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No Pausing, No Thanking

No Pausing, No Thanking

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It seems like we've gone from a day of thanks to a day of gimme. The black Friday sales aren't waiting until Friday anymore. Now you have malls starting 'midnight madness' and on-line deals being offered before your turkey is even half-digested. K-mart is now open on Thanksgiving. We're going from elbows out and pass me the gravy (okay, I grew up in a big, hungry family) to elbows out and gimme the last pair of Isotoner gloves for $1.99! I mean, really! One Black Friday when I dared brave the pre-dawn crowds I ended up jammed in an aisle with a bunch of schmucks wanting to ask the lady next to me: "Now c'mon! How many 'Strawberry Shortcake' play sets do you really need to buy?! I know they're only $4.99, but you don't have that many kids!"

Proper gratitude means pausing to reflect on what you have been blessed with. It can and should involve thankfulness for much more than material things: your family and dear friends, your health, your mind and body to name a few. If you're not pausing and pondering because you're too wrapped up in what crap are we going to fight over with Large Marge in the sweats tomorrow we've missed the point. If we're so distracted by what strategy to employ so we can get the door buster at every store and dress warm enough to avoid frostbite in the 2 am chill then we've already forgotten the gratitude. If we're packing snacks so we can keep up our energy in a line that's stretching past layaway while your partner aunt Muriel goes after the fleece throw on early bird sale for $3.75 then we've gone too far. If you find yourself fighting off the scavengers who are waiting for you to look away from your cart (Hey, is that Donny Osmond?) so they can steal your merchandise before you can BUY it I'm saying it's not worth it. (Hey thanks. I really wanted that candle-warmer! Merry Christmas!)

Clearly I have participated in the Black Friday mayhem in the past. I don't do it anymore because I have ended up feeling like someone should PAY me for standing in a line that long. I've also felt like it's not reflective of the holiday spirit, whether you're talking about Thanksgiving or rushing right into Christmas.


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Sheryl Worsley


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