Christmas is a joyous time of year for the retail industry. A time for reviving our flailing national economy by spending money on crap we don't need that won't make us happy or make up for the love our parents never gave us. You see, aside from the obvious exploitation of midget labor that occurs this time of year in shopping malls and toy sweatshops up north, Christmas and the assoicated office parties, meaningless football games, and inevitable drunken insanity bring out the worst in people. How do I know? I used to work in retail.
Working in retail sucks to begin with. It's one of the lowest paying jobs ever, and you have to deal with some of the world's dumbest and most obnoxious morons. I've heard people say that everyone should be required to perform military service for their country, but if everyone had a chance to work retail, particularly around the holidays, there would be peace on earth because NO ONE would act like a rude jackass because Best Buy is sold out of your 4 GB Ipod Nano.
People who shop during the holidays, and particularly this week, are retards. They fall into two distinct catergories, procrastinators and satanic assholes. Procrastinators are a minority. They are nice people who just put shopping off until the last minute and fully understand their plight. They do not take their procrastination out on the people who are attempting to help them fullfill their capitalistic holiday fetishes. They understand that they have put themselves in this position, and take full responsibility.
Satanic assholes, on the other hand, are often people who have procratinated as well. The difference is that satanic assholes blame you, the guy making $4.05 a week and taking it up the ass from the general public while middle management drinks eggnog and bangs their secretary, for the fact that they procratinated and don't have the creativity to come up with a meaningful gift on their own. Satanic assholes are the vast majority of last-minute holiday shoppers.
I have had many encounters with these people. Here is a helpful guide to identify if you or someone you love has become a satanic asshole:
1) You call a store and ask them to hold the last (insert popular Christmas gift item) for you. First of all, we sold out of (insert popular Christmas gift item) 3 weeks ago. If we did have it, we would be selling it to our customers, and not just hanging on to them for the occasional dickface that expects because he or she can operate a phone book and telephone means that entitles them to said item.
2) You treat the staff of a store poorly, because of your own shortcomings as a gift-giver. Forgot to pre-order that Xbox 360 for your kid in July? It might be your fault. It might be Microsoft's fault for making like 3 consoles for the entire world. But you can bet your ass that it's not the checkout girl's fault. If you do take this out on the people at Best Buy, stop, because you are a complete ass clown.
3) You have a myopic obsession with one particular item. Every year, whether it's the media or our obsession with wanting what we cannot have, people go nuts over one or two specific toys or gifts. This year, it's Xbox 360 and Ipod Nano. You can't buy this crap anywhere, unless you're sleeping with the stock clerk at Circuit City (see # 2 above). And that lack of availability only seems to encourage people's insanity about obtaining that one item. We live in a society where we literally have thousands of possibilities (according to Best Buy). Why focus on the one thing that is unavailable? Because you suck, that's why.
4) You pay $1200 for said SUPER GIFT on Ebay because of your procrastination. The black market economy that surrounds re-selling hot items on Ebay is ridiculous. If you are one of the jackasses bidding, you're only encouraging the stupidity. I don't give half a donkey turd if you do have the money. Wait 3 months, buy the item for regular price, and spend the difference on coke and whores or children's charities or something.
If you or a loved-one meets meets any of these criteria, seek help in the form of a swift ass kicking at the hands of a group of disgruntled retail employees. People have asked me why I drink so much, and I always say "I've never quite recovered from working holidays in retail." For the rest of you, Merry Christmas.