As I have mentioned previously on the blog, I am not much of a Black Friday Shopper. I have shopped on Black Friday a total of 3 times in my life when there were very specific items I was looking for, but truthfully I am just not a fan of being surrounded by large groups of super excited people (which is a huge disappointment to my husband who loves concerts).
In an effort to maintain my peace I have purposely avoided any Black Friday advertisements this year. I haven’t read the paper, turned on the tv or looked at anything online. I have been blissfully unaware of all of the hysteria.
I did however, become an accidental Black Friday Shopper.
Yesterday we attended a Thanksgiving dinner with some friends and ended up staying for several hours. My oldest daughter wanted to make her first gluten free pumpkin pie, so when we left the dinner I planned on stopping by the local Walmart to pick up some evaporated milk for her. It was 8:00 pm, so I figured that I was well ahead of all the Black Friday shopping which normally starts at midnight.
Imagine my surprise when I pulled onto the street where the Walmart is located and saw that not only was the parking lot completely full, but the parking lots of all of the adjacent stores and ALL of the grass surrounding the parking lot as well (which effectively doubled the size of the lot). It took us ten minutes just to find a way out of the parking lot.
Needless to say we did not get any evaporated milk.
I have to tell you that I am not a fan of Black Friday encroaching on my Thanksgiving holiday. There is certainly plenty of time before December 31st for shoppers to spend all of their money. While I realize that retailers need to make money to pay their employees, I miss the idea that a national holiday was a time to slow down and enjoy your family. I dislike the fact that materialism is crowding out the important things in life.
To all of you who enjoy the crowds and craziness, I wish you well. As for our family, we will be enjoying a quiet day at home and possibly venturing out to enjoy a local Christmas Tree Lighting (from a distance) :).
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I did not go out on Black Friday or Thanksgiving, but want to present another point of view. When I worked retail, working on holidays were on a volunteer basis, and frequently there were more volunteers than slots to fill because holiday working paid time and a half. Because of the somewhat limited hours that a store is open, there is a cap to how much a retail worker can earn, at their present wage, because there is little room for overtime. So, maybe consider the people that volunteered to work on Thanksgiving or Black Friday people that wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to earn a bit more, whether it be for Christmas, Hanukkah, a car repair or student loans.
Thanks Kerri–that’s a good point.
You couldn’t pay me to shop on Black Friday. I detest shopping under the best of circumstances, and dealing with those crowds would put me right over the edge. And I think it’s terrible that commercialism is starting to trump Thanksgiving.
Here in Germany people also got crazy, even though there is no Thanksgiving. Today is Saturday, we live close to the shops and consumerism is taking over. I was trying to go out and could not pass the shopping street without crashing into crazy people.
In Serbia things were a bit different. We would get up to 10 euros Christmass gift from our parents (book, scarf or even good shampoo that I liked), they were not giving anything to each other, and that’s it. Mom would make a nice dinner, we would spend evening just a four of us, and the next day we would visit our cousins and grandparents, but without gifts.
I couldn’t agree with you more. I honestly can’t stand Black Friday. I have worked retail for years and due to being a manager worked every single Black Friday during those years. I loath the day!
I have seen a ‘joke’ floating around on Facebook saying that only in America can we give thanks for what we have one day and then the next day go bash peoples heads in for the best deal on some new gizmo.
I hope you had a great holiday.
Thanks Felicia–we did. (and feel free to rant anytime 🙂 )
OH MY GOODNESS!!!
I am soooo with you on this!
I want a day for FAMILY and tradition and together time and playing outside and making healthy food (and some not-so-healthy!) and chillin’ out… and NOT shopping or thinking about shopping! For me, that’s the stuff that is more important than the “stuff”; )
Kim H says
I agree with you. I know alot of people enjoy this, but we had stores in our area that opened at 8:00 am on Thanksgiving day! Thanksgiving is family time for us!
That’s horrible — every purchase made at a retail store on Thanksgiving means that someone had to be away from their family in order to staff the store. I refuse. No amount of “savings” could get me to do that.
I totally agree! Thanksgiving should be sacred. No shopping here either, although I kept my two grandchildren so my daughter and her husband could go. I’ve just stayed in pj’s all day!
Jennie Stoll says
I am feeling much the same way. No black Friday shopping here. Its family day.