Ryen Cinski ’22
With Thanksgiving just around the corner, premature thoughts of Christmas are beginning to surface, signalling an entry into the holidays. To many, the holidays are about family: sitting down with those you love by the fire and enjoying each other. To others, the holidays are about the gifts. In order to prepare for this holiday gift giving, many people participate in Black Friday. Black Friday takes place on the Friday following Thanksgiving each year, and can be described as absolute chaos. The day is so hectic because stores often have large sales, causing people to be very passionate about their participation and outcome. This year, the sales will technically begin on November 29th, but despite having this set date, many stores will adjust their hours as early as Thanksgiving.
For someone who works in retail (Dick’s Sporting Goods for me), Black Friday is the absolute worst. It is a day that comes with many downsides for workers, some being messiness, disrespect, and the overall insanity of the sale. No one wants to work Black Friday, because as I said, it’s the worst. Although the sales do allow many individuals to better prepare for the holidays, it’s quite sad that stores have begun to adjust hours earlier and earlier. To ask someone making minimum wage to work on Thanksgiving is sad. Thanksgiving is about family, just like Christmas, and for some it is the only chance per year to have everyone they love in one place.
This pushing back of dates implies that we are moving further and further from what matters. We are ditching family and tradition for an opportunity to get a new TV at a discounted price. Not even – as one would still be able to get that same deal on that TV no matter what night the Black Friday sales were taking place on. Why make the sales, late hours, and insanity start so far before the actual set date?
While this does take away from some people’s valuable time, it also takes away some of the magic of the event. Although I personally have never participated in Black Friday on the consumer end of things, I do know the allure of a good deal and the feeling of accomplishment one has when they find a good sale. This night into morning was so special because it was contained within a certain time frame that comes once a year, a there-then-not type of thing. When stores begin the festivities days before actual Black Friday, where does the fun go? The anticipation?
While I do love shopping very, very much, I just don’t feel the need to participate in Black Friday 2019 unless I’m working it (please pray for me). As a retail worker I know the horrors associated with the whole ordeal. As a family member, I know the irritation of being pulled away from everyone else and some good food. As someone who always wanted to go shopping on that one special night but couldn’t because they had a bedtime, I fail to see the fun in this watered-down version of Black Friday that we have now.
If you do choose to participate in Black Friday 2019, please remember to be respectful to workers, to be considerate of your fellow shoppers, and please, I can’t stress this enough: don’t wrestle someone to the floor over that damn TV.