LONGMONT -- Last year, 10 a.m. Thanksgiving Day just wasn't early enough to get the flat-screen TV that Christian Mucha wanted. So this year, he decided to get in line a little earlier.
Sixty hours earlier.
That's right. The 16-year-old Longmont High School student pitched his tent outside Best Buy at 10 p.m. Monday. By Tuesday afternoon, his was still the only presence behind the store's "Line Forms Here" sign.
"Last night, (the employees) saw me putting up the tent and they were laughing at me, I think," said Christian, who was 15th in line last year. The store opens its Black Friday sale at midnight Thursday, running through 10 p.m. Friday.
According to the International Council of Shopping Centers, about 34 percent of American consumers plan to shop on Black Friday, the start of the Christmas shopping season. Long lines and midnight start times are a common sight, and this year, an increasing number of stores have upped the ante -- and, in some quarters, the outrage -- by beginning their sales on Thanksgiving itself.
Even so, a Monday night start is a bit ambitious. Christian's mother, Marisol Mucha, admitted she was uncertain about the idea at first. In the end, she not only said "yes," but she also became his partner. The two are taking shifts in the tent and will be together at the store's opening in their try for televisions and laptops.
"Sometimes you need to be flexible," said Mucha, who was also with her son last year.
Christian acknowledges that it looks a little crazy. But he's enjoying himself. It even gives him a chance to get that Thanksgiving homework done.
"I'm a teenager, so it's just for fun, too," he said. "Instead of staying at home, I'm out here. It might be boring, but being over here, camping out -- it's like an adventure."
Scott Rochat can be reached at 303-684-5220 or firstname.lastname@example.org.