[media-credit id=11 align=”alignright” width=”225″][/media-credit]The moment the clock struck 10 p.m. and Walmart started selling its doorbusters Thursday, Sam Watt heard a loud scream and a crash as a stack of thousands of DVDs hit the floor.
“Everyone just started running for stuff. People just went crazy,” Watt said. “I thought I was going to die.”
As she walked to the checkout line of the Riverdale Walmart, she said she saw people wrestling each other for bed sheets and walking with stacks of DVDs as tall as themselves.
“I don’t even think they had seen half the movies that they grabbed. They just grabbed the movies because they were $1.86,” said Watt, a Weber State University senior, who will graduate from WSU with a nursing degree this December.
Two hours later, Watt walked out of Walmart with her graduation present — a Microsoft laptop for nearly half its original cost.
“I was pretty excited. As soon as I got home, I opened it up and looked at it, and it was really shiny and really pretty and brand-new,” Watt said, laughing. “If I had gone there and I didn’t get the laptop, I would have felt like I had wasted my time and I could have been home sleeping. The wait and crowd was totally worth it.”
Watt started waiting in line for the laptop at 9:45 p.m., but she said there were people near the line’s front who had skipped dinner to start waiting as early as 5 p.m.
“(The laptop) was a really great deal, so I stood in line for it,” Watt said.
With Black Friday deals frequently cutting prices in half and sometimes by as much as 70 percent, it’s a prime time for college students to shop for Christmas gifts, Watt said.
Even so, Watt said she isn’t willing to fight for merchandise like she had seen other shoppers do.
“I’ve never seen someone fight somebody for a pack of sheets,” Watt said. “I thought that was ridiculous. I guess people bring pepper spray or people fight. I guess people get bloody knuckles. I just don’t think anything’s worth that. If someone had done that with my laptop, I would have said, ”K, take the laptop, I’m leaving. I don’t want to get injured over a laptop. I’ll try to find another one.'”
Watt said she only endured the chaos because the laptop was a great deal, and she really wanted it. Otherwise, the crowds aren’t worth it, she said.
“If there’s not something that you don’t really, really want, don’t go out (on Black Friday),” Watt said. “It’s not worth it unless there’s something that you absolutely want and it’s absolutely a great deal.”
All her other purchases waited until after the crowds had died down Friday afternoon, she said.
Brandon Rampton, a former WSU student, was on the opposite side of the chaos, managing Body Evolution at the Layton Hills Mall from midnight Friday to 10 p.m., a 22-hour shift. Rampton also witnessed a scuffle between a couple of women fighting over a product. He was back to work Saturday afternoon.
“I don’t want to do it again next year,” Rampton said. “I’m drained.”