After yesterday’s piece on Thanksgiving Day it seemed natural to follow with a companion article on another US tradition which has made its way to these shores: Black Friday. Being the day after Thanksgiving, this is a public holiday in about half of US states and many private employers give their staff the day off too. It marks the unofficial start to the Christmas shopping season, and has been part of US tradition for well over 50 years: the name was first given to it by the police in Philadelphia (Philly PD, as they’re known in Body Of Proof!) some time around 1960, to describe the pedestrian and traffic chaos that it caused. Judging from some of the scenes on the news today it is an apt name, more for what goes on inside stores than on the roads! I much prefer to do whatever shopping I can online, as it is so much easier, and this sort of thing confirms I’ve made the right choice for me:
I never knew lingerie was that tempting to fight over – unless it was to get it off!
Amazon is credited, if that is the right word, with introducing Black Friday here in the UK a few years ago. Since then, their own promotion has grown enormously and I’ll admit to having bought from their offers already – but I didn’t have to fight anyone! It was only a matter of time before other major retailers followed suit – Walmart owns ASDA, so they were an obvious candidate for this, but my inbox today has been full of Black Friday offers from just about any company I’ve ever bought from. It stands to reason, really. They are in business to make money – our money. They may even be selling their offers at a loss but hope to convert us into buying more from them that has less or no discount. That’s capitalism for you!
It may be hard for you to believe but I like to think of myself as intelligent and, being the proud owner of an MBA in Marketing (1981!), would hope to be able to see through the rampant commercialism. But I do like buying goodies. And I need to get some presents for Christmas. It would be silly to turn down today’s offers and pay more for the same things another day, wouldn’t it? Maybe I could just take a quick look? You never know what you might find that you didn’t know you needed, or that you hadn’t thought of as a gift. It kind of makes sense to try it, right?
It’s decided then! I’m off to launch myself into the frenzy, from the safety of my armchair, of course. Happy shopping, and I hope to see you tomorrow, if you haven’t been trampled in the rush!