The Black Friday Deal

4 minute read

Does the word 'deal' make you jump up and listen or are you bored of seeing it overused so much?

“C’mon, c’mon, can’t you hurry it up a bit, we aren’t all on the road for leisure you know”. It was one of those statements made to try and move things along, if not in reality but at least in Robert’s mind. Sitting in his car that he’d had since his mid twenties Robert knew that his yelling to himself was more a way to vent his frustration than actually get to the store.

His radio blared some of the songs of his youth and unconsciously they made him yearn for those carefree innocent days.

“Black Friday, what does that even mean, anyway? I knew I should have taken a different route.” Robert didn’t realise it but he talked to himself a lot, in fact when he was by himself he almost had complete conversations with himself!

He slammed on the brakes as the car in front of him came to an abrupt stop.

“What the ..”, he stopped in mid sentence as he realised the car in front had burst its tyre and he watched as a helpless looking elderly woman stepped out of her vehicle. Robert looked at his watch, he had an hour before the store closed.

“Oh my, I’m really stuck now”.

“Excuse me ma’am do you need some help?” Robert wasn’t really comfortable with being the hero type but he knew as he watched other cars going around the two stationary vehicles that it had to be him. The last thing he wanted on his mind was the image of a stranded old lady in the cold.

“Oh, yes…yes thank you. You know my Jerry would know exactly what to do”. She sighed and continued “Oh Jerry, rest his soul was really good with cars”.

“I’ll have to change the tyre, do you have a spare in the truck?” The lady ummed and ahhed before Robert suggested he take a look himself.

As he tightened the nuts on the spare tyre he looked at his watch again and thought, I’ve still got time. Mrs Canning as she had introduced herself to Robert had been talking non stop while Robert had been tending to the tyre and he felt he knew way too much about her in such a brief encounter.

She had been married for 40 years before her husband Jerry had passed away, she missed him terribly and found herself talking to him only to realise that he wasn’t around anymore. She had brought some fresh flowers this morning and she really didn’t care for the rude young man who had served her at the checkout. She was on her way to the hairdressers and then off to have dinner with Cybill, one of her oldest friends.

“OK, Mrs Canning, that should do it”. Robert signaled for her to get in the car and again looked at his watch.

“Oh, thank you so much, your mother would be proud of you for helping an old fool like me, I hope I haven’t kept you too long, I’m sure you’re a busy young man”.

Robert, not really one for receiving complements well, felt slightly awkward, didn’t say too much and tapped the hood of the car as he saw the women off.

He had less than half an hour to get to the store, park his car, find want he was looking for and pay for it. He had to be quick.

The store was overflowing with bargain hunters like him and he had to almost tunnel his way to the gaming section of the store. He felt a bit overwhelmed with all the youngsters riffling through the games on offer, gunting and high fiving each other as they found their prize.

Was he too late? Was the game still there? Then almost like a spotlight had been shone on the cover of the next chapter in his favourite game, Robert picked it up and checked the Black Friday label. 40% off, he had it, it was in his hands, the game he had been looking forward to playing for the last 3 months and it was going to be his.

In the corner of his eye he noticed a child looking frantically in amongst the large collections of games in front of him.

“Did you find it, Tim?” asked a gentle tone to the boy. “No, I think, there’s none left”.

Robert watched and listened as the Father consoled his son while making suggestions for other games he might like.

At the checkout, Robert felt good about his purchase, the money was well spent he thought.

“Hello, honey, you were gone a while weren’t you?” Ellen kissed him and held his hand and said “did you get it, then?”

“Hmmm, no, no, it was all sold out..but I got something else instead”.

Ellen looked at him puzzled. Robert was a man of many interests but gaming was on the top of his list. He seemed way too calm about not getting the game he had been looking forward to playing for the last couple of the months. Before she could ask him anything further, Robert handed her the bag and said “it’s for you…the universe has a way of showing us the important things in life and you Ellen are always on the top of my list”.