CAUTION- Do this BEFORE upgrading  iOS or before getting a new iPhone
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Confessions of a Black Friday Junkie

Submitted by on November 17, 2009 – 8:54 pmOne Comment

I am a black friday junkie.  My best friend says that’s an understatement. Let’s just say I’ve seen the front of many electronics/office supply/clothing and toyblackfridayqueen stores at 4am.  The idea of dragging yourself out of bed at 4 am after stuffing yourself with turkey stuffing may sound unpleasant but the rewards are great. With the right attitude it is actually a lot of fun.

Black Friday is a treasure hunt, plain and simple.  It’s about finding those things you wanted, but that were too expensive to fit in your budget.  You can pick up all types of items at a fraction of their retail price. You can cut your gift budget by 60% or more.  Really!  If you are buying from chain stores, you can get your shopping done in a day and still have enough money to feed the extended family for Christmas dinner.  How about getting gifts for co-workers and friends?  Five dollars can buy you a twenty dollar gift.

For me, it started when my son was about 2 or 3 (he’s now 16).  Our local KayBee Toys had “doorbuster” deals.  I bundled up (it can be cold at 5 am) and waited in line for the doors to open at 6am.  I knew it would be crowded so I didn’t stress out about the line.  It was just part of the experience.  People (mostly moms) chatted, and shared what they were excited to purchase.  I got new ideas.  “Wow, Legos are half off! I’ll have to check that out.”  Once inside, I found the toys that I most wanted to buy; then I checked out other toys as I stood in the line that meandered through the store.  I remember that I spent well under $100 for toys that would have cost well over $300. My big score that year was a football-shaped toy chest that cost about $15, instead of its retail price of $75.

In the past 12 or 13 years, I have only once missed an early morning black friday, and that was the year that I was being interviewed on radio stations across the nation about black friday.

How do I put up with the cold morning long lines, hours (yes, sometimes hours) in line to purchase items, occasional pushing and shoving, and rare but possible disappointment that I didn’t get there early enough for the “limited quantities?”  I go prepared, and again, with the attitude of a treasure hunter.  It’s great if you can rope a friend into going with you, but there are plenty of people there alone too.  You can make friends, compare finds, and share a thermos of coffee.  In the coming days I will discuss the art of Black Friday survival and preparation.

Black Friday is not as dangerous as the news has made it out to be in the past. With the hundreds of thousands of people out on a black friday, few have ever been trampled, or even hurt.  These events took place years ago. Since then, most stores have put in safeguards (which I will discuss in the next days).  Still, remember to use your common sense.  No deal is good enough to hurt another or get hurt.  Step aside, and stay safe. You are on an adventure.  Have you ever seen a good treasure hunt without a little drama from others after the same treasure?

My friends know me as a bargain queen.  And I seem to reign on black friday. (Ask me about the $1.67 Cashmere sweater from Bloomingdales…)

Come back the rest of this week for how to get the best bargains and have fun while doing it!

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