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Racked Recap 2008: Top 5 Unending Lines

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With only a few days left in 2008, it's time to look back at a year of dizzying highs and crushing lows, of one major economic collapse and many minor shopping frenzies. Folks, it's the annual (two years running!) Racked Recap. This week, we'll be reliving our biggest and brightest (and saddest and darkest) moments beginning with an old Racked favorite, Unending Lines. Other things we'll recap: Best Salesfloor Clusterf*cks, Top Promo Stunts, Worst Window Displays, Most Delayed Openings, and of course, the Top Ten New Stores of the Year. So, let's begin.

5) Comme des Garçons for H&M Launch: The fashion folk went crazy for it in Japan, so we knew we were in for a helluva line for the release of designer Rei Kawakubo's Comme des Garçons for H&M collection.

4) Hermès Sample Sale: The line to enter the Hermès sale in September was unreal. The wait to enter, and shop fancy scarves, ties and accessories was over three hours. One brazen soul even attempted to cut, but after standing for an hour at his wrongfully-acquired space 'round the block from the entrance, he gave up and left. Clearly, he didn't want it badly enough.

3) Diesel's Dirty Thirty Event: A perfect storm of things that New Yorkers will queue up for: limited-edition merchandise, discounted merchandise, and free concert tickets. Diesel celebrated its thirtieth birthday by giving away a few thousand pairs of limited-edition, scruffed up $50 jeans and free tickets to a blowout event in Brooklyn. We came, we waited for three and a half hours, and we were entertained by employees dressed up in circus garb. The free tickets were gone before we, and a few hundred other Diesel fans, got through the door.

2) Ikea Red Hook Campout: Did you know that people will camp out in front of new Ikea stores to try to win free couches and POÄNG chairs? We didn't 'til one of the big, shiny blue-and-yellow boxes landed on our shores. So we hired someone to camp out on behalf of Racked, to be our eyes and ears on the ground. It was quite an adventure. Together, we learned that there are very specific rules for Ikea campouts: no fires (boo), no booze (hiss), timed port-o-pottie bathroom breaks (yikes) and NO SHOWERING (sonofa). Also, that Ikea is generous with danishes and games of hangman. The camp out lasted three days, but felt like three years.

1) iPhone 3G Release: You think one day of lines is bad? Try the month and a half over the summer when crowds descended daily upon Apple stores around the city for the brand's hottest new gizmo, the iPhone 3G. The camping started Monday, July 7th and lasted 'til the phone debuted Friday the 11th. And then, on the first day, stores sold out within a matter of hours. Same thing the next day, and the day after that. For more than a month we watched a familiar scenario play out at the city's three Apples: the zombies would gather at dawn for their shot at the phone, and a lucky few would walk away hours later with the precious, precious cell. The shortages finally ended in August.