Saturday, December 4, 2010

Does it still count as a boycott?

I always boycott Black Friday. Here you have a holiday that absolutely everyone celebrates, and what? Instead of spending it with family, friends or relaxing, we're supposed to run some manic gerbil-wheel of consumption? Screw that.

The Friday after Thanksgiving I biked to the gym, and on the way back decided to stop at the Salvation Army in Evanston to pick up some winter things. I like shopping there; people are friendly, there's no attitude, and I get some pretty cool stuff very cheap.

When I arrived, Bride of Dracula was outside smoking a cigarette. I smiled at her and she nodded and smiled back. Inside, the place was hopping. It seems even the SA sees a bit of Black Friday. I found lots of good stuff on the racks, and was enjoying the vibe, the hustle and bustle, the great supply of clothes. Finally, I made my way to the line at the register. A woman in front of me was talking to her teenage daughter, who was looking at a fleece jacket.

"Do you like it?" she asked her daughter.

"I'm not sure," the girl said.

"That's a nice jacket," I told her. "Champion is a very good brand, and it wears well for a long time."

They were unfamiliar with Champion, but thanked me and took the jacket.

"Are you a Pisces?" asked the daughter.

"Nope. Leo," I replied. "Talking to strangers, giving them advice, offering an unsolicited opinion. What else could I be?"

"Do you get along with Ares people?" she asked.

"I'm not sure, really," I said. "But my best friend is a Cancer."

They both visibly flinched.

"Really?? asked the mother. They both stared.

"Um. Yeah. Best friend in the whole world."

"How does that work?" the mother asked.

"Well, we are brutally honest with one another and it rolls off our backs, I guess," I said. I sensed they wanted more, and I felt bad that I'd disappointed them with an absence of drama.

Then I idly looked to my right and saw a loveseat. It was small, and somewhat 1970s-ish, but with a very pleasant, benign pattern. I sat on it with my legs extended. Perfect fit.

I've been looking for a loveseat but can't afford a new one, and most of the used ones are lousy. I tend to avoid most upholstered things at second-hand shops, but this item was clean as a whistle and in extraordinarily good shape.

"How much for the loveseat?" I asked Bride of Dracula.

"Sixty-five," she said in her sub-sonic voice.

"That's IT?" I asked. She looked at me with a "you don't buy furniture here much, do you?" look.

I stared at the loveseat, deciding.

"Is a very nice piece," came the rumble behind me.

"OK. I'll take it."

So it was that my Black Friday boycott ended with a "new" loveseat being delivered by Ray the next morning. And today I saw the mother and daughter at Whole Foods. We are full-spectrum people.


SP said...

Oh wow. You shopped on Black Friday. That's radical.

JC said...

Ye, I left the house. To go to the gym. You should try both sometime.