Christmas Shopping In Fresno 2011

Once again I am fortunate to be able to make the Christmas trek back to my hometown of Fresno, CA.  With most all of my Christmas shopping accomplished a few months again Yuma, I felt somewhat leery about tackling what little shopping that was left for my grandkids.

Nevertheless, there was just a small portion of my Christmas shopping that was left, intentionally I might add, to be completed when I arrived in Fresno.  As it worked out, I was able to complete the toy portion of the shopping for Cole and Hannah with my son, Jeremy.  That, in and of itself, was lots of fun,and it served and enormous purpose!  I figured that who would know better what my two grandkids wanted for Christmas than their Mom or Dad?

I had scored a huge advantage!

As we entered into the “Kids Magic Kingdom”, better known as Toys R Us, the holiday shopper came out in both Jeremy and myself!  As we grabbed the ol shopping basket, it was obvious to me that we both needed to get tough and immerse our selves into the “holiday shopper/survivor” mode for this particular chore!

There were hundreds of carts trying to navigate the crowded lanes that encircle the rows of toys all stacked in their places.  The shopping carts were all jockeying to try to get the lead so that they could land one of their prized toys.

In actuality, watching the shoppers wheeling their shopping basket around the store resembled one of my favorite things to watch, Daytona or Talladega!  It was like a pack of race cars drafting each other until they reached the destination of their sought after toys!  Then there would be a sling-shot move to get into the lead, and grab that coveted toy before the other shoppers could have their chance!  Once we got into “the race spirit”, you could feel the adrenaline rushing through your veins!

I told Jeremy that I needed to be in control of the basket.  My reasoning for assuming control of the shopping basket comes from my past experiences.  I spent 2 1/2 years living in NYC back in the early 1980’s.  That experience of navigating through the sidewalks of New York City, walking shoulder-to-shoulder in that sea of humanity known as Manhattan, the experience of challenging the taxi cabs, as well as all the other car traffic in NYC at the intersections and cross-walks, I felt would give us an advantage navigating through Toys R Us!

Additionally, I thought that my knowledge of NASCAR, the bump drafting, the two car tango, and the knowledge of pulling off a sling-shot pass in a timely fashion would allow us to survive, grab our most coveted toys, thus allowing us to conquer the madhouse and even become a premier Toys R Us shopper!

Sports fans, it was game on!

With those thoughts in place, away Jeremy and I went, shopping cart, and shopping list in hand.  Initially I tried to be somewhat polite.  However, within just a few minutes of trying to navigate within the store, it was obvious that I must don my worst acquired NYC attitude, couple that with my NASCAR two car tango, and bump drafting techniques, it was time for full blown toy shopping!

Yes folks, we took no prisoners in our tour through the store.  As we aggressively steered the buggy on our shopping circuit. Occasionally we would bounce the cart off the rows of toys, other buggies, and now and then a few feet and toes that  had gotten in our way.  Nevertheless, never loosing our momentum!  Sorry about that!

Reflecting back on that shopping experience, it brings to mind the NASCAR commercial where the four businessmen bring back their rental car, badly wrecked with the side view mirror dangling.  The driver, in great NASCAR driver/crew chief form stated that, “overall he had a great car”.  “However, the front end was pushing in the turns”!  At that point, their boss slides his car to a screeching halt only after impacting their car.  His car, too, looked like it had been racing at Bristol Speedway, really bent, beaten, and crumpled up!

That my friends is what it was like shopping this week at Toys R Us for the last minute Christmas toys for the grandkids!  Overall, we had a great shopping cart!  However, at times it would be pushing through the turns, consequently, causing me to hit toys, other shopping carts, and run over a few legs, feet, and toes!

Maybe the other shoppers need to check into getting an Aflac or a Nationwide insurance policy!

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!