Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Weekend Assignment #244: Black Friday

Well, this Assignment could be boiled down to one word from me, but that's no fun.  Karen asks:

Weekend Assignment #244:
The day after Thanksgiving in the U.S. is widely believed to be the biggest shopping day of the year. Do you typically shop for holiday gifts on that day? If so, why? Is this year any different in that respect?

It's more like "crazy shopping people day". I have the benefit of writing this after Black Friday so I can mention that someone was trampled to death at a Wal Mart. Not to mention two people shot at a Toy's R Us. Although there are some doubts about whether or not that was shopping related, or a different kind of stupidity.

Anyway, no, I don't go shopping on Black Friday. I don't like shopping on a normal day; there is no way I'm going when the stores are bursting with people. I don't like crowds, have I mentioned that before?

The last two years I have stayed home (well, slept really) while Jenn has gone out to do the shopping. The amount she saves is significant; I just couldn't do it myself. I did give her some time to herself afterward this year so she could rest. Aren't I a nice guy?

Sometimes I will do the Black Friday shopping online. I bought Jenn an iPod on Black Friday last year, or maybe two years ago. So I saved a whole 11 dollars on it, but I got free engraving and shipping.

What I want to know is, when did Black Friday start? Or should I ask, when did it get so crazy?  I worked in retail right after college, and I don't remember all this craziness. Maybe I have a bad memory, or the type of store I worked at didn't have good sales. I think maybe I forced the memory from my mind. It wasn't my favorite job that I've ever had.

Extra Credit: Is there a particular bargain you are pursuing this year? If so, what is it?

Usually, there are a few things my wife really wants to get on Black Friday but this year there wasn't really any specific great bargain. I think there was a kitchen set for our daughter that was half off, but that is about it. The sales didn't seem as great as everyone had thought. Or hoped.

Anyone else hate, or love, Black Friday?


Karen Funk Blocher said...

I don't think you're wrong about it being less of a big deal in years past. I remember it being a famously busy day, back when I worked in retail, but not a crazy day. I don't think stores did the one day only bargain thing that much until recently.

dc said...

I hate Black Friday. I've never gone shopping that day and I never will. I absolutely hate crowds and most of the deals aren't even worth it anyway. Just wait until shortly into next year and you'll pretty much get the same deals.

Florinda said...

The Toys-R-Us shooting happened in my neck of the woods (SoCal, go figure), and they have determined it as a different kind of stupidity and not shopping-related. The insanity at Wal-Mart was something else all together.

I like shopping, but not crowds. I went to the supermarket on Black Friday - no one was there. People probably weren't even ready to look at food yet.

Mike said...

Karen: I'm glad I'm not losing my mind. I didn't think it was this much of a big deal a while back.

DC: You sound like me. that's good! :) Of course, if you need the gift for Christmas you might need to go out a little earlier.

Florinda: That probably would be a great day to get groceries. I never thought of that!

Martha said...

I think you forced the memory from your mind - like we all try to do with horrible things! I can barely make it through grocery shopping without losing my mind. No Black Friday shopping for me either!

Mike said...

Martha: You may be right. It wasn't a fun time in my life. :)