Sales senility

Christmas Eve, 5.30pm
Ooo, here's an interesting newspaper article: John Lewis are starting their sale online in half an hour. Must dive for the voucher-shaped presents immediately – I sent detailed instructions to my aunt and cousin on how to buy John Lewis vouchers in the John-Lewis-less land that is Leeds. And investigate the birthday packages, three weeks early… ahhh. I feel simultaneously middle class and furtive.

6pm
Crikey, the website's died on its arse. But oh! Here are the Egyptian cotton sheets! Mmm, middle classness winning out over furtiveness now. Add to basket. Add to basket. Checkout. 'Scratch off security panel on voucher'… These vouchers don't have security panels. They only have holograms. Gentle scratch with a fingernail, don't want to wreck them if I have to use them in the shop… nope, holograms. Shit.

7pm
What a lovely chap on the John Lewis helpline. Here he is, spending 15 minutes of his Christmas Eve trying, but ultimately failing, to help me spend my vouchers. He doesn't understand what's happened either. These vouchers don't look like the ones on the website. Toss. I'm going to have to go to Oxford Street when it opens on Saturday. Middle class pretensions don't actually stretch to paying full whack for John Lewis Egyptian cotton sheets; must have them on sale!

27th December, 9am
Well this could be worse. Not much of a scrum outside the doors and here I am, merely strolling through the perfumery to the escalators instead of being propelled. Here are the sheets. Not the lovely coffee coloured ones I spotted online but they've all gone now. Never mind, these off-white ones will do for the cat to cover with fur and vomit (why am I buying these again? Oh that's right. Being middle class).

9.30am
Lovely checkout lady examines the voucher I'm not using. Can she swap it for something I can use online? She looks at the hologram and frowns, reads the back. "Scratch off panel?" she says, going off to talk to another member of staff, who doesn't bat an eyelid as she explains that the hologram is, actually, scratch-offable.

Ah.

Didn't expect that.

Never seen a scratchable hologram before.

John Lewis is too middle class for me.

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