Black Friday? Bah Humbug!

I don’t get Black Friday…Don’t understand the rationale for the whole event.  Stand in line, pushing and shoving, trying to avoid being trampled, arguing over the same piece of merchandise, at drastic reduction.

And, it’s supposed to be “fun”…sort of a way to test one’s “merchandise-acquisition mettle.”  Can you beat the opposition for the same coveted piece?  Can you stand in line for hours to get what you came for?

I know groups of people who get all suited up, as if it’s an annual competition; they wrestle in these store lines to procure their items; then they go out for some type of celebratory breakfast, after,  rehashing the highs and lows of their experience.

To me, nothing merits that kind of investment, on my part.

But then again, I don’t wait for a table, at a critically-acclaimed restaurant, either. No, I’m never one who calls in ahead of time, asking for a reservation a week or two from now because the dining spot is so popular. Nor am I the one to arrive at a restaurant, only to wait in the lounge an hour or two, chatting up friends while a table is freed up.

To me, no dining spot is that important.

After all, I eat at Ruby Tuesday’s…

But I know supposed quality and price work for other things, too, and I admit:  I don’t get that, either. For instance, if I drank wine, it’d be a garden variety white wine. There’d never be anything worth 100’s of dollars by the bottle, in my humble, non-wine expert estimation.

No bouquet…no complexity of the grape could command a price, in league with a new Samsung HD television set (that’s what some wines command!) 

The same goes for designer bags…What’s so special about YSL?  Many of them appear, to me, to be made of an almost-plastic material, while the insignia seems a continued brazen attempt to own the item, even after some customer has purchased. 

Shouldn’t that bag display the owner’s initials? Why should the owner pay the exorbitant price of the bag AND (by wearing it) insure that the designer gets even more publicity?  Seems there should be monetary kickback here (like “You buy the bag and display and I’ll give you a discount), but there isn’t. 

Today (and for some time,) I’ve noted merchants’ names all over garments, in bold print.  The other day, a young man strode down the street in a shirt that had COKE written all over it, along with the image of the can in the background.

Companies used to have to pay for that walking billboard activity, but now, it’s apparently an honor to wear the stripes (or logo/image) of one’s favorite retailer.

Just another thing I don’t get.

But Black Friday?  The rush to get mangled in crowds, fighting for parking space, shopping at 12:00 midnight following Thanksgiving Thursday’s supposed family fun festivities, to wreck all in a blistering pace of buyer frenzy. 

And now adding insult to injury (and I do mean that in the literal sense,) retailers seek to fan the “fun” out to Wind-Up Wednesday and Salvage Saturday that, of course, spills into Sunday, giving customers a full,  5-day (and night) run at shopping nirvana, before the next work week begins.

I’ll sit all that out, too, but I do recognize:  I’m out of sync with the buying public.

But do tell:  Are you in those crowds on Black Friday? Is it like a runner’s high, when the endorphins kick in and you get a rush?  I want to understand what makes this phenomenon work because I just might be missing out on something really big and THAT would bother me (only kidding!)

Now, want to go as can of Coca Cola for next Hallowe’en?…Here’s a link to their on-line store, to get costume of a Coca Cola can, Diet variety,  at that.  So you pay cost of product, along with taxes and shipping to get their advertisement across….”Only in America”….

And speaking of costumes, here’s what my family did on Black Friday…Instead of facing crazy crowds, we hopped on our brooms and headed for Salem, Mass., where we found a shop for costumed picture-taking.  There, our little coven stood around a faux stew against an orange and black-flecked “sky.”

Such fun and we ‘saved’ ourslves the insanity…the push…the crazies of Black Friday mobs.  After all, almost no one was in Salem.  Their Witch Holiday was last month.

About admin

A lifetime teacher and realtor who's now a published writer, Colleen Kelly Mellor is a humorist first, ever aware of the thread that connects us all. Her works have appeared in the WSJ, Providence Journal, and CNN and NY Times-acclaimed medical blog,, to name a few. All material on this blog is exclusive property of the author and cannot be reproduced without this author's express written consent.
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