavior. But Megan wants one and I’m a sucker for that kid.

The guy who elbowed me didn’t mean to, I don’t think. He was going for the same (God help me) Fijit and already had his arms spread to collect the little dancing freak doll. His wing span just happened to be wide enough to enter my “dance space” and voila, black eye. In fairness to him, he did retract his elbow only seconds after feeling solid contact with my skull. Of course, he did so while also pushing me clear with his considerable hips, but he had the decency to look mildly embarrassed afterwards. I even got an “I’m sorry, Ma’am.”


That moron couldn’t have been more than 5 years younger than me. When did that start?

Point is, I missed my chance at the Fijit. The blue one, anyway. The yellow ones were in plentiful stock so I pick up one of those after inspecting my person to make sure no limbs had been pulled free. It hurt, though. The eye and the yellow Fijit. Megan’s favorite color is blue.

I made my way to the front of the store to pay, meandering back and forth to be sure I hadn’t missed anything I didn’t want to, and found myself behind moron in the check out line. His cart easily held over a grand worth of toys, games and assorted shit, the blue Fijit sitting proud on the top of the stack, taunting me.

Moron was playing Angry Birds on his phone when, miracle of miracles, another line opened up. He wasn’t watching, hadn’t even noticed me behind him. I withdrew quickly and quietly and scurried to the newly opened line. Five minutes later I was out, free and clear. The Fijit was paid for and I could go grab some breakfast. I slid my new blue friend into the passenger seat and smiled.

Megan likes blue.