Saturday, November 24, 2012

A Truly Black Friday

As Tim said earlier, we've been visiting family in PA, family that has television. For those of you who might not have followed this blog for a long time, we don't have television. We haven't had TV for nearly 11 years now, so being exposed to it for 18 hours a day for a four-day visit is...well...trying. Add to that the fact that it happens to be  Thanksgiving weekend, and you have added 500 repetitions of various Black Friday commercials, the Most.Annoying.Black.Friday.Commercial award going without any doubt to K-Mart for "the lights the lights the lights..." ad nauseum. This morning, the Black Friday commercial marathon was followed by Fox News' coverage of the Wally World Boxing Match, including incredible video of customers defining the Reason for the Season as beating someone to death over a flat screen.

I got an email from a friend today who said that the consumerism this year was "making her skin crawl". While looking for a way to describe my feelings I realized I couldn't describe them any better than that. I've been without the dulling effect of TV for so long that I was shocked by the lack of caring, the greed, the inability for even basic civility during the holiday season. If not then, what hope do we have for January second? I was relieved that my children agreed to forgo gift giving this year except for a Dollar Store grab bag drawing between the kids. I was feeling a little smug, happy to be headed off the grid, until I saw the Black Friday ad for West Marine. West Marine?  Really??

I guess as long as I'm buying parts for the boat I can't be totally off the grid, but as the holiday progresses, I will reluctantly make my contribution to consumerism by buying the next boat part to finish the boat only so we can get out of Dodge (sorry watching too many old Westerns on the AMC Black Friday Western Marathon), and my goal is to exhibit kindness and civility in all my purchasing transactions, smile broadly at all sales people no matter how rude they are to me, and donate routinely to the red kettles.

Happy Holidays!

1 comment: said...

We haven't had TV for close to 20 years, since our daughter was young. We have never missed it, although sometimes we do feel out of the loop when others refer to TV shows we've never seen. Commercials were the first thing I didn't miss, and I still don't. Now we watch some shows on the computer, but due to the rise of commercials when watching that way, we are cutting that short as well. The holidays are much more fun when I don't have to focus on buying crap for people who don't want it and are going to find it a burden. I am burdened, as well, by receiving said crap. Maybe it's a sign of middle age and being in a position to have to deal with all the stuff that's piled up over the years.
Anyhow, you are not alone in avoiding anything like the Black Friday (black, indeed) mess we have each year. There's nothing I want badly enough to brave that kind of mess of humanity.