A couple of years ago around Christmas time, I came up with this brilliant way to avoid the crowds while doing your shopping during the last few days before the holiday itself. Sure, you can do your shopping online, but there will be something you inevitably forgot about and by then there isn't enough time for shipping, so you've got no choice but to head out to the stores and compete with the masses. With only five days left until the Big Day this Saturday, I figured I'd share my idea with you all to help reduce the suffering if you find yourself in this position.
Now, this only works if you are in a store like Walmart or Target, or a similar store that carries just about everything. I've broken it down into just a few simple steps:
- When you first go into the store, head straight for the Camping or Outdoor section.
- Upon arrival, pick up a hatchet (or ax, if there happens to be some on display).
- If the head is wrapped in a protective sleeve, remove it carefully.
- Sling the hatchet over your shoulder, blade side up, being mindful of your neck/ears.
- With a blank but wide-eyed expression on your face that suggests some kind of mental deficit or underlying rage, begin your shopping.
The idea is simple: Terrify people, or at least make them nervous enough, so they all move out of your way.
Both of the times I've done this, it has worked like a charm. I don't know if it's result of too many horror movies, but when people see a guy walking slowly around the store with a weird expression on his face and either a hatchet or an ax slung over his shoulder, they move out of the way like their ass is on fire and their hair is catching. Same goes with the checkout lines. If you and some other dude are approaching the only cashier with no one waiting to check out and you've got an ax on your shoulder? The other guy will usher you forward with no contest.
I didn't even realize what was happening the first time I did this until I was just about ready to check out. I was in the store to buy a hatchet and some other small things, and didn't even think about how I was carrying the hatchet until I noticed all the weird and concerned looks I was getting. And let me tell you: It's worth people thinking you're a potential ax murderer if it means you can cut through the crowds and checkout lines when it's 8:30pm on December 23rd.
Even though I didn't need a second hatchet, I did this again the year after for two reasons. One was that I needed to get in and out of the store quickly, and two was that I wanted to see if it'd work a second time. I managed to get in and out of the store in twenty minutes, which is no easy feat even during non-holiday times.
Before you say it, yes, I realize this plan has a lot of potential to backfire, but the idea is that you'll be through the checkout line and into your car before someone pulls out their cell phone and calls the cops. If you try it, though, you're on your own. Don't go overboard with the facial expression, and don't blame me if you get caught.
Happy Monday, folks.