Black Friday can get nasty. Here’s how to survive.

Black Friday
Black Friday shopping rituals can lead to a dangerous herd mentality. Be careful out there!
(Credit: Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

If you look up Black Friday on YouTube, you’re bound to find a lot of videos with terrible titles like “Black Friday Fights,” “Black Friday Disasters” or “Black Friday 2012 Madness.” But the horrifying stigma of this day doesn’t seem to scare the thousands of brave Americans who voluntarily run with the big box store crowd, fighting for killer deals on last year’s food processor.

Like with all other extreme sports, you need to prepare for Black Friday shopping. We went to the best: Mark Hellmann Regouby. Is Regouby an experienced Black Friday shopper? Not really. But he’ll do you one better. He’s the founder of the travel company Running of the Bulls, Inc., which puts tourists up close and personal with the animals at the annual event in Pamplona, Spain. Here’s his advice for braving big crowds.

Before you go in
“We tell them … watch the Bull Run first so they can see how it works and understand the flow of the people and the bulls and make their strategy from overviewed conditions,” he says. This is where the aforementioned YouTube search for Black Friday videos will come in handy.

But the preparation doesn’t stop here. If you were planning to hit the bottle to take the edge off of Black Friday shopping, you’d better think twice.

“The No. 1 rule is to arrive sober,” Regouby says. “No. 2 is to get a good night’s sleep. No. 3 is to have 360-degree awareness. Always try to be aware of who is in front, behind and beside you. Really get a sense of being in the place.”

Surviving in the heat of battle
“The best runners always say you stake out your territory,” says Regouby. “You use your arms and don’t let anybody get too much in your way. Swing your arms and keep in your elbows to make sure you’ve got your own space that you need in order to run without tripping.”

This sounds extreme, but seriously, do you want that food processor or not?

If you go down
There have only been 15 deaths since the beginning of the Bull Run in Pamplona in 1910, but broken wrists and bloodied chins are the norm. According to Regouby, there are more falls and injuries because of humans tripping over each other than because of the bulls. We can, with some certainty, say the same about Black Friday, except that the National Retail Federation has only reported one Black Friday trampling death: In 2008 a Walmart employee was crushed in a stampede. So what do you do if you go down?

“The most important rule of all is if you go down, stay down. The bulls are actually talented at stepping over obstacles and as long as you cover your head and stay down and don’t move, they can plan to step over you.”

We can only hope the same counts for the herds at Best Buy and Macy’s. Actually, we’re going to say that the people waiting in the cold to buy stuff at discount prices are NOT talented at stepping over obstacles, so we advise just trying to roll to safety!

When you succeed
Regouby says that a run like the one in Pamplona is for people who want to be in touch with their own mortality and live their lives to the fullest.

“I have [run with the bulls] four times and it’s still pretty incredible,” he says. “You arrive in this huge arena and the sun hits your face and the air is fresh again, and you can’t believe you are alive.”

That sounds a bit like waking up way too early on Black Friday and shortly afterward hauling bags of discounted goods to the parking lot, realizing all of your arms and legs are intact, right?



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

US military tried, but failed to rescue journalist…

The U.S. military earlier this year tried to rescue journalist James Foley and other American hostages held in Syria ,but failed to find the captives.

National

Fate of captured beluga whales in hands of…

A Georgia aquarium went to court on Wednesday seeking federal permission to bring 18 captured beluga whales to the United States from Russia.

Local

After Eric Garner death, religious leaders meet to…

Interfaith leaders convened with city officials to discuss what the community can do to help dial down heightened tensions after Eric Garner's death.

Local

'Suspicious' Hamilton Heights fire caused by power strip:…

An extension cord overload caused the deadly fire in Hamilton Heights late Monday that killed a 15-year-old girl and injured at least 12 others.

Television

'So You Think You Can Dance' recap: Season…

And then there were six. It was a big night on stage as the Top 6 got to dance with each other, All-star partners and perform a solo routine.

Going Out

5 things to do in NYC this weekend…

FILM Lebowski Fest Aug. 22-23, 8 p.m. Various locations, Manhattan $20-$30, www.lebowskifest.com The Dude abides — for 48 hours to celebrate the 1998 Coen brothers classic.…

Television

'Doctor Who' personality profile: the 4 Doctors

When the time comes for a new Doctor, there's always some anxiety over the big question: Who will he be? The series owes its longevity…

Television

Billy Crystal to commemorate late actor Robin Williams…

  Comedian Billy Crystal will pay tribute to late actor Robin Williams at television's Primetime Emmy Awards on Aug. 25, the show's organizers said on…

NFL

Giants expected to work Corey Washington into first-team…

The day of reckoning for the Giants' fringe players will fall upon them Friday night against the Jets.

NFL

Jalen Saunders still unsure what caused car accident…

Jets rookie wide receiver Jalen Saunders spoke to the media Wednesday for the first time since his car accident, but he didn't say a whole lot.

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL defense (DEF)

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL quarterbacks (QB)

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Wellbeing

Metabolic syndrome could have a sugar link

Scientists in St. Louis may have found another culprit in metabolic syndrome, which can lead to heart disease and type 2 diabetes.  Uric acid is…

Wellbeing

Another way stress hurts your unborn baby

Mothers know to try staying calm during pregnancy, as stress has been linked to behavioral and developmental problems for their babies. But now, a new…