About a month ago I had a dream, a nightmare really, that it was Christmas Eve and although we had tried to close the bookstore on time, there were still a lot of people hanging out in the stacks. Every time we tried to get one family to the cash and out the door, another family would come in. I pulled all the tables inside, pulled the gate across the entrance, and still, families kept pushing their way in.
After what seemed like 20 minutes of fighting with everyone to try to get people out so we could close down and go home, I finally managed to get the gate locked. But then the crowd started to build on the other side, people were pressed against the gate, putting their hands under the gaps and trying to grab things. It was like a scene from The Walking Dead, with mindless zombies throwing themselves against the gate trying desperately to get a last minute Christmas gift.
I woke up gasping for air, heart racing, with the knowledge that as ridiculous as all that sounds, it’s not far from the truth. Christmas in retail sucks.