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Black Friday: Stories from the battle front

Hello my financially stable and sound Cobbers. Oh wait. It is the week after Black Friday and Cyber Monday. So if any of you are like me and felt a compelling urge to invest in some new skinny yoga pants, dresses, shoes, electronics, DVDs and various other items instead of paying off your Cobber ring, then join the club. We are making shirts. Or maybe bracelets.

I am sure many of you got carts, tore through some piles and obliterated your competition (i.e. old men and women and their various small child companions.) I did not. Let me tell you what I did on Black Friday.

I worked at American Eagle. I cleaned up after kids like you tore apart my perfectly folded tables. I listened to moms try and figure out their kid’s sizes. I listened to high schoolers have actual conversations about which skinny jeans they should get (extra skinny or just regular skinny).

I heard debates on the merits of peach over salmon and of hoods or the lack thereof. I had to listen quietly while parents placated children and then turn around and placate the adults over 30 who still shop there, and assure them that yes, those pants will work, and that maybe the top should be yellow instead.

I worked from six in the morning to noon and wanted just to understand why anyone would think shopping in this environment would be a good idea.

To me, the idea of Black Friday is an idea that a Social Psychologist thought up to determine those in our society who would body check a little kid in Walmart to get a $1 copy of season one of “Vampire Diaries.” To put that many product-hungry adults, who invariably bring along a child, just seems like wild danger.

It does not surprise me the amount of injuries that have happened on Black Friday, like the woman who was trampled to death a few years ago, the woman who was shoved to the point where she miscarried or the woman who had been trampled and is now a paraplegic. These types of accidents are insane to me and can only happen when entirely too many people are permitted to act as a mob does, rioting and causing permanent damage.

Instead, I participated as an associate first and then realized that a majority of the stores were offering the same deals for the rest of the week, or at least the rest of the day online. Yes, I spent money, but I bought online from stores that are reliable and had the same price honored 12 hours after the largest group of shopping zombies had left their checkout line. I also participated in Cyber Monday on Amazon, buying some cool little gadgets like a video camera. Instead of having to interact with a plethora of individuals who do not know how to stand in line, I had to click.

I do not know about you, but I would much rather continue not being a part of the largest reason other countries think we are insensitive and materialistic. At least, not in person.

One Comment

  1. Thea Gessler Thea Gessler November 30, 2012

    Great story Katelyn! Way to hit on some big issues facing our society.

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