Dec 14th, 2015 | By | Category: Columns

Here we are, smack dab in the middle of the holiday season, and I was already sick of it back in August. To be fair, it’s not the holidays themselves that irk me, far from it; the holidays are a time I get paid to not be at work. Anything that enables me to collect a paycheck while sitting at home, wearing gravy-stained sweatpants while playing video games is a-okay in my book. The holidays are like communism. It’s a great idea on paper, then people get introduced to the system, and then everything goes to shit. The holiday phenomenon of assbaggery reaches astronomical levels when it comes time to spend, what we in the business call “chedda.”

Thanksgiving is the calm before the storm, and if you ignore the fact that it’s a holiday that when you boil it down, is celebrating the almost complete extinction of an entire people, it is actually pretty awesome. It’s the only day where gluttony isn’t only encouraged, it’s celebrated. You pile turkey, stuffing, various potato based dishes and the ambrosia of every Thanksgiving meal (macaroni & cheese), on your plate, and you go to town. You go back for seconds, thirds, you begin to regret the decisions you’ve made in life as you go back for fourths and fifths. You imagine how your life would be if you were confined to a bed, if you could get your security deposit back as emergency services have to remove the side of your apartment and hoist you out of bed as you grab two slices of pie and a couple of heaping scoops of ice cream. You slip into a food laden euphoric trance as your blood sugar drops and drool starts flowing from the corner of your semi-comatose smile. That should be the end of it. You ate, you drank, you spent time with family you’re only obligated to see once a year, it’s time forgo pants the rest of the night and pass out, right? Wrong. Time to go shopping for the Super Bowl of holidays that comes up in a few weeks, and thus, “Black Friday (Thursday)” was born.

I make it a habit to avoid two things:  large crowds and assholes (the people kind), and Black Friday has both of them in spades. Now, I’d be lying if I said I had never taken part in the frenzy of the sales, but I did so the American way: at home, in front of the computer, wearing Homer Simpson slippers and a bathrobe, eating a pan of cinnamon rolls as I add items to my virtual cart. In the age we live in, there’s really no point in having to put up with the endless waves of people when most businesses have no qualms extending their sales to their online store fronts. I’ve gone out for this madness once, and by the time I got to the register, I understood why stabbing people was a thing. Thanksgiving is, as its name implies, a holiday dedicated to us giving thanks to our family, friends, and the overall awesomeness that we were lucky enough to experience the past year (not being dead is a pretty big win). So then why, less than 24 hours later, are we clamoring over one another for material goods?

You’d think that with how horrible everyone is on this day, that there’d be a sense of general revulsion expressed by, well, fucking everybody. But there isn’t. Various news outlets cover the madness, commenting on how frenzied the crowds are, how some stores forced their employees to come in to work mere hours after enjoying time with their families, and they do this with a smile on their face as they chuckle and chalk it up to simple “holiday madness.” You know who expects their workforce to show up regardless of the day? Emergency services and the military. Last I checked, Wal-Mart isn’t in the business of saving lives, and they only fight price wars with Target. The point being, nothing about how people are acting on this day should be looked upon favorably, and it’s clearly gotten out of hand. A day dedicated to selfishness and greed is taking place after a holiday where we just acknowledged how thankful we are for how our lives are. How is it okay to enjoy a slice of pumpkin pie with grandma, watch the Macy’s Day Parade with your nieces and nephews, bouncing the littlest one on your knee, and then, a few hours later, getting in a fist fight with someone over a hand mixer that’s marked down 10%? It’s a day where any sort of common decency is thrown out of the window.  People have made it their entire lives, avoiding doing anything that would get them killed, only to wind up getting trampled to death at a fucking Kohl’s. I don’t know about you, but I would not want that mentioned in my obituary.

If people are baring their fangs over low prices, I can’t even begin to imagine how quickly society will spiral out of control in the event of a major catastrophe: I legitimately think people would resort to cannibalism within the first 20 minutes.

Actual video of shoppers and store employees preparing for opening:


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