The Ghost of Black Fridays Past

It’s that time again! Don’t act surprised, we do this every year. For those with small humans in their lives, the holidays can be a time for anxiety, stress, and heighten blood pressure as store stock up and sell out of the items that are sure to make your little folks’ hearts skip a beat with excitement. We all put our parents through this nightmarish wild goose chase for plastic, stuffed, or video things, mostly before the advent of Amazon and eBay. I think my father is still indebted to the mob for the – not one, but three Power Ranger figures I received when I was seven-years-old.

So in the spirit of the holidays, I went around the W5 office to see what quests we put our loved ones through to obtain our favorite holiday trophies.


  Ian McDiarmid | Practice Consultant

“For Christmas when I was 13, I really wanted an Xbox, which came out that November. I told my mom I wanted it, but that I didn’t expect to get it since it would be sold out everywhere. On Christmas, I was so surprised when I opened up a brand-new Xbox. I was even more surprised to find out that my mom waited in line at a Best Buy starting at 4am to get it.”



   Robin Morey | Practice Consultant

“Ok, so there was a time that I was super into dinosaurs and I asked my mom for a dinosaur bone. I was young enough that this didn’t really seem unreasonable, but I still knew it was going to be hard to find. She went through a bunch of holiday catalogs from museums and places like that and actually got me a cast replica of a t-rex tooth. I was super excited! And I still have it.”



  Allison Savicz | Practice Consultant

“Well for me at age 6-8 it had to be the Crissy Doll with the pull down hair which was later updated to include the Talky Crissy in the early 70’s tho I was already too old for her by then!”




    Ryan Delaune | Practice Consultant

“My parents weren’t big holiday shoppers, so if we wanted something particularly hard to find, they would always give us the cash value and told us that if we could manage to save it, we could buy it ourselves when it was available. We rarely succeeded.”




   Grace Brown | Client Relations Consultant

“One present that really stands out in my mind was the year I got a Samantha American Girl doll. I mentioned wanting one to my mom several times, but thought it was a long-shot present. However come Christmas morning there she was with several outfits (the figure skater outfit and matching skates my hands down favorite) and books to go along with her. I still have my Samantha and plan to pass it down to my child someday.”



   Amy Castelda | Senior Client Relations Consultant

“As a kid I remember one year I really wanted a Tamagotchi. My older sister had one so of course I needed one. I wrote Santa to ask for it for Christmas. I’m not sure the trouble my parents went through to get it for me. It was a “Santa” gift meaning technically they couldn’t complain about it or else the truth would come out…”



    Martin Molloy | Partner

“I remember begging for what seemed like 20 years for an Intellivision system. When I finally got it I sunk into the black hole of video games”




   Tom Daly | Senior Partner

“First off, I’m older than most readers to this blog – I was a kid in the golden area of Saturday morning cartoons TV (’67-’77) heavily reinforced with pre-sweetened cereals; our parents could have cared less.

As an OC (only child) I religiously sat glued to Saturday morning cartoons until nearly noontime came and my mother screamed at me to ‘get dressed and get out of here!’ so she could follow her weekly routine of doing the wash and vacuuming (while smoking her Parliament 100s). One year, nearly every third commercial it seemed, was for Major Matt Mason. This was the era of Apollo and my dad actually knew some NASA engineers and military, so Major Matt was my guy. The best part of Major Matt Mason’s world was the Space Station – highly detailed and well built. It put me in another world.

I would literally beg, on my knees, every night at the dinner table, for a Space Station et. al. ‘Please, please, please, it’s all I’ll EVER want!’ I would whimper on the floor under the roast beef in a proselytized state. My father would tell me to get off the floor and the dog would growl, thinking I was there for his Milk Bones. This literally went on for months. In the meantime, I dutifully sat glued to the television, seated but a foot from the screen, waiting for the ad (, letting myself be drawn into Major Matt’s mission on the moon. I wished so badly to be there.

At Christmas, my aunt and uncle came over and dropped over a very large wrapped box. It was a Space Station with all the trimmings. I was ecstatic. It still probably ranks as one of the most emotional moments of my life; my greatest desire was fulfilled (probably the last time, actually). I guess my parents thought they would have appeared to have given in if they acquiesced to my pleas – easier instead for my mother to have her brother pick it up and deliver it late Christmas Day. A win-win-win all around: I was sated, my parents were off the hook, and my aunt and uncle came out of the blue to achieve hero status. I didn’t even see the connection until years later, and I couldn’t have cared less.

When my uncle was dying of cancer, years later, I thanked him for the Christmas present. He told me ‘they wouldn’t buy it for you.’ I never knew if he was telling the truth or he was still keeping the story alive, he was an old-school guy and perhaps thought it best for me to parse it out. I knew not to ask further. Regardless, we both smiled and left it at that.

Of note, I hear that off-and-on Tom Hanks has attempted to get a Major Matt Mason movie funded in Hollywood along with Roger Zemeckis, a $100-million plus epic based on Tom’s love of Major Matt’s world. Well, he can count on this Tom chipping in and getting lost for a few more hours should Mr. Hank’s actually build that Space Station.”

To gear you up for the tedious toy tracking tradition, Ebates has put together this fantastic infographic comprised Must-Haves “Deck the”Hall-Of-Famers.


The Most Popular Toys Through the Decades
The Most Popular Toys Through the Decades Created By: Ebates

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