I've never been a big shopper.
I like to go out and get whatever it is I'm looking for, usually after some comparative price searching on the Internet, and that is that. Done deal.
So when I joined the mass of shoppers at the Mall at Rockingham Park today, it was the first time in my life I've participated in the Black Friday spending spree. In fact, it was probably the first time since I was six that I got up before 7 a.m. on the day after Thanksgiving.
My job was to get reactions and shopping stories and the key to eliciting a good story from a man-on-the-street perspective is asking the right question. Unfortunately, when it comes to shopping, I have no idea what that question is.
Thankfully, despite the long lines and heavy crowds, most of the people crowding the mall (known affectionately by the local police as the M.A.R.P) were in good spirits.
"I'm spending more (this year). I'm trying to help the economy," said one laughing man. "This is the busiest I've ever seen it here. I don't know who's pulling whose leg on the economy."
A glum faced gentleman holding a bag full of purchases outside of an Aeropostale told me he was there for his wife.
"Anything for the wife," he said, before mentioning something about getting skinned alive if he hadn't been at the mall shopping with her on Black Friday.
The last person I interviewed, a mother shopping with her two daughters, had been up since 3:30 a.m. When I asked her for her motivation, she smiled and said it was an annual tradition with her daughters.
"I'm not a big shopper," she said.
Sure. Maybe not 364 days out of the year, but waiting in line for a register at Kohl's for an hour is more than I'm willing to go through.
I was happy to sneak out of the parking lot with a minimum of problems and be back in bed by 9:30 for a quick nap. Between drop-dead-deals and dozing, I'll always take a few extra hours of sleep.