Black Friday ...Wherever did they come up with that name for the day after Thanksgiving. I always thought it referred to the infamous stock market crash of 1929, the predecessor to the Great Depression. Oops! That was Black Tuesday. Black Friday referred to the stock market crash of 1873. Now it's a reference to the biggest shopping day in the year in the USA … although for some, that can be depressing in itself. Many retailers do most of their business in November and December and as such, move from being in the “red” to being in the “black” today. Hurray for the retailers!
Seems that we get to blame Philadelphia for popularizing this moniker. Back in the early 1970's, it was dubbed Black Friday by the Philly cops because of all the traffic and pedestrian mayhem caused by the crowds shopping on this day. It's typically a 4-day weekend (except if you work in a store) and everyone takes advantage of it to get a head start on their Christmas shopping. Stores lure you in with outstanding sales, free goodies, early openings and promotions up the wazoo. Where it's allowed, some stores open Thanksgiving evening, now dubbed Grey Thursday. Massachusetts' law forbids opening on the holiday, so retailers settle for opening at 12:01am on Black Friday. Of course, there are those retailers who advertise pre-Black Friday sales. Perhaps they should start in August?
While on the boat, this never mattered much. We don't do any Christmas shopping. But since we're back in the land of milk, honey and major consumerism for the holiday season this year, it's forefront in our minds. Even boat parts go on sale on this day. Lord knows, we ALWAYS need boat parts.
So, do we participate? Well ... yeah! We stood in line at Best Buy at 3am in the cold to buy a Toshiba laptop for $300 a few years ago. We've gotten DVD players for $19 and photo paper for $1. The buying frenzy overtook us though. The prices were sooooo good, we ended up buying things we didn't need.
We won't be heading out too early to buy our boat parts or electronics this year because we can buy on-line instead. You see, Cyber Monday follows Black Friday. People are out and shopping over the post-Thanksgiving weekend, but once they head back to reality on Monday, they've got time for the internet again. That's when cyber sales and shopping kick in … aka Cyber Monday. We'll make our buys then, in time for David to carry them back to Oz in a couple of weeks.
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Unfortunately, I just received a $10 off merchandise coupon from Kohl's in the mail earlier this week. Not $10 off $50, just $10 off anything in the store … even if it costs $10.01. $10 … just barely enough to make me want to get up early to use it. Lin got one, too. Kohls opens at 1am on Black Friday. Guess what we'll be doing?