...stay home. The end.
I am so sick of Black Friday. Its gotten to the point that companies don't even feel the need to be subversive. The advertising is so transparently manipulative, preying on our desire for something more meaningful, but urging us to participate in a frenzy that is undeniably materialistic.
Case in point: Xbox commercial. Girls gets Black Ops, finds out its multi player (implying that it is an activity that will allow her to spend time with her loved one). Cut to later and she is now having a snowball fight ala Black Ops and she is having a great time. The end result is that she is spending quality time with her loved ones having a snowball fight outside. We are left with this great, heartwarming feeling that perfectly marries tradition and modernity. But, wait. Wasn't this about a video game? Why can't we just cut out the products and go straight to the good stuff?
The dark shadow of "Black Friday" has descended over the entire holiday. Thanksgiving should be a day where we are given reprieve from the daily grind and nothing more is expected of us than to stuff our face with food and watch some football. This years, stores are open on Thanksgiving, not even having the decency to wait until its actually Friday. Thanksgiving meals are starting earlier and being cut short so people can be the first to hit the sales.
I, for one, will not be participating in Black Friday. It's not that I'm opposed to a good sale (I'm not) or even that I'm opposed to consumption (I'm not, strictly speaking). I am opposed to companies taking away what few and precious good moments we have left in life. I am opposed to the idea that quality time being thankful with family can somehow be replaced by stressful mad-rushes to the store where we step on our fellow man in order to get to that flat screen TV first.
My family probably thinks this is hilarious because 10 years ago I was raging a war against Thanksgiving (exploitation of the Native Americans...why are we celebrating this?). But, if we look at this day simply as a holiday from our jobs, a time to slow down and have a great home cooked meal (maybe one of only a handful we share throughout the year), it doesn't seem all that evil. In fact, I want that quiet time with loved ones so desperately that I am willing to shed convention and protest the institution of Black Friday. I hope you will join me, if for no other reason than to send a message that 50% off "doorbusters" are awesome, but need to get in line behind quality time (...and football).