First, Happy Thanksgiving. What a great holiday! You get to gather together with people for the sole purpose of eating. It would not be Thanksgiving without Arlo singing the famous anti-hoarding song. It is about hoarding, right?
I’m getting a bit crotchety in my old age. I can almost certainly attribute it to having a kid and knowing it is our job to raise her to be a good person. I could rant hard about how angry it makes me to see people “defend” Christmas, as though a holiday that now starts the day after Halloween needs defending, but I won’t because I’m not in charge of enforcing the rules and if you want to be that way, well, you aren’t in charge of raising my kid to be a good person, for which I am grateful. See, I got it back to Thanksgiving.
The outlet malls in Connecticut, for as long as I can remember, have opened at midnight on Thanksgiving. I don’t think that really bothered me too much because I would not be going out at midnight to shop and presumably the staff at those places were being well compensated for that kind of craziness. This year, many other retailers are dipping their toes into early shopping madness. They are testing the waters to see if they can lure folks out of their homes to spend $$ without drawing enough public ire of their employees who will have to celebrate an augmented Thanksgiving holiday, if at all. I bet there are lots of conversations at these places about how many people would love to have their jobs if they don’t want to come in and work on Thanksgiving, too.
I don’t get it. I know I’m not alone in that feeling. I am starting to wonder if we are all existing in this panic mode all the time, where we have to do this and do that, be here and there and QUICK!, buy this thing before it is all gone or your kid will hate you forever, instead of just sitting and eating a lot of food with people.
I need socks this year. My kid needs nothing. Children are natural stuff magnets. Justin could probably use some new socks too since I steal his when I can’t find mine. I can get socks on my time frame.
This year for Black Friday we are going to do a home purge. You can join me, too. Instead of going out and buying stuff/things, you’ll join me by going through part of your house (a closet, a drawer, that random bag that has sat in the closet for over a year and you have no clue what is even in there and are really hoping there wasn’t any fruit, but there always seems to be at least one piece of fruit in the random bags, isn’t there?) and putting still useful stuff aside to donate and throwing out stuff you don’t need. If you are feeling really ambitious, you could do a whole room. All that matters is that we stop the cycle of thoughtless accumulation. We stop filing our homes to the breaking point with crap. No more! Take your 1/2 ton of garbage (if you’ve listened to Alice’s Restaurant, that will make sense) and dump it.
I know what you are thinking, “Boo hoo, that’s when I do all of my Christmas shopping, Kate.” Well, wait. What if, for one year, instead of the transfer of stuff from your house to someone elses’, you gifted experiences. A bottle of wine. A meal at a restaurant. Babysitting services. House cleaning. Dog walking. (Wow, pretty obvious about what’s on my mind today.) No dish towels. No musical snow globes with a winter scene. No decorative anything. Seriously. Don’t gift someone decorative items ever. No plastic stuff for the kiddies that makes crazy noises that scare the pets. You are giving the gift of a time out. A moment to stop and breathe. If everyone did that, next year, our Anti-Black Friday purge would be a little bit easier and the year after that, we might very well be on our way to not being choked out by stuff.
So again, Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours and Happy Holidays too because I’m polite like that.