Black Friday is an Anachronism

With every passing year I’m more and more amazed that anyone continues to brave the wilds as it were, partaking in Black Friday shopping in person.  My wife still does for some reason, though I had thought she had finally decided to give it up this year.  Right up until she told me a couple days ago that she’d made plans to go out shopping with her sister and niece.  And like every previous year I woke this morning to be greeted with complaints about long longs, crowded stores, and a general misery that I certainly would never accept.  At least this year she didn’t have to stand in the rain before she got into the stores she wanted to get into.

In years past Black Friday was a day in which it was truly important to stand in line for hours.  Black Friday shopping offered the best prices on some of the most popular items, but the time has long passed where you had to actually leave the comfort of your own home in order to take advantage of those.  Every major chain I’m aware of offers the same special pricing on their online stores, and offer an array of delivery or pickup options.

Walmart, for example, offers three free-shipping alternatives including one which enables you to pick up directly from your local store.  JC Penny offers free shipping on orders over $25 or free shipping to a store for any amountKohls has an array of shipping charges based on purchase total.  But don’t take my word for it, look around.  All chain store are virtually similar.

I’ll leave you with just one example of how silly it truly is to participate in person on Black Friday.  My brother in law and his wife wanted to purchase a new XBox 360 for their son and had been discussing standing in line at Walmart this morning around Thanksgiving dinner yesterday.  Walmart would be dropping the price of the XBox $100 today and they wanted to take advantage of that.  From my wife’s description of our local Walmart this morning I’d be surprised if he could have gotten one even if he stood in line, but even if that weren’t true I just looked at Walmart online and at Amazon.com.  Both stores have the same deal online and I didn’t even have to get out of bed to order one!

Welcome to 2012 (almost) folks.  It’s a glorious place.  Live in the moment!

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