Cheers or jeers for Black Friday? Love it or hate it, everyone seems to have an opinion—including The Chicks. Back away from the leftovers and spend it with us!
I’ve camped out on a cold, hard sidewalk exactly twice in my life. For tickets to Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the U.S.A. Tour and a 1986 Boston Red Sox/New York Mets World Series game. Was it worth it? Sure. But those days are gone (now they hand out much more civilized wristbands, or you can buy online). And I can’t muster much enthusiasm for staying up all night, let alone outside, for a flat-screen TV.
I guess I’m something of a social shopper. I usually leave a few items for the last couple of days before Christmas on purpose. I used to live in New York City, where I could only shop a little at a time, after work. And it was fun. There was something magical about the lights and the music and the smell of chestnuts. Plus, last-minute shoppers tend to be friendly, laid-back types—even under pressure. So okay, what does my family do on Black Friday? Not much. We sleep in late, browse through all the piled-up catalogs for gift ideas, and at night we watch the madding crowds on the eleven o’clock news. Right after a marathon viewing of National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.
I truly believe that Black Friday got its name because it brings out the darkest side of human nature. Stores turn average human beings into crazed consumers by offering about three TVs for pennies, then once they hook the shoppers, the deals disappear and people fill their carts with items they could easily buy for the same price on Sane Sunday. I’ll be spending my Friday making a list of anything I need to pick up on Small Business Saturday. Supporting local mom and pop stores that make my neighborhood a neighborhood? That’s a promotion I can go crazy for.
As someone who’s always preferred a good zig when the rest of the world is zagging, I have a firm commitment to stay far, far away from stores for pretty much the entire Thanksgiving weekend, with the possible exception of ducking out to get gravy makings to spruce up the last of the leftovers. Not only does the thought of all those crowds make me want to hide in my basement until the madness has stopped, there’s something ironic about people rushing out to buy things they don’t need one day after being thankful for what they’ve got.
But what’s great about the day after Thanksgiving is that there are almost no demands. The email goes silent. The phone doesn’t ring. There’s not even a need to cook, since, you know, leftovers. So I love spending the day after Thanksgiving on a special project, whether it’s reading an entire book in a day, immersing myself in a craft project, or cleaning out that aforementioned basement. This year? I’m barreling full speed toward the end of my second book, so I’m going to spend the day writing. If all goes well, I’ll get to serve up some justice along with the last slice of pumpkin pie.
How will I be spending Black Friday? Two words.
So, friends: what are your big plans for the day? We hope they include dropping us a note in the comments!
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