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Friday, November 23, 2012

Black Friday

Mueller Tunnel, near Mt. Wilson

Black Friday! Shopping! Deals galore! Everybody's heading to the stores!

Not everybody.

When I was a kid our family used to drive to Chicago on the day after Thanksgiving to see the displays in the windows at Marshall Field's, and to have a chat with Santa. The last time we did that was the last time I went shopping on the day after Thanksgiving.

Is today a shopping day for you? Share your experiences!


25 comments:

dive said...

What a gorgeous photo, Petrea!
No shopping over on this side of the Pond today; just rain and wind and no money to spend. Black Friday is definitely a US thing.

Bellis said...

Traffic was lined up to get into some of the malls here at midnight. It's crazy! I'd prefer to be in a tunnel with light at the end.

llandudnopictures said...

Love the keyhole effect! As for 'Black Friday',(by the way, who does actually create and dictate these names and events?!)I won't be shopping but expect to be busy being shopped from!

Petrea Burchard said...

Interesting that the first three commenters today are from Britain, albeit one is transplanted to the states. Bellis knows what an Anglophile I am.

Maybe the Americans are out shopping. I don't mind a bargain but as Bellis indicates, the crowds are awful on this day and for me, the craziness outweighs the savings.

If you get to North Wales, here's the description of Geoff's shop in Llandudno: "We're North Shore, a small business selling beautiful landscape pictures of North Wales and Northern England."
I hope to stop in some day.

I don't know who names these things, Geoff. It's supposed to mean shoppers are putting the stores "in the black," but to me it just sounds ominous.

Adele said...

I'm planning to hit the computer later today, but I do enjoy the excitement of being out in the middle of it all. I just prefer to do it when I am not emotionally invested. First, shop online, then shop around the mall for good people-watching. I do try to buy much of my loot in our local stores. The lines aren't bad and the service is wonderful.

Love your memories of Marshall Field's. I've been once, but it was already a Macy's by then. Ate at The Walnut Room. You could feel the history!

Pasadena Adjacent said...

yes, because Mr V's Birthday is a week away.

So, is the trail clear enough to cross after that tunnel opening? I won't cross over that fallen shale. What lies on the other side is one hell of a drop

Bellis said...

Trail's cleared again and the tunnel repaired. I so want to be up there right now! The photo is drawing me into my car and up the mountains, away from the vacuum cleaner reduced by $100 that I want from JC Penney's Black Friday Sale.

Petrea Burchard said...

Good for you, Adele. I loved the Walnut Room! You could pretend you were in a drawing of Paris.

Happy birthday to Mr. V!

Bellis was with me when I took this photo (I'd never have known about the trail otherwise).

Desiree said...

That sounds like a lovely tradition. The last time I went Post Thanksgiving shopping was ages ago, at a favorite wing of South Coast Plaza. This guy I was dating at the time and I met up with a group of people for drinks. It wasn't crazy, just positive energy and excitement. I still remember the pair of pants Barry picked up at Banana Republic. Definitely pre marriage, we actually had spending money.

Diana said...

I wouldn't go near a store on Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Now Small Business Saturday, that might be a different thing... On the other hand, with a house stuffed with more junk than I have any idea what to do with and 60+ years under my belt, I only exchange gifts with two other people (and one of them gets a year's supply of homemade jam because that's all he wants), so hardly worth risking life and limb to get into a store - I just buy things I think the other one would like as I run across them during the year. Much less stressful...

Besides, isn't it a little ironic that we have a holiday dedicated to being grateful for what we have, only to follow it with a shopping orgy? Bah, humbug...

LOLfromPasa said...

Nice to read a little about what you are 'not' doing today. Yes, no Black Friday here in UK but some do go a bit mad in the New Year's sales. That usually features on the news. Hope you had a nice day yesterday :).

Petrea Burchard said...

That sounds nice, Des. I've heard other votes for South Coast Plaza. I'm not going, I'm just saying.

Oh god, Diana, what is Cyber Monday? Am I supposed to shop all weekend? Am I a bad American if I don't? Fine. I prefer your shopping plan.

LOL, this will be on the news tonight. The radio traffic helicopters don't cover actual traffic today (there is none), they hover above the malls and talk about how crowded the parking lots are.

Laura Monteros said...

llandudnopictures, Black Friday is so-named because that's the day that puts retailers in the black for the year.

