The following is a rerun of a blog I wrote last year. Read it!
Ah, it’s that time of year again! The hustle and bustle of Christmas is in the air. I think I’ll go shopping! Just let me make sure I have everything I need to bring with me: jacket, scarf, gloves, purse, water bottle, money, credit card, pepper spray…
Pepper spray? Apparently we all might want to carry some of this along on our next shopping trip—or at least something to arm ourselves with. You’ve probably already heard about the woman in California who showered shoppers with pepper spray in order to make a beeline for a crate of Xbox video game players that were being unwrapped late Thanksgiving night. The incident happened at a Walmart in an “upscale” neighborhood in Los Angeles. This incident was only one of several across the nation during the Black Friday festivities; the article went on to mention the most serious case where a robber shot a shopper who refused to give up his purchases outside a Walmart in the San Francisco area.
I was reading the Yahoo message board for this story and enjoying many of the comments. Someone said, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year~!” to which I added, “With pepper spray flying as folks are out buying…” and to which the original poster added, “…cheap toaster ovens and beer…” Heehee. I was hoping others would come along and add their own verses to this Andy Williams classic, but our posts were soon buried amidst the many others on that fast-moving board.
Of course besides the usual profanity, there were the nasty racist remarks, where people said she must be black, or Hispanic (and they used offensive terms as well). There were numerous attempts at humor about how strange it was for a Walmart to be in a well-off neighborhood. Many were fearful about what the holiday has become and said they don’t feel safe anymore. And then two women began discussing how they don’t shop over Thanksgiving but prefer to stay home and have a nice meal, open a bottle of wine, etc. They received a stern lecture from me about the evils of alcohol (which didn’t go over well for some reason…). I also posted once that “She was probably smoking pot.” It was a joke, but I don’t think many people got it. Oh well.
While that pepper spray lady and the shooter definitely will be on Santa’s naughty list this year, I honestly don’t think we need to worry so much when we’re out picking up holiday gifts. I personally didn’t participate in Black Friday (especially not at 3 a.m.—that’s sleepy time!), but I’m sure that incidents like these are extremely rare and that most people are nice and polite. And all-in-all there were many humorous comments and quips on that board—even though I know this is a serious subject. So an attempt to keep the holiday spirit light and gay, I shall share with you here some of the more witty ones I saw on that forum, all from fellow Yahoo posters. I hope you enjoy them.
“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, everywhere you go! Rich snob and her fancy pepper spray. Around here we can’t afford pepper spray, we have to knife people to get them out of our way.”
“She was sharing her ‘food product’; she probably thought they were hungry.”
“There is really something wrong with a society in which people kill each other over a waffle maker.”
“Black Friday around Walmart is must see for any tourists.”
“The pepper spray probably cost more than the savings she got on the merchandise.”
“Try Black Eye Friday or Black and Blue Friday.”
“What would Jesus buy?”
“Her sentence should be six months of hard labor…as a Walmart greeter.”
“She will end up writing a book about it, and it will be sold at Walmart!”
“Who says video games don’t lead to violence!”
“Just cancel Christmas.”
“What the heck was she thinking? Pepper spray for an Xbox? Should’ve went for the Playstation!”
“Them #$%$ Cabbage Patch dolls started this whole violent shopping craze.”
“Happy Birthday Jesus!”