The holiday shopping season is upon us, and it's got to be one
of the most miserable times of year. It's the one time of year I
become a total hermit, let my hair grow long, and eat whatever
random objects I can find around the house to survive. Because
going out there and dealing with all those assholes is just not
worth it. It's never worth it. But if you find that you have no
choice in the matter, that you absolutely HAVE to do it, it
doesn't have to be completely unbearable. There are ways that
you can make it tolerable, perhaps even enjoyable. Because
fucking with other people is always fun. So here are a
few ways that you can spice up your holiday shopping this year:
Get your hands on whatever big noise-making toy is in high
demand that year (i.e. Tickle-Me Elmo) and go to the store with
your own copy of the toy smuggled in a backpack. Head to
whatever aisle the toy can normally be found on to confirm that
they don't have any in stock, and then hang around on the next
aisle over. When you hear people on the aisle next to you, hit
the button so that your toy makes its signature noise. When the
people come around the corner all excited, thinking that they're
still going to find the toy, head to the next aisle over and
repeat the process. Try to time your crossing over to the next
aisle so they don't actually get a look at you. Keep repeating
the process, and see how long you can get them to follow you
around the store.
Look for local postings by scalpers who are selling the hot
new video game console (PS3 or Wii) for FAR more than it's worth
(grocery store entryways are a popular place for these kinds of
postings). Rewrite the flyer with all of the same information,
only change the price to a value slightly LESS than the
suggested retail. The scalper asshole will get flooded with
eager phone calls, only to find those same people pissed off
when they find that they've been misled by false advertising.
They might even get a surprise phone call from the authorities
for suspicion of stolen merchandise!
Find one of those storefronts that has a guy dressed up like
Santa ringing a bell and asking for money. Dress up like Jesus
and stand on the opposite side of the door with a collection
plate. Make sure you glare at Santa disapprovingly, and
encourage people to come up and donate money to the REAL meaning
of Christmas. Then after you've collected enough, go inside the
store, buy something nice, and on your way out be sure to show
Santa what you've just bought.
This one will probably only work on Black Friday, or some other
day that there's a major high-demand release. Find a line of
people gathered outside the store, and bring a microphone and a
video camera if possible. Then "interview" the people in line,
asking them the most annoying, stupid or personally invasive
questions you can. Drive as many of them as you can to the point
of anger, but stay just out of reach of their swipes. Most of
them won't risk giving up their spot in line to come after you.
And if you taped it, you should have a funny video to show your
Walk into the electronics section of a store, pretending to
talk on your cell phone. Make sure you exclaim loudly "What?
They just got a shipment of Playstation 3's at the Best Buy
across town? I'll be right there!" Hang up excitedly and then
make a dash for the door. See how many suckers decide to follow
you out and rush all the way across town only to find nothing
but disappointment waiting for them there. Of course, the egg
will be all over your face if they really DID get a
shipment of PS3s at the Best Buy across town, but that's a risk
you'll have to take.
Dress up like a
werewolf and hide on the bottom shelf on some aisle that has
lots of large boxes on the bottom row that can conceal you (a
toy aisle is good for this). Whenever people come down the
aisle, burst forth from your hiding place, sending the boxes
flying into the aisle and growl menacingly and pounce at them.
Carry a fake cattle prod (or a real one, but don't blame me
when you get arrested) and whenever a bunch of slow and/or fat people
are blocking your way, as they inevitably will, because slow fat
people love to form a phalanx and stand in the middle of a
high-traffic walkway looking confused, poke them in the back
with the cattle prod and make a lout "Bzzt!" noise. If they turn
around to glare at you, shout out a loud "Hyaah!" If you own a
cowboy hat, you should be wearing it.
Find a really packed aisle, and crowd-surf.
Dress up in
clothing from another historical era (i.e. medieval or far
future) and walk into a store looking completely bewildered. Ask
people around you lots of questions in-character, and when you
finally go up to the register to pay for an item, try to pay for
it in either ancient or futuristic currency.
This is another
one for Black Friday or a new-item release. Dress up as a
character from Star Wars or Lord of the Rings or another one of
those popular movie franchises that all the nerds dress up for
and line up with a bunch of people waiting outside the store.
Talk excitedly to the people around you about how you can't wait
to see the movie, how great it's going to be, etc. Ask them what
they're looking forward to most about the movie. If they tell
you they're not there to see a movie, glare at them and tell
them they have the wrong line. If possible, make dorky use of a
catchphrase from the movie to express your displeasure toward
them (i.e. "I find your lack of faith disturbing" *pinch
So there you go! Try some of these on for size and you're sure
to have a more "jolly" holiday shopping experience than you've
ever had before!
If you enjoyed this piece, be sure to check out:
An Open Letter From Santa!