A Blessing and Curse: Black Friday


The sanest scene one will witness on Black Friday. Photo by: Wade Payne.

Every year, on the last Friday of November, the phenomenon of Black Friday erupts in stores across America. Advertisements for the day roll in the week of and citizens prepare for the greatest shopping day of the year. Warriors arise to obtain lowered prices and half-off sales that quench their temptations. At the same time, regular employees witness a vast change from mundane experiences of everyday shopping to a bustling sale haul. Black Friday is a day that stirs the tornado of sales and low prices, sweeping up the starving minds of shoppers, resulting in distraught stores and zombified minds of customers, but also satisfied souls that had the opportunity to retrieve what anyone would want, a really good sale. 


The history of Black Friday was rooted from a negative perspective during the 1950s. Police officers in Philadelphia had to execute damage control once families and shoppers returned from Thanksgiving the next day. A chaotic wave of shoppers swooped in to stock up for the holidays. Meanwhile, others arrived for the Army-Navy football game. All companies went “green” during Black Friday, reviving loads of profits the day after Thanksgiving. It was seen as a devious way to make income, thus the name Black Friday. Companies tried to combat the name with “Big Friday” but Black Friday was there to stay. 


The North Georgia Premium Outlets is a grand example of Black Friday chaos. The crowds are insane; floods of customers and residents of the area come in to snag the staggering low prices of the holiday; however, one cannot neglect the stress put onto stores and employees who try their best to heed to the overflow and mountains of purchases that line up at their registers. It is a scene to be remembered as lines of people wrap around the inside and outside of stores. And after the frenzy? The aftermath shows in distraught isles, overturned shelves and misplaced items. In the eyes of a customer, Black Friday is a great treasure to be obtained. In the eyes of the employees, Black Friday is the Colossus of all shopping days.  


Will this year’s Black Friday be different? Many of North High’s students either plan to participate in Black Friday and Cyber Monday or work. One student, junior Emma Keith remarks, “I’m more of a Cyber Monday kind of person, just because it’s easier,” and she jokingly adds, “I think Black Friday is a better holiday than Thanksgiving.” Another student, junior Abby Freeman, regards the fact that Black Friday might be a great shopping day but since she will be working during Black Friday, says the rush can be “very overwhelming” and the workers are “always moving.” 


Black Friday and Cyber Monday are indeed excellent and effective ways for companies to rack in as much profit as possible in one day or during the holiday week; in addition, as families return from their Thanksgiving travels, the sales await them to prepare for December. On the other hand, employees will have to handle the stress and hassle of this demanding shopping day. Black Friday is the anarchic gift that just keeps on giving one way or another.