Monday, November 19, 2012

Two Days of Holiday Deals are Enough

OK, so we're Americans. We love consuming. Black Friday is the embodiment of that. It's a day the stores put everything on extreme sale, and thousands of Americans, filled with turkey, violently shop against each other.

A little background according to Wikipedia. The term Black Friday in the current context, was used by employees of retailers in 1969 to describe the traffic jams, and general mayhem that happened on the two busiest shopping days of the year, which happened the two days after Thanksgiving. Essentially, it was a day the average employee mourned, like a funeral.

There was a moment, when some tried to put a positive spin on it, calling it Big Friday, but ultimately the "Black" stuck. And from what I can tell, every year, has somehow upped the ante on being more ridiculous.

Then, around 2005, marketing departments decided that Black Friday just wasn't enough. What about online retailers? There was already a noticeable trend of sales being up for online retailers the Monday after Black Friday. So why don't we make it an event?

So, using their marketing heads, Cyber Monday was born.

So we had Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and to a lesser extent, Black Saturday. Three days marked on calendars to consume. These are holidays onto themselves, where instead of celebrating Christian saints, we raise Tickle-Me-Elmo above our heads, and offer the sacrifice of blood and dollars just to get our hands on it.

Are three days good enough? Most would say yes, some would say no.

Walmart, Sears, Toys R Us, K-Mart, and Target decided this year that Black Friday would start right after Thanksgiving dinner. 8 and 9 pm on Thursday, these stores will open to the greedy masses. A day meant to be spent with family, eating great food, being thankful, could now potentially see people standing in line for a $89 Nintendo Wii, eating a turkey leg, bathed in the glow of the Walmart sign.

But, that's not all. Online retailers decided that they were going to take the rest of the week. Just this morning, I woke up with an email from Amazon and NewEgg highlighting their 7 days of deals to countdown to Cyber Monday.

That would be like preparing to get a physical by having a doctor touch your naughty parts for the seven days before the physical. Does anyone else not see how insane this is?

I'm fine with having a day or two of deals. I really am. I like to sit on my big comfy chair Saturday morning, coffee in hand, laptop in the other, and read about the mom who headbutted a father over the latest Justin Bieber perfume.

But can we have our holiday back? Can we just enjoy being with family and having a day or two off of work?