IKEA vs. Apple Store: Which Is the More Hellish Shopping Experience?
Photo by Håkan Dahlström via Flickr cc
If you combined The Purge with Jingle All the Way, you'd not only have a very dead Sinbad -- let's face it, he'd be the first to go -- you'd have Black Friday.
And as thousands of bloated Americans finish their last slice of pumpkin pie with a sticky fork, thousands more will be finishing the elderly lady who jumped in between them and the last iPad with a rear naked choke.
See also: The Six Worst Places in Broward
But what, exactly, is the most hellish place to shop for bargains during the holiday season?
Clearly there are two contenders: The Apple Store and IKEA.
Most mentally stable citizens would rather go on a beer run in Chernobyl than deal with that shit.
So let's pit these two contenders against each other in a five-round battle to see which sucks more.
Photo by Wesley Fryer via Flickr cc
Round 1: Customer Service
Ding, ding, bitches!
In round one we'll compare and contrast the costumer service of these two stores. In case you didn't know, IKEA is a Swedish company, and Apple, of course, hails from the good ol' U.S.A.
There is perhaps no better way to illustrate these two country's differing philosophies than to examine the customer service of these two very different stores.
In one corner: The Swedish lifestyle, one of cold solidarity -- where ice and a pet whitefish named Hampus are a boy's only companion through a dark existence of hiding from wolves -- is reflected in IKEA's customer service.
You shall retrieve your furniture alone. Lug it to the cashier alone. Go home to your studio apartment where you will assemble it, once again, alone, because all your friends have convenient dentist appointments.
And then, just when you are mere steps from finishing your desk and the taste of victory starts to swell in your cheeks, you are dragged back into the chilly abyss when you discover you have misplaced a very small but very important screw.
There is no God, you realize as your furniture collapses onto your ankles.
In the other corner we have the Apple store (aka America, bitch). The land of excesses.
300 blue shirt-wearing employees dart around the store, doing their darndest not to help you. They all have iPads, which we assume they use to communicate your location to each other so they can all ignore you as a team.
And if all that rejection doesn't do the job of letting you know how inferior you are to them, they've decided to call themselves geniuses. Oh, and if you accidentally leave your Facebook account logged in at an Apple store, there's a 74% an employee will make your status: 8===)
This round isn't even close. Apple has the worst customer service.
Photo by Chris Dlugosz via Flickr cc
Round 2: Food
At either of these stores, you're bound to be there for a while. Which means you're bound to get hungry.
IKEA boasts an array of authentic Swedish cuisine. But, let's acknowledge the elefant (Swedish for "elephant," y'all) in the room: IKEA's meatballs once tested positive for horse meat. But let's also not ignore the other elefant in the room (because it's staring at me, and it has an erection): why is that a bad thing?
We have weird rules in this country about what we can and can't eat. Pigs? Sure! Dogs? No way? Cows? Of course! Librarians? How dare you!
But why exactly are we so against eating horses? They're not even cute! They look like an angry wizard cast a spell on Pauly Shore. And they're not even nice. Look what one did to Christian Bale! (New Times can not confirm the man in the video is in fact Christian Bale, though there is a slight resemblance and Christian Bale would totally try and pet a wild horse).
The Apple store (despite its misleading name) doesn't actually sell food, and even a pelican would have trouble swallowing the new generation of iPhones, so it looks like you're going hungry.
"But wait," you say. "You can always just walk downstairs and go to the Galleria's Sbarro!"
Sure, and while you're there why don't you just order a cockroach linguini you imaginary idiot! If I'm eating cockroach, Joe Rogan better be standing next to me with a $50,000 check.
The decision is in on round two. Horse meat is delicious and underutilized, and the Apple store has a depressing menu of cold metal. Apple store has worst food.
Photo by Robert Scoble via Wikipedia Commons
Round 3: The Product
Now it's time to consider what we're actually standing in line for.
IKEA's furniture has developed a cult following. Mainly because it's the cheapest furniture you can buy without sending an anonymous Craigslist vendor several pairs of used underwear.
Apple sells technology. Unlike IKEA, it is very expensive
IKEA's Scandinavian furniture is practical and efficient.
The use of Apple's technology often requires help from a row of employees known as the "Genius Bar." They are not practical or efficient. They are named things like "Edgar" and will ask you if "you have tried turning it off and on."
IKEA furniture comes unassembled, and must be put together by your dad, unless you forgot to call him on his birthday, in which case you're on your own, buster!
Apple technology is assembled in a factory in China that has barred windows to prevent the frequent suicides its deplorable working conditions have made so common.
BUT your futon won't help you find Kim Kardashian's sex tape in only .21 seconds.
Round over. Apple uses porn to its advantage and pulls a last minute upset over IKEA.
Round 4: The Crowds
Trying to decide a winner in this one is like trying pick between your two children. Of course, we'd choose you, Caroline, but we can't say that out loud.
There shall be no winners in this round. Everyone loses.
Photo by Consumerist Dot Com via Flickr cc
Round 5: Parking
It all comes down to this: The mall parking garage vs. IKEA's parking lot.
The mall parking garage is crowded, but it's big, and there are some hidden spots for those who know where to look. Also, with all those dark corners it's very easy to murder someone and get away with it if they steal your spot.
The best way to get a spot in the IKEA parking lot is to slowly follow behind a customer as they leave the store. While this does make one feel a bit like Dexter, it proves effective. Unfortunately if you do have to kill someone for poaching your spot, you'll probably have to stuff the body in your trunk to get away with it, which is really going to make it hard to fit your new dresser in your Fiat.
But we can't ignore the fact that the founder and creator of Apple, Steve Jobs, frequently committed one of the most unforgivable acts in parking lot crime throughout his lifetime.
And for that, IKEA wins this round, leaving The Apple store the loser, and once and for all declaring it the more hellish shopping experience.
But really, you should just stay away from the holiday madness. Even the best place to shop on Black Friday is like finding the warmest prison shower. It might be more comfortable than the rest, but you let your guard down for a second and you're getting shanked.
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