Ready or not, here come the holiday craziness days: Enjoy the season, and have a safe and happy Thanksgiving

By John Toth

It’s that time of the year again, the beginning of the spending season. Oh, yeah. It’s also called the holiday season.

I hope everyone spends a lot of money the next few weeks because retailers have gone all-out to get your attention, and they need to bring those stores into the black.

And, we’re trying to set a record for the most number of people in line at 3 a.m. on Friday. (Not really.) I may be wrong about this, but I have heard that if you’re one of the first three customers Friday morning, a national retail chain will pay you to buy something. Maybe I heard wrong.

I am not exaggerating much. Retailers need your business, and they’ll go the extra mile to get it. But, for some items, we don’t have to stand in line at 3 a.m. for a chance to land a bargain.

My wife, Sharon, and I recently took advantage of one of those early door-buster specials without even leaving the office. We bought it on-line from a national retailer in Lake Jackson.

We needed a dryer. The old one has a bum motor. I spent $65 locally on a service call only to find out that the motor was gone. Then I had to decide whether to get a new motor or a new dryer.

Sharon and I were leaning toward getting it repaired until we started looking on-line for the holiday specials already available and found a dryer for $10 more than what it would have cost to have the old one repaired.

I paid on-line, and they threw in free delivery to my house. What a deal. Yeah, I know it’s a low-end dryer, just like the old one. But if I can get at least five years out of it, I’ll be ahead of the game.

If the dryer had to break, the timing was just right. The only better way to get one of these is by writing to Santa.

It’s not all the dryer’s fault. I would still have the old one had my circuit breaker box on the side of the house not gone crazy and started turning off different sections of the house at random.

It decided that the dryer really didn’t need all of those 220 volts and cut it back a little, then completely off. The the dryer retaliated by burning out its own motor. It’s a conspiracy, I’ll tell you!

The electricians had a good time making fun of the old box. They have an electrifying sense of humor.

Let’s resume with the Thanksgiving buying theme. Everyone needs to do their patriotic duty and go out there when the prices are low and the stores are filled with bargains, and shop ‘til you drop because we want to give this economy a boost.

I’ve already done my part. I bought a new dryer. Now it’s your turn. My wife and daughter, I’m afraid, are planning to be really patriotic.

Get ready for plenty of great television deals, although those advertisements don’t tempt me that much. However, my younger son, Bobby, found a great deal on a 55-inch HDTV. That’s almost like being in the movies.

I seldom watch TV. I watch computer. I mostly listen to TV, and if anything, I watch Netflix on my laptop.

I still have old-fashioned TVs, but all I can watch on them now is snow.

How about some of those new video games? They are coming out with all kinds of stuff, but again – not interested. I’m not good at playing video games. The last time I tried, I kept wiping out on the first level of Mario Brothers.

Bobby, who is in the Air Force and is serving right now in Afghanistan, is a video game addict. He can even beat the game without cheat codes.

Bagram Air Force Base, where he is stationed, recently held a video game tournament, and Bobby finished third. He won a new X-box and two new video games. Great. That’s like giving a bottle of whiskey to an alcoholic. I would have given away books for prizes. Then, only X-box fanatics who also are bookworms would have entered (if there is such a combination).

But, let’s resume with the Thanksgiving theme. Oops. I’m out of space. Why don’t I just wish everyone a very happy and safe Thanksgiving weekend? See you next week. We’ll be talking about...something.