Monday, November 28, 2011

A Small Black Friday Rant

Last Friday, I ventured out later in the afternoon with my son and daughter because we’ve been looking for a coat for my daughter for some time and thought we’d see what was on sale. That was a big mistake.

I pulled into the parking lot of the store we were going into, and spied a car just pulling out of a parking space near the doors. I hurried over and just as I was about to pull into the parking space the truck just down the row laid on its horn and the driver began gesturing and yelling through the windshield. It was obvious he was angry because he wanted that parking spot.

As he continued to make gestures and scream at me and honk his horn, I put up my hands, backed away and found another parking spot. FOUR SPACES DOWN.

Yep, he was putting on a big display of anger over a parking spot that was four spaces closer to the door. I think the saddest thing, though, was that he did all of that in front of children, not only mine, but his own and all the families in the parking lot.

I know this is going to sound kind of rant-y, but how ridiculous is it that we “kick off” the Christmas season by Black Friday events that are starting earlier and earlier, encroaching on the family time of Thanksgiving, and now include anger, pushing, shoving, people being Mace’d, trampled, and in general just treated badly all around the country. All for some “great deals.” (And I feel the most sorry for the people who have to work these sales and deal with these sorts of customers.)

It stuns me that people forget basic civility over “getting a deal.” The Christmas season isn’t supposed to be about getting stuff. It seems that some have lost the vision of what love and giving truly is all about.

I’m going to step off my soapbox today, and enjoy the Christmas decorations that are now up in my home and maybe sip a cup of hot chocolate and remember the good things in my life. And resolve right now to never go shopping on Black Friday again and to truly try to meet anger with kindness. Maybe I’ll make that my Christmas resolution.

Are any of you Black Friday shoppers?

12 comments:

Michael Offutt, Expert Critic said...

It's all about money. It never was about Christ or what he stood for.

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

And isn't that the saddest thing of all?

Stephanie Black said...

That is so sad that someone would show that kind of anger over a parking space. Sheesh!

~T~ said...

We spent a white Friday at the temple. Ahhh...

Debra Erfert said...

I don't venture out on Black Friday anymore. It's too dangerous. It does get cut-throat. I went Christmas shopping the two week previous and it was great. The music, the great sales . . .

Merry Christmas, Julie!

Janice Sperry said...

We went to the planetarium on Friday. Walking through the Gateway was crazy. We were going to do some shopping but my daughter left her money at home so we went Sat. instead. She left her money at home on Saturday too. Sigh. I do most of my Christmas shopping online. No crowds.

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

Stephanie, I know!! Ridiculous.

T that sounds heavenly. :)

Deb, thank you. I'm almost done with my Christmas shopping and after that experience, I'm glad!

Janice, that is sounding more and more like something I should look into. :)

Mindi said...

I quit going on Black Friday and try to have it done before Thanksgiving. That weekend is crazy to go shopping so I do my best not to need anything and we just have another relaxed family day at home.

Rebecca Talley said...

Nothing can drag me out into Black Friday. I refuse to shop that weekend at all. We spend the day after Thanksgiving putting up our tree and decorating and then spend the rest of the weekend doing family stuff. No stores for us. I'll gladly pay extra to avoid Black Friday.

Primarymary said...

I used to work every Black Friday at Shopko. I don't partipate any more. I spent this Black Friday on a plane to Boston.

Dede said...

Rant away!! I've never been a fan of Black Friday because of the angry crowds, but I admit I've never looked at it the way you described it before. This is the start of the holiday season, of "Peace on Earth, Good Will Toward Men", of celebrating the birth of Christ, and you are right...Black Friday is the exact opposite of any of that. Thank you for posting!

Jon Spell said...

My answer to the craziness: Amazon.com! Online shopping is the way to go! (Best parking, too.)

The one time I went for a deal on Black Friday (That's every Friday for you, Stephanie!) it was very traumatic and I resolved to not do it again.

It's sad how they keep pushing the time back farther. Several stores were starting on Thanksgiving Day.