Did I ever tell y'all how I got an iBook for just $50? It was one crazy day! Come to think about it, that was just three years ago this month!
These iBooks came from the Henrico County School District, which loans all their students notebook computers to use during the school year. They had recently decided to upgrade with new Dells, and needed to get rid of their existing iBooks. At first they sold off a bunch of their used iBooks to the students, and then planned to sell the last thousand off to Henrico residents.
This sale was promoted, then postponed, then moved from the West End to the East End at the Richmond International Raceway. That's a pretty scummy part of town, so I knew the competition would be fierce! I borrowed a voter ID card from a friend at work so I could pretend that I lived in Henrico in case anyone asked.
I had my husband at the time, Kevin, drive me down there to drop me off. There were lots of people in line, so I started to doubt my chances of getting my iBook. The way they had it set up, you had to be let through the gate, then it was a wide open free-for-all until you made it to the building where they actually sold the iBooks.
Kevin dropped me off across the street from the main gate at about 6:40 a.m., and I sat there rather than finding my way to the back of the line. There were only 5 or 6 cops available to control a crowd of several hundred, who were all waiting patiently in line at the gate, so I knew I had a good chance of skipping the line.
As the gates opened I ran across the street, braced myself, and dove into the crowd as they attempted to file in. I used my elbows as a battering ram, and jammed my way into the mass of people with all my might! I had pretty good leverage and momentum, which sent about 50 people to the ground in a stunning domino effect!
Due to bad planning, this calamity sent one old lady to the ground on the right, then an old man went down to my left, and one fool almost crushed her own child before her man rescued it from the stroller. I still wonder what kind of a moron brings elderly folks and babies to a riot!? People around me started hitting each other with folding chairs, and I noticed one dude was even smart enough to bring a helmet!
After shoving my way through that plug of humanity, (and stepping on what I think was a thigh) it was just a matter of running speed. I was sure glad I hadn't waited in line all morning like the rest of those idiots! Besides the nasty heat and humidity, people were fatigued from waiting since 1 a.m. Later on I learned that one bitch even pissed her pants just to keep her spot in line! And after the initial jam at the gate there was a girl hopping around the hot pavement on one flip flop, asking people if they had seen the other one. Craziness!
After the 100 yard dash the more motivated of us got up to the actual building where they were selling the iBooks, and the whole crowd had to bottleneck again. I used a combination of rib jabs and titty punches to force my way up to the door. I was able to keep folks from shoving me from behind by kicking my heels backwards into shins, crotches, and what-have-you. Before I knew it I was up in there!
Once inside, things were relatively organized and quick. With the outside crowd held at bay, the workers allowed me to test and purchase a laptop at my leisure. It was so quick and easy that I even made it to work on time that morning! Thanks Henrico County!
Of course, everyone was self-conscious for our local image as news of the stampede was broadcast 'round the world. Everyone shook their head and cast their judgement on Richmond. Luckily for us, Hurricane Katrina showed up, the rioting began in New Orleans, and suddenly we weren't lookin' so bad!