Did I Miss Something? (ms)

So, a show of hands now. Did anybody except me miss Thanksgiving?

Of course, we did not actually miss the holiday. The date came around as it was supposed to and even if we worked we all knew it. The turkeys were put in the oven with care later to be consumed along with a mountain of other foods. There was family for those lucky enough to have one and then football kicked off and the day was complete. Well, almost.

The newspaper that came to the house on Wednesday was probably the biggest of the year. Two rubber bands held it together so it could be shoved into the tube out front. The reason the paper was so big was not because there was so much news but because there was so much advertising.

I lugged it into the house and slid the rubber bands off each end. The paper exploded in front of me and sheets of it fell off my lap onto the floor. Just about every one of those pieces heralded door buster bargains on Black Friday. By the way, I don’t think I like the term “door buster”, too negative, too destructive. The term “blowout” is on the same order. I wouldn’t wish a blowout on my worst enemy.

Anyway, all those sheets of paper spread out before me seemed to suggest that if we didn’t shop on Black Friday it was as good as taking our money down to the sewer plant and throwing it in. The advertiser was convinced that if you didn’t shop at his store on Friday you would miss deals so good his competitors not only couldn’t beat them but they were secretly shopping there to pick up the bargains. Stores opened early this year since I guess merchants thought it inconsiderate to make customers sleep in tents out in front of the store. You could do Black Friday shopping on Thursday if you put your mind to it.

Now, I know there is a game to it all. Those who participate look on it as a part of the Thanksgiving holiday and its pretty much harmless fun unless of course you want the popular toy of the year and there’s only one left. That can be dangerous to life and limb. I never have understood why parents insist on fighting over some toy which will be forgotten by the child a day after Christmas, two at the most.

It seems to me that this year got a little out of hand, though, and we glossed over Thanksgiving so we might slide directly into Black Friday or maybe we could call it Twilight Thursday. Keep it up, I fear, and there will be no distinction whatever between the holiday and shopping. It’ll be eat up quick, throw the pans in the sink and lets go shopping. Why, look at the time, it’s noon already. I remember a time when the stores weren’t open at all on Thanksgiving and we couldn’t shop until Friday. How archaic!

–Mike Stevens

~ by admin on November 28, 2011.

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