I love a good deal! A family of five living on a single income (ok, truth be told, I do work about 5 hours per week right now), I've learned to budget, stretch a dollar, save a dime, whatever you call it--that's where I aim. When Black Friday rolls around, I don't often miss the chance to shop. If I can't make it out, Adam saves the day by picking up the "must-haves" on my shopping list.
I'm fully aware that Black Friday has become Shop on Thanksgiving Thursday. And I'm aware that people are rather disgruntled about the idea of retail employees missing time with their families so we can get a TV at an AMAZING price. So a boycott is called. "Don't shop on Thanksgiving!" "Let people enjoy time with their families!" Ok, I hear you.
I'm still shopping on Thanksgiving. Where is the outcry when nurses have to work on Thanksgiving or Christmas? Where is the boycott when the letter carrier has to miss his son's baseball game because he's delivering your mail on Saturday? The police officer missing a dance recital, the soldier missing ....well everything, where is the demand for family time then?
We don't say anything about that because that's the job, right? That's what they have chosen to do--just like retail employees. When you work in a retail establishment, especially as a seasonal employee, you have got to figure you're going to draw the short straw at some point and have to work a holiday.
It's never fun to miss out on time when your family is gathered together. I know this because each Thanksgiving, my family members in Ohio are gathered around tables where we won't be seated. We aren't there to laugh over mashed potatoes, eat Granny's homemade mac-n-cheese, or watch all kids enjoy time with their cousins. We miss out on all of that incredible food, the arguing with your bossy aunt over who's doing dishes, and then standing at the sink with your brother, soap up to our elbows, cleaning cranberry salad (because who on earth eats that stuff?!) off of Grandma's holiday plates. If you have to miss that, I'm sorry; I know that feeling.
We won't make it home for Thanksgiving. My husband's job as a soldier has us too far away from family to make the drive for turkey. We have to save our time to see family over Christmas. It makes me sad, especially since Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, but that's the job, isn't it? I mean, he chose the Army, again and again (and again). Essentially, his job is keeping us from that big family table for yet another year. And that's just how it goes.
As I shop, I'll be courteous and kind to my cashier and other store employees that evening. I won't push or shove for a $4 mini-crockpot or shank someone for an iPad. I'll smile and thank them for their time, though the paycheck should really do the trick. After all, these holiday-working employees do get paid to work each time they clock in, including Thanksgiving. If you want to boycott Wal-Mart, go ahead. That's one less person in line in front of me.