The Black Friday Blues

Bloomberg Business Week reports that retailers are kinda freaking that Thanksgiving is so late this year (the latest in over a decade). All told, this year’s “shopping season” will be six days shorter than last years. Estimates are that retailers will lose $1.5 Billion in online sales alone.

In response, some retailers are starting Black Friday one day earlier, on Thanksgiving (which part of Friday don’t they understand?) Others, such as Macy’s, are opening on Thanksgiving for the very first time. Surprisingly, Thanksgiving has become the fastest growing online shopping day.

There are some who say that retailers would be just fine if we trashed the whole Black Friday thing. Several countries that don’t have Thanksgiving spend more than Americans do during the holiday season. Others argue that Black Friday has already become ingrained as a sort of American Sport.

I’ve got a friend who laments the fact that Americans can’t have a holiday without attaching it to shopping. Nothing is sacred, he says as he discusses where he sees Martin Luther King Day going: Free at last, Free at last, Buy one get one free at last. Thankfully, we’ve still got Groundhog’s Day.

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