I used to get up early and enjoy Black Friday shopping with my family and friends. Oh, the thrill of the hunt! We would sit around with the flyers and create our Shopping Map/Plans after Thanksgiving dinner. I would sleep over at someone’s house (since I live the furthest away), and we would get up at 4am excited and ready to go. I did this for several years during my college years, purchasing the necessary household items at attractive prices. I can still tell you the bargains I found – blankets, dishes, small electrics, etc. Slowly over the years, I’ve grown disenchanted with this idea, and I’ve been Black Friday shopping less and less. I guess I realized, what do I really NEED anyway? We’re married, we have a nice home, our mothers spoil us, and we both have steady jobs to buy the things we need when we need them. I’m sure if we had children, things would be different.
Then, this year, something I never thought could happen actually happened. My mother, who is a manager at a retail store, was told that they would be opening on Thanksgiving and that she would have to come in and work. Since Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, I was devastated when we had to cancel it. My mom had to work overnight on Thanksgiving, then again on Black Friday. She also has to work on Saturday, by which time I am sure she will be a walking zombie. She says she is too exhausted to try and do Thanksgiving this weekend, and she just wouldn’t enjoy it. We’ve decided to push off celebrating until New Years.
So how does this make me feel about retailers, shopping, and Black Friday? PRETTY ANGRY!! I did not go out shopping last night on Thanksgiving, and I truly wished no one would have. I wished that the retailers would feel silly opening their doors and paying their employees time-and-a-half while Americans did the right thing and stayed at home to spend time with family. Unfortunately, as I saw on the news, a lot of people hit the shops last night. My mom says there was a lull between 1am and 5am at her store. Perhaps things will change next year, but the pessimist in me thinks it won’t, and this will become the acceptable holiday tradition.
So this year, I will save my money and spend the day at home with my husband and my dogs instead.