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November 24, 2016

Pennsylvanians bought so much booze before Thanksgiving they crashed a credit card system

Alcohol Business
Pennsylvania Liquor Matt Rourke/AP

In this Thursday, July 22, 2010 photo, Jay Petrie of Solebury Pa., shops at a state wine and liquor store in New Hope Pa.

I get it, fellow Pennsylvanians. On top of the normal anxiety that comes with being surrounded by your entire extended family for the holidays, we just went through an election season so vile and contentious that seemingly every media outlet — local and national — is giving careful instructions on how to not bring up politics at the dinner table.

So yes, booze is very necessary. And despite recent and promising reforms to the state's archaic alcohol laws, you can still only get the hard stuff at state-run stores.

On Wednesday, a lot of you went to those stores. And then this happened, per the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:

Between 3 and 4 p.m. Wednesday, the number of simultaneous credit and debit card sales at Fine Wine & Good Spirits stores across the state surged and overloaded communications lines, forcing stores to switch to cash-only transactions, said Elizabeth Brassell, a spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board.

“It's rare, but it has happened before,” Brassell said. “But the good news is, we're doing a lot of sales.”

The system was back up within an hour, and a PLCB spokesperson told the newspaper the day before Thanksgiving is always a high-volume sales day — second only to New Year's Eve.

Hopefully tensions about politics between your friends and family die down a bit before Dec. 31. But if Hillary Clinton calls for a recount? They'll run out of champagne before noon.