Friday, November 28, 2008

The Giving Season

Well it's that time of year. A lot of crazy people have already stampeded the Walmart's of the world this morning looking for deals at 4 am.

I've never understood this whole Black Friday nonsense. I've never once in my entire life gotten up at 4 am because I wanted something that badly. My mother does this. She thinks it's a sport. It's no different to her than when my dad gets up a 5 am to get in the boat early to catch fish. It's a sport.

Shopping is not a sport to me. I appreciate lovely things - I think about them and sometimes admire them (and as evidenced below, occasionaly write about them...the Viktor and Rolf Perfume is still on my mind), occasionally purchasing some of them. But I don't need to hunt them like it's a sporting event. Frankly I'd rather sit in a blind and wait for the ducks.

No amount of shopping this season is going to save the retailers apparently. Many of them are going to be going out of business whether we shop like crazy or not. For more on that there's some long articles in the Wall Street journal about how it's very much gloom and doom for retailers this year - even Chanel is discounting things by 50%! So if you were in the market for a $5,000 Chanel suit, you can snap one up for about $2,500.

But when I start thinking about what I should buy people for Christmas this year - especially with all the bargains out there because of the economy, I start to feel very unsure about how to spend my money. It seems that there is this frenzied psychosis about spending and not spending and the economy and bargains are good - or are they bad? Spend your money, don't spend your money. Don't spend your money on imported crap! Shop at Wal-Mart (all imported crap)! It's a bit schizophrenic.

This year I was thinking it might be nice to give some people on your list something more meaningful. There is a group called Heifer International. Go check out their website. It's a great opportunity to give a poor family their own cow, goat, rabbit, chickens, or a plethora of other things that can help them actually sustain their families. I love the idea of giving these as gifts to some of our hard to buy for friends and families.


Cynthia said...

So have you started shopping yet? I avoided the Black Friday too. I just can't do it. The only good thing about the economy is that I've hit quite a few going out of business sales and found some amazing buys.

Bandanamom said...

I don't know whether to call myself lame, or just shrug my shoulders and submit to the idea that I actually somewhat enjoy the last minute rush of not starting any shopping until about mid-month. But the truth is I probably won't do anything until the beginning of next week - apparently that's just the way I roll. I don't like to commit to anything before I have a really good idea of what everyone is getting/wanting and usually, I just don't know what that is until I give myself some kind of crazy-close-to-Christmas deadline. I could NEVER in a million years be one of those people who starts in July or something 1. I'm too disorganized in my brain for that, 2. not only do I not know what anyone wants but they really don't either and would change their minds before December and 3. that would suck all the fun of running around for 3 days straight right before Christmas day right?


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