Staying home on Black Friday: Better than free unicorns

Here’s a little-known fact about me: Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. But immediately following a lovely day of gorging myself into a coma is my least favorite day—Black Friday.

Don’t get me wrong: I love Christmas shopping. Leisurely strolling through stores, sipping on my Starbucks Peppermint Mocha,  hand-in-hand with The Hubs, finding the perfect gift for my loved ones… that’s what I like.

I know. We're adorable.
I know. We’re adorable.

Black Friday is pretty much the opposite of that. As much as I enjoy a good bargain, I’m not willing to sacrifice sleep, family and my sanity to get it. (Notice I put sleep first? Not an accident.)

And the people who set up camp at midnight or whatever… all for a cheap Christmas present? Are you kidding me? They could be giving away free unicorns, you guys. And that still wouldn’t convince me to give up my nice comfy bed and 8+ hours of sleep I so rightfully deserve. (I NEED MY SLEEP, PEOPLE.)

Yawn.
Yawn.

But I get that for some people, the bargain-getting part is fun for them… or, more likely, gives them a high that nothing else (legally, that is) can compare. I’m convinced that for some, searching for a good bargain is like a drug addict looking to score. And once they find it, it’s like the euphoria of the first… snort? Smoke?  Whatever the kids do nowadays.

Something with eggs? That's a thing, right?
Something with eggs? That’s a thing, right?

Think I’m exaggerating? Have you seen people on Black Friday? Compare them to a crazy-eyed drug addict and tell me what the difference is. I dare you.

This is actually a picture of a drug dealer's house.
This is actually a picture of a drug deal.

But for me, everything about it just turns me off to the point that I refuse to even leave my house on Black Friday.  Since my husband and I host Thanksgiving, I use that day to recover from my hostess duties, aka lie on the couch so long that we weld together and create a human/couch hybrid. This year my cat joined us and we created a never-seen-before human/couch/feline hybrid. I expect a call from National Geographic any day now.

Take that, free unicorns.

Thanksgiving Leftovers

This is an old blog post from fall of ’09. Leftovers from an old blog, if you will. See what I did there? Okay, fine—I’m in the middle of a turkey hangover and didn’t feel like writing a new blog post. Anyway, enjoy.

 This is a tale of the day I decided to take a walk and the disturbing events that transpired as a result. It was a beautiful late afternoon. I walked down down the main road, swinging my arms merrily, with no premonition of what horror would soon befall me. I was ready to turn left at the corner when a neighbor’s bulldog, which had been wandering aimlessly in the yard, saw me and started doing that growly barking thing that dogs do. Still staring at me, he then left the yard and trotted purposefully to where I had stopped short.

I sensed this wasn’t going to be a neighborly chat.  Maybe because his flat eyes had no expression and he was squinting at me like a mob character.

"You disappoint me, my friend."
“I’ll make ya an offer you can’t refuse.”

So I’m standing there, more irritated than afraid, even though at this point the dog is right in front of me and growling.  Every time I’ve been by this house there were always twenty people lounging on the front porch but of course that day there was no one.

I finally spotted movement in the garage and called out impatiently, “Uh, could you call off your dog?”

When I said that, the dog began inching closer to me.  (Still growling, by the way.  When you picture this scene, just picture the dog constantly growling.)

The guy heard me, but took his sweet time until I started getting seriously ticked off. What kind of person just lets their dog accost innocent exercisers?

The dog, probably sensing his owner wasn’t quite done scratching his head over this puzzling conundrum, chose that moment to lunge at my leg.  Luckily, I have long legs and the reflexes of a ninja.  Or maybe I just have long legs and it had the stumpy legs of a bulldog.  Whatever. Luckily, I was able to dance away before any damage was done.  Although it did leave doggy saliva on my cute workout pants.

Unforgivable. Now I’m really steamed. “It just tried to bite me!”

Finally, finally, the owner lopes over and ineffectually makes a grab for the dog.  Oh, and by the way? IT’S NOT EVEN WEARING A COLLAR. Do you know how hard it is to grab a dog that’s not wearing a collar? You could almost see it sneering as it easily backed away out of the owner’s reach.  All it needed was a wife-beater and a cigarette dangling from its jowls.

"Maybe you didn't hear me the first time. I ain't goin' nowheres."
“Maybe you didn’t hear me the first time. I ain’t goin’ nowheres.”

And what do I get from the esteemed owner by way of an apology? This:

DOG OWNER: Huh huh huh. [long pause] Sorry.

Um. What? Your freaking dog just tried to maul me and that’s all I get? Although I think it was really more of an angry hump attempt rather than an attack but still. My leg almost got raped by your dog, pal. And that is NOTHING TO LAUGH ABOUT.

But this was not over, my friend. Not by a long shot.

The next morning I called the county dog warden where I reached an improbably cheerful woman and told her that a neighbor’s uncollared, unleashed dog tried to bite me. (I figured an attempted angry hump wouldn’t impress her so I left that part out.) She said they’d send someone to the house.

I pictured some 7 foot, 300 pound guy coming to the owner’s door and  removing the dog from the house in disgrace. Maybe in handcuffs, with all the other dogs in the neighborhood pointing and laughing. The idea gave me great pleasure.

So after work Eric informs me that the dog warden left a note on our door. What? Did they mix up the address or something? He then says in horror, “You didn’t give them our address, did you?” Like the dude would go up to the owner’s house, point and say, “Hey, the lady who lives in that house said your dog tried to molest her so he must be destroyed. Preferably in front of your children. And I heard her husband say you walk like a woman.” Because dog wardens are troublemaking pot-stirrers, I guess.

How my husband pictured the dog warden. In Eric's defense, this guy is clearly up to no good.
How my husband pictured the dog warden. In Eric’s defense, this guy is clearly up to no good.

Even though I was sure he was just being a paranoid, I called  the dog warden again and was informed they check on both the complainer and the complainee. Okay, whatever. So what happened to the dog? I ask. Waterboarding? A non-stop marathon of The AristicatsWhat?

"NOOOOOOO! I'll be a good dog, I swear!"
“NOOOOOOO! I’ll be a good dog, I swear!”

Do you want to know what happened? The dog warden went by a couple times when no one was home, then when he showed up again a kid answered the door. A kid who claimed he didn’t “know anything about a dog.”

"What dog? I don't know nuthin' about no dog."
“What dog? I don’t know nuthin’ about no dog.”

What kind of kid denies the existence of his own dog?! Let me get a hold of that kid—then we’ll see if his memory improves.  (cracks knuckles) But apparently there’s some law against that or something. Stupid hippies are ruining this country.

Anyway, they can’t give a citation to a minor so that’s it. A crazed dog tries to molest me and gets away with it. This is the direction America is going, people.

However, the kid must have said something to his parents, because while looking out the window one day (not spying on the neighbors), I noticed the Bulldog from Hell on a leash as a woman followed behind picking up doggie poo.  Although I think she should make the dog pick up his own poop as punishment. But one step at a time, my friends. For now, I guess that’s good enough.