If you can call it a happy day, that is.
A day where the upside is saving handfuls of money from purchasing items at a deep discount.
The downside is long line-ups – determined by time, in hours or up to a whole day – the competition after doors-open, the race to the most wanted item that you just can’t win, the disappointment for being too slow and missing out, the unrealized realization that you might not have even wanted the item in the first place; you just convinced yourself otherwise because it just had such an attractive discounted price tag you could resist.
Black Friday might be one of the ugliest days of the year. When caution is thrown to the wind and people reveal the worst about what they’re capable of in the name of buying and saving.
Don’t get me wrong, I love a good sale as much as (or more!) than the next person. My go-to saying when grocery shopping during BOGO week is “what sales! What sales!” – a line I borrow from my mother – but at what cost am I willing to pay to join such a frightful scene?
I partook in a Boxing Day Sale event once. My sisters and I got up at 5 am the morning the sales were on, drove for an hour into the city to join a lineup of nearly a hundred people outside Future Shop. The wait was only an hour or so in the cold and I think only a select number of people were allowed in at a time. The funny thing is, I don’t even remember what I bought.
So was it worth it? I might say yes, if only because it was a learning experience. The wait was relatively short, the weather was fine, nobody got hurt, and it was in a time before Black Friday was even a thing, so the hype of big sales wasn’t the hysteria it is today – before people got trampled to death in favour of a sale.
The benefits of Black Friday, for me, aren’t worth the hours spent waiting in lines seeing the anxious look on the faces of people who would push and shove an old lady holding a service dog in a wheelchair just to grab a bargain. It’s not worth the feeling of entrapment that comes with being in a crowded store full of panicked people who have the same instinctive need to buy and escape as you do. It’s especially not worth promoting the concept that is Black Friday, where stores go all-out to one-up the competition by opening an hour earlier, or the evening before, or even a day in advance, just to win the first round of sale-hungry consumers.
No. Black Friday to me will be the one day I will blackout the malls and stores.
There. Now I can have a happy Black Friday.