Share your stories on joys of Black Friday
If the love language you speak most fluently is giving gifts, your time is about to arrive. The Season of Love is almost upon us and its semiofficial launch date -- Black Friday, as it is known -- is just weeks away.
Black Friday takes its name, of course, from the notion that, for many businesses, this is the day of the year that determines their profits, that puts them "in the black." But, for generations of shoppers, the day after Thanksgiving has had a much less commercial objective. Oh, a big part of the idea is buying things, of course, and getting bargains in the process, but what underlies it all is the reason for the buying -- the desire to give gifts that will be valued by people whom we appreciate and love.
For countless thousands, the holiday season is, in conjunction with its many religious connotations, the best time of year for celebrating love and friendship, and Black Friday, coming immediately on the heels of the day we express gratitude for our many blessