If you’re an American consumer who is consumed by “the deal” and you’re reading this, evidently you survived Black Friday. Congratulations. There were many who ventured out into the morass along with you who were not so fortunate – they didn’t make it through those dark and dastardly 24 hours.
Many left their homes as their friends and loved ones soundly slept in their beds, and have never been seen again. And the only tangible memory they’ve left behind to be remembered by? It will arrive in a few weeks when their final credit card bill shows up, listing the stores where they were last seen alive and charging.
But if you’re reading this while sitting on the commode in your bathroom and you’re not up to your ankles in brackish water, you may not know this but you’ve also made it through Brown Friday. Congratulations. Your local Roto-Rooter plumber tips his cap and plunger to you.
While many Americans spent the better part of Friday slugging and slashing, and scratching and clawing at each other to get ahold of the last 387-inch (diagonal) LED-LCD-HD-3D TV on sale for only $7.97 (plus tax), it’s likely that none of them were Roto-Rooter plumbers, or any brand-name plumber.
I’d bet the homestead if you were standing in line outside a Wal-Mart at 2:30 a.m. on Friday, you didn’t see anything like this in front of you. However, if you did, you’ve got to ask yourself: Couldn’t I possibly have found something better to do at this ungodly hour?
It isn’t because plumbers are more mentally competent than all the other kinds of working stiffs in this country. It’s just that while most people were spending money, plumbers were making it. Best day of the year for them, evidently.
On second thought, that does make them more mentally competent.
In a story posted this week in the online newspaper, The Huffington Post, incoming calls for service to the largest plumbing services company in North America are 50 percent above average on Black Friday.
That’s a lot more clogged drains, jammed kitchen garbage disposals, and upchucking toilets.
Oh-oh say can you see? By my john’s early light …
And that’s a lot more moolah for your friendly neighborhood plumber. Which leaves him absolutely no time to be standing around in a crowded shopping mall or big-box retail outlet battling for sale items. They answer to a higher calling.
According to a Roto-Rooter press release, plumbers often put in 18-hour days to help customers through this time. “The day after Thanksgiving is the toughest day of the year to get a day off from work. We’ll answer every call until the work is done and as late as necessary,” the release states.
But why? What makes the day after Turkey Day so special for these specialists of your pipes and sanitary appliances?
As usual, you can blame it on … the relatives. It seems the addition of all of those visiting, eating and personally-relieving humans can put a real strain on a home’s internal waste management system.
Even if you’re a Republican, putting more butts on the pot can strain even the toughest household plumbing system.
Add to that an “unusual buildup of Thanksgiving-related wastes.” That includes pumpkin entrails, turkey dressing and bones. And all those potato and onion peelings are the worst, a veteran plumber told the story’s writer.
“They’re slippery and can form a paste. The things can swell up in a pipe.”
Yummy. Or gummy. Speaking of gums, plumbers say they often find everything from diamond rings to false teeth in toilets during the holiday, according to the article. Seems you just never know what’s going to be spinning around in the bowl.
“Cousin Eunice, where did you put Aunt Thelma’s scalloped-potato-rhubarb-feta-tuna casserole? I don’t see it here on the table.”
“I flushed it.”
“You did what?”
“You heard me. Something I’ve always wanted to do every Thanksgiving for years. Better to dump it now rather than for me to dump it later, if you know what I mean.”
“But what about the crock it was in, the one she made with her own gnarled and arthritic hands? Formed from the clay she pulled from the banks of the brook behind her house, fired in her very own kiln? She even hand-decorated it with a minimalist-folk art-cubist interpretation of the first Pilgrim-native American soiree. Where’s that?”
“Ditto on the flusho. It went down with the shit, I mean, ship.”