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Those who work in retail are cowering in fear of what this week—the week of Black Friday—will bring. Rather than family time and turkey, they'll be dealing hangry, sleep-deprived line standers out for a deal, thanks to the decision makers at department stores and malls. In anticipation, Reddit user Denton56 posted the question/demand, "Whether you work retail currently, or just did in the past, I've got to know what the craziest thing you've ever seen on Black Friday is" to AskReddit. And what followed was a slew of horror stories offered without comment below.
The ironic, in an Alanis Morissette kind of way (really, really unfortunate):
Worked security at Target for 5+ years. For being a store in the rougher part of town, I don't have too many horror stories. The funniest one I like to tell is a couple years ago, I was there early doing crowd control. I would always talk to people in line, try to keep them entertained while they waited in the cold. The first couple in line had been there for about 13 or 14 hours. So we open the store, and we have deals on all sorts of electronics, toys, etc. They get in line and have a shopping cart full of towels that we had on sale for $2. Thats it. Just towels. They were first in line outside and waited over half a day for $2 towels. When I left after my 12 hour shift, we still had shelves full of these towels, along with tons more in the stockroom. [Lineman72T]
The hangry terror:
I worked for six yrs at a Johnny rockets in a mall as a server and management. We didn't open early like the rest of the stores because we are a restaurant and well, we don't serve breakfast. Had people shake our gates screaming that they wanted food. Ot would be just me and a opener getting the chairs set out [sic]. I pointed them towards the food court and told them we didn't serve breakfast. A lady spit at me and told.me "I know you have bacon." [Kidou]
The actually dangerous:
A couple years ago when the sale started there was a surge of people trying to get their stuff. One lady got knocked down and her pen went straight into her neck thankfully missing the jugular. The fucked up part is no one tried to help they just walked over her to get their shitty deal items. [wildcard084]
The remarkably disgusting:
When I worked at Sam's Club, during the madness one black Friday morning, we caught a woman stuffing the inside of her pants with frozen lobster tail. She would unpackage them and throw the trash in a stack of tires that were on display. [Nickdubs]
Scatological life lessons:
I worked for BBY for 6 years. Every one knows about the lines that you stand in out side. Part of the process is once you get into the store you stand in another line to buy your products. Our manger thought he was particularly smart winding the line through our appliance department.Mind you there is usually 1500+ people in the building at 6 am (with a line still outside). Well we get a complaint from one of our patrons. After checking the dryers we find a nice turd in one. Good size solid [consistency] just sitting there. A lady who did not want to lose her spot opened the dryer, and shat right there in front of every one. I decided that day even though I may want stuff; I will never shit in front of an entire crowd of people for $799 50" plasma TV. [Dave_Versus_Volcano]
When senility goes violent:
An 80 year old grandma tackled and then bear-maced a woman over fleece fabric at my store. The old lady wanted a cancer pink-ribbon fabric, and the woman she ultimately tackled had called ahead and ordered a bulk amount of it, because she works for a cancer organization and makes blankets for cancer patients.
The woman was wheeling a cart in the store with several large bolts of the fabric in it (which she had special ordered, and we put it in the cart for her so she could continue shopping.) Old lady sees that this woman has "ALL the bolts" and it isn't right that she's hogging the entire stock of that particular print. The woman explains the situation and that she in fact special ordered these, and that the reason she was coming in on black friday to purchase them is because they were a major black friday promotion at 60% off.
The old lady continues to yell at the poor woman. The woman very calmly keeps trying to reassure her that she is not taking any of the store stock, and that she makes blankets for dying women with breast cancer. She is a very sweet store regular who pays out of pocket for all the blankets, and so my store held the fabric for her until black friday, when she would come in and purchase them with her coupon.
Old lady doesn't give a shit. Whips out mace and tackles the woman.
Old lady gets kicked out of the store. She would come in once every couple of months, give me the stink eye, and then rebelliously write down recipes from the home and food magazines so she wouldn't have to buy them. Then she'd scurry out and come back in a few months. [Dothelokipokie]
I worked at Toys-R-Us when the original Furby came out. I walked in the back doors right before my shift, when doors were supposed to open. I had people follow me in and assault me trying to get a damn Furby. Then when doors finally did open, one parent pushed my coworker to the ground and jumped on top of a pile of people to get one from the display. She ended up kicking some poor schmuck in the head and grabbed a Furby and stuffed it down her shirt, and tried to casually walk out and steal it. [MsKnee]
And finally, hope:
This is not a horror story but it did happen early on Black Friday. In 2008 my son and I stood all night outside Best Buy so he could get a deal on a gaming console. They are really organized and they passed out papers to people for the door busters. They let those in the front of the line pick first. We were 12 back or so. They had laptops for $299, $499, $699, etc., as well as other great prices. So they get 5-6 people past us and a lady asks for the $299 dollar laptop and the clerk says they only have the $499 and up laptops left. Lady starts to cry, says she's starting night school and can't afford the $499 laptop and that she waited all night (which she had because she got there shortly after we did). A complete stranger from in front of us in the line walks over to her and says, "I knew I brought so much cash for a reason," and then peeled off $200 and handed it to her and walked back to his spot. People were losing it. "Do you know him?!" "Nope." "Did you see that, a guy gave that woman $200." Coolest thing I've ever witnessed at Christmas. [phil8248]
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