Friday, November 26, 2010

Starting the Christmas Shopping Season

I slugged a guy at Target early this morning.  He was reaching for the last Samsung 80-inch HD LCD television significantly marked down, and I wasn't about to let that happen.  I'm not proud of what I did, yet at the same time I had run into the store before he did and felt a certain degree of entitlement.  Moreover, the UFC bout between Velasquez and Rodriguez next weekend, I knew, was going to be spectacular on this screen.  (I'd also like to point out, for what's worth, that I cut my knuckles on his glasses; so in a way I've already paid for my sin.)  I suppose I should make another confession, and this one's more embarrassing.  The guy's wife bit me on the calf, and even managed to get her teeth through my jeans.  Reeling from the pain and without much thought, I thwacked her hard on the head with my wife's purse.  Stunned, she whirled around and around until she fell back into a cardboard display advertising kodak cameras.  She's okay, I think.  Why did I have my wife's purse?  She tossed it to me, bless her heart, while blocking off an aisle in the electronics section so that my daughter could have first crack at the Xbox consoles.

I sensed a lot of tension even before the doors opened, as people were jockeying for position.  You could feel the electricity in the air, yet I had no clue that this shopping experience would turn into a struggle for Darwinian survival.  I saw an elderly lady with demon-like eyes literally yanking a sweater out of the hands of a young child.  I witnessed a father and his son kicking over a young woman's cart just because she made the mistake of stopping between them and the checkout counter to nurse her infant.  I saw a family of five cursing to hell a store clerk because he had the audacity to tell them the DVD players were limited one per family.  A security guard tried to intervene, but he slipped on a puddle of coffee that was created when a patron tossed the contents of her Starbucks cup in another woman's face, adamant as she was to secure an entire stack of toilet seat covers.  Why she wanted so many of them I will never know.  This awful experience taught me a few things about myself and the spirit of Christmas.  First, if that little voice inside you tells you not to leave your combat knife in the car, listen to it.  Second, some things in life are just worth fighting for.