That's about how I would describe my experience today during the much-heralded Golden Ticket Giveaway. I work near the boston common, so I went to the Boylston St. TD Bank location. I got there around 11:45, and waited patiently in line. I was pretty close to the front, down the block but not all the way down the block. I watched as the rest of the block got filled up by more people interested in getting chocolate and hopefully tickets.
Then the end of the block filled out at around 11:50, and more and more people were showing up. Nobody was around to tell the line where to go, so it turned back around, going back down the block (like a big "U"). The line continued to grow, going back up the street past the branch and beyond. I couldn't say how far, I was near the front. Finally, 12:00 rolled around and the line started moving. I probably moved up 10-20 feet and then it stopped and people came out and started talking to the crowd. I was still too far away to hear them at first, but people started walking by saying that the bank was out of candy bars.
2 minutes into the giveaway. That they had been heavily advertising for days. On Boylston st, one of the more heavily-trafficked streets in Boston. At first we heard conflicting information. The police started dispersing the crowd, saying there were no more candybars and everyone should go home. (They then realized that it was the middle of a workday and most people were on lunch, and said to go back to work.) I stuck around for a little, because they had said that they would start up again when enough police showed up to work the crowd, but the Police had other ideas.
The police officer who told me to leave about 15 times (sorry, dude, but I wanted one of those bars) told me that they had been warned 3 times to get their own security to control the crowd, but refused to do anything.
I called the branch location at about 1:20pm today, and they confirmed that they would not be giving out any more candy bars for the day. The woman who picked up the phone sounded pretty exasperated, I feel bad for her.
I'm sure that the event down at the garden was/is wonderful, and the other branch locations seen to have run out of bars. But the management at this branch screwed the pooch on what should otherwise have been a fun time.
So from now on I will definitely continue to just call it The Garden. That'll show 'em, right?
Thursday, July 16, 2009