Every year, retail employees dread the inevitable Black Friday nightmares that most will only know about because of the news. While you experience the shock and awe of Black Friday horror stories from the safety of your homes, retail workers must deal with the worst Black Friday incidents as they unfold in all their discount-induced devastation.
Childhood havens like Toys R Us take a nosedive into anarchy while already obnoxious retail spots like Walmart descend from the third circle of Hell into the seventh layer. Retail employees who work on Black Fridays describe soul-crushing accounts of shoppers yelling, shoving, and full-on assaulting other customers and employees in order to get that plasma flat-screen or Furby.
Black Friday is, indeed, that. It keeps companies in the black but it leaves employees to see humanity through black-colored glasses.
MP3 Players Induced A Heart Attack
"I was working for a Media Play during Black Friday. They were going out of business, so there were just liquidation prices, no sale prices. We had made a tower of MP3 Players that were moderately priced, and put them by the front door. I think they were $20 each or something like that - this was back when 512 MB ones were just starting to be phased out.
"People start to line up outside the door at 4 AM. We don't open until our normal 10 AM time. About 8 AM, they start to bang on the door. My manager explains that we don't open for another two hours, and things start to get a little rough outside. At 10 AM, we open the doors...
"Leading the pack is an elderly woman who looked to be a hundred sporting a walker. She waddles into the store, 'running' with her walker, and dives for the MP3 Player Pyramid we'd put up - literally throwing herself into it with her arms out, frantically grabbing all she can get her hands on. She hits the ground, hard, and people start to flood the store. A few of them step on her. Being the normal retail zealots we are, we just sat there and watched the flood come in.
"Meanwhile, on the floor, the fossil that hit the ground hard is suddenly clutching her chest. We're all looking at each other trying to figure out what to do, so we try to help her up. She falls to the ground. Cycle repeats two more times, until we finally realize it's time to call the paramedics. During this entire endeavor, she's holding three MP3 Players and absolutely refuses to let them go.
"My co-worker dials 911 and the paramedics rush over with a gurney moments later. They're loading her on to the stretcher, and she's moaning about Christmas presents while still clutching the MP3 Players. The paramedics determine that between the excitement and throwing herself on the floor, the woman had triggered a heart attack. Let me say that one more time. The woman gave herself a heart attack diving for MP3 Players.
"The paramedics wheel her out and get her to the hospital. It wasn't a major one, but she outright refused to drop the merchandise at any given time. It went in the ambulance with her. My boss went to visit her in the hospital later that day, in uniform, and her first words were 'Oh my God, please don't press charges, I promise I'll pay for it right now.'
"The MP3 players were sitting on her night stand, next to her bed. It'd apparently taken a sedative to get her to let go of them."1,040113Is this horrifying?
That Security Guard Started His Shift With A Fist (To The Face)
From a deleted user:
"Someone punched a security guard in the face because he thought he was a customer skipping to the front of the line... he was just walking in the door to start his shift. So yeah, my town has those kind of people in it."81974Is this horrifying?
A Gaming System Was At The Root Of This Black Friday Fight
From a deleted user:
"I was a GameStop worker when the Wii came out. The second we unlocked the doors, sh*t was a riot. People were fighting one another, swearing, crying, just about everything. People were so desperate, when people managed to get one, somebody would throw the other person to the ground and buy it."74161Is this horrifying?
Employees Only Signs Were Irrelevant On Black Friday
"I work back of house at a Toys R Us. I spent Black Friday taking big ticket items to the back where we just loaded them into the customers car instead of trying to make our way to the front of the store.
"Apparently, someone decided it was fine to wander into the back storage room and start opening boxes to find what they wanted. Other customers saw this one [jerk] do it and then decided it was okay if they did too.
"The other back of house guys and I were busy wrestling with a really obnoxious bed set, so when I made it to the other side of our back storage, I found like [about 10] people just taking cases off our bays and opening them, then tossing them aside if they didn't want it. They claimed there was nothing indicating they couldn't come back there. We have a two signs on the swinging door saying 'Employees Only' and 'Warning: Only authorized personal beyond this point!'"828113Is this horrifying?