Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Black Thursday

As we count down the days to Getmas, the biggest festival day of consumer engorgement in America's ritual year is approaching.  That day, of course, is Black Friday.  It's the day set aside for shopping, when most Americans are available to get out there and buy, buy, buy.

If you're working retail, Black Friday is the day you hope to hit profitability for the year.  It's the day when the shoppers come out in droves, and so, well, it's a work day for many, many Americans.

Given how important this day is to our economy, the job creators have over the years gradually tweaked it and expanded it a bit.  A few years ago, we were introduced to the idea of Cyber Monday.

Cyber Monday is that day three days after Black Friday when agoraphobes and those of us who get the heebie jeebies at the very thought of being trapped in traffic in the mall parking lot can all do our shopping online.

This year, we've seen two new spins from the minds of those who are most concerned about making jobs.  There's "Small Business Saturday," when we're supposed to go shopping at small local businesses with whatever money we have left after hitting the Big Boxes on Black Friday.

And then, of course, there's tomorrow.  It's Black Thursday!  Yes, Black Thursday.

Tomorrow is the day right before Black Friday, when most Americans are given a pre-Black Friday vacation day to prepare themselves for shopping.  It's been neglected as a day when consumers could be doing their consuming, and that needs to change.

Yes, I know, this was the day we were supposed to be making lists and reviewing the catalogs that make up 95% of our mail.  But honestly, American shoppers have been wasting this time allocated for Black Friday preparation.

Instead, they've been just sitting around pointlessly at home arguing with their families, eating too much to compensate, and then zoning out unproductively in front of their completely inadequate 42 inch television.   They're often so wacked out on triptophan that they're not even awake to see the ads so carefully placed in the game.   Because of this, we're totally wasting their potential as the engines of our economic recovery.  This year, many of our retail giants have noticed this glaring omission, and are doing what they can to correct it.

Best Buy, Target, and Macys are all bumping their Black Friday start times right up against the border of Black Thursday.   They'll be opening their doors at midnight on Black Thursday, for the shopping convenience of every American.

Walmart, which always has the interests of consumers at heart, will be opening up at 10:00 PM on Black Thursday.   The official announcement from Walmart is:
By sharing our Black Friday specials earlier than ever, we hope to make buying decisions easier for parents working hard to give their families the Christmas they deserve.
Not to be outdone, ToysRUs will be opening at 9:00 PM on Black Thursday.

Of course, some people have whined about this.  You always have some whiners, who are just lazy and unaware of how generous and beneficent our job creators are.  They even got a petition going, which, fortunately, does not have to be paid any attention.   It'll be drowned in the endless sea of catalogs and Kardashian coverage.

So remember, my fellow consumers:  This year, forget about that wasteful, pointless time with your families.  Set aside that unAmerican failure to bump out against the backstops of the credit you've been extended.   Be in touch with the knowledge that your children and your spouse and your friends will not love you unless their market-driven expectations are met.  Get out of your house, put your nose to the shopping grindstone, and do what you've been told to do.

For that, the job creators will be truly thankful.