Petrea, Cyber Monday is the big online shopping day that follows Black Friday--for all those things you can't find in the store. If Diana goes out shopping on Cyber Monday, the stores should be relatively uncrowded (given the season), but the websites may crash.

As for me--I detest shopping in stores for Christmas. Too many people, messy stores, difficult parking, hours spent looking for merchandise. I do almost all my shopping online before Nov. 1. I'm behind this year because of that LA Times magazine I've been working on, so I do plan on going to Webster's tomorrow for Small Biz Saturday.

I used to take the kids to Santa's Village, and made the mistake of going one year on the day after T'giving. I learned that summer or the week after Christmas (to say thank you to Santa) was better. Alas! No more Santa's Village, only memories.

Trish said...

Black Friday originally was termed by store owners as the day they went into the black ink for the season. Later, it came into that saying by the workers who felt it was a day from hell. Cyber Monday started some years back when many people had no more than dial up at home, but T-1+ connections at work, so they would go to work Monday and shop online with the good connection. Not as applicable today, but many stores still offer Cyber Monday deals.

As for us, other than visiting the doctor and hitting the market for something we ran out of yesterday, we haven't spent a penny. We DID however, get to use our first Salvation Army "voucher" (http://www.soulforce.org/pdf/kettlevoucher.pdf), reminding them that we don't donate to organizations who discriminate or state that gay people should all die (no, I'm not kidding, the CEO did say this).

Am happy, not fighting people or parking and we just enjoyed a turkey, cranberry and cheese grilled sandwich...yuuum!

Katie said...

Looks like an interesting and scenic place to spend Black Friday. I decided to skip the shopping today, but I did buy a cookie at the local coffee shop to have with my afternoon tea.

Just for perspective, I was reading a piece written by a guy from the Berkeley Historical Society sharing news from Thanksgiving 1937 from the Berkeley Daily Gazette: "Hink's department store held its "last dollar day before Xmas" sale the day after Turkey Day. A full-page ad offered "200 smart dresses" discounted to $7 or $12 each, "500 winter coats" for between $16 and $49, and 87-cent card table covers, among other items."

The mad rush for bargains at 4 am the day after Thanksgiving might be a somewhat recent phenomenon, but looking for deals on that day sure isn't new!

Petrea Burchard said...

I can still get myself a $12 dress if I shop second-hand. We have some fabulous resale shops in town.

Yep. You all have convinced me, or maybe I've convinced myself: it's local small businesses I'm buying from this year. I had coffee this morning at Little Flower Candy Co.--a good place to start.

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

I do not venture to the stores on Black Friday, but tomorrow will be visiting a few independent shops on Small Business Saturday. It has been given much publicity in my area, and there are many supportive events for the small business owners.


Bises,
Genie

MANU PRAKASH TYAGI said...

nice

Dina said...

Oh, you remind me of bygone days, growing up in Chicago. My grandmother would take me on the L to see the magical Marshall Field's windows at this time of year. Back then she claimed that we females must always wear a skirt or dress when going downtown, never pants.
That's crazy. Was that true? Well, that was before your time, Petrea.
Thanks for the memories.

Petrea Burchard said...

Good for you, Genie. We have some delightful small businesses in Pasadena (it's quite the shopping mecca), so it's a good place to celebrate Small Business Saturday.

Dina, I believe your grandmother felt that way but oh! Those freezing Chicago winters! We may have worn skirts (I don't remember), but we would have worn thick tights with them.

Petrea Burchard said...

Manu Prakash Tyagi,
I found your comment in my spam box, but I don't think your comment is spam. Thank you!

Ms M said...

I didn't do Black Friday -- I'm not much of a "shopper" kind of person. It is interesting to read everyone's perspective in the comments!

Ms M said...

Oh - and I really liked your photo, too. The striking contrast -- goes well with the title of you post.

LONDONLULU said...

I confess I'm not a huge shopper (though I love indulging sometimes) and spent Friday eating lots of leftovers:) We had a Small Business Saturday, luckily still a lot of small/family-owned businesses in town!

TheChieftess said...

2 hours away from the nearest shopping mall...and me under the weather...and family up from down south...
Nah...no Black Friday shopping for me!!! Actually...I haven't shopped Black Friday for years...and never plan to again!!!

Now Cyber Monday might get me involved...