Friday, November 16, 2012

What is Black Friday?

Is it a HOLIDAY?

Those are the 2 questions that my daughter asked me while we were having breakfast. Why? Because all she sees in my emails as well as the on the sites I browse online are all about 'black Friday'. I had to explain to her that it's not considered a holiday although I'm sure some people take the day off to take advantage of the offers in stores.

I've been living in this country for more than 12 years but I've never gone shopping on a Black Friday. I know there are some deep discounts on that day but I'm not willing to wake up at the crack of dawn much less line up in front of stores before midnight to wait for the stores to open at the crack of dawn just to shop. Just reading how crazy people get on this day makes me shiver actually. Stampedes, pushing, shoving just to get in a store is not my cup of tea. Some people probaby get the adrenaline rush doing that but not me. I'm hoping our little one won't do that either because to me, it's hardly worth it.

Since I am blogging about Black Friday, I thought of going the extra yard and check Wikipedia for a little background about this much awaited day. Here's what Wiki says about it...

Black Friday is the name given to the day following Thanksgiving Day in the United States, traditionally the beginning of the Christmas shopping season. On this day, most major retailers open extremely early, often at 4 am, or earlier, and offer promotional sales to kick off the holiday shopping season, similar to Boxing Day sales in many Commonwealth Nations. Black Friday is not an official holiday, but many non-retail employers also observe this day as a holiday along with Thanksgiving, giving their employees the day off and increasing the number of potential shoppers. It has routinely been the busiest shopping day of the year since 2005,[1] although news reports, which at that time were inaccurate,[2] have described it as the busiest shopping day of the year for a much longer period of time.[3] The day's name originated in Philadelphia, where it originally was used to describe the heavy and disruptive pedestrian and vehicle traffic which would occur on the day after Thanksgiving.[4][5] Use of the term started before 1961 and began to see broader use outside Philadelphia around 1975. Later an alternative explanation began to be offered: that "Black Friday" indicates the point at which retailers begin to turn a profit, or are "in the black".[4][6] For many years, it was common for retailers to open at 6:00 am, but in the late 2000s many had crept to 5:00 or even 4:00. This was taken to a new extreme in 2011, when several retailers (including Target, Kohls, Macy's, Best Buy, and Bealls[7]) opened at midnight for the first time.[citation needed] In 2012, Walmart led several other retailers in announcing it would open its stores at 8:00 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day [8], prompting calls for a walkout among some workers. [9]

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Happy Birthday!

To me! Ha!

Actually it was last week. I just can't think of any title so I just greeted myself a happy birthday. Is that even legal? Hahaha...

Yep, I turned another corner. Another year passed...hoping to get to the next one. Isn't that what we all want? To go another year and then some.

My birthday used to be a big deal. That was before I moved... It was a big deal when I was back in the Philippines.  It's a big deal not because it's my birthday though but because it's All Saint's Day there. For those who are not familiar what All Saint's Day is, it is the day when we remember our dearly departed ones. Well, not just remember since we can do that anytime of the year anyway. We can say, it's 'THEIR' day because it's all about them. How? First, their 'tombs are cleaned and relatives and friends drop by their resting place to light a candle and offer a prayer or two as well as some flowers to them. Loved ones stay by 'them' for hours usually catching up and playing games. Some even camp out there and eat there. Yep, it's like a picnic in the cemetery I must say. Our local cemetery back home is usually bursting with people on this day from morning until midnight. That's how big of a deal my birthday...err...All Saint's day is back home. If only for that reason, my birthday back then was always a happy one. I may not know 99.9% of the people in the cemetery but it was fun watching hundreds of people walk past you on your birthday.

Now that I'm 12,000 miles away from all that, my birthday is no longer the same. I don't think it will ever be the same anyway. Does it mean it's not a happy birthday anymore? Not really. It's still a happy birthday for me. I don't celebrate it with as many people anymore but I have the most important people with me. That to me is enough reason to have a very happy birthday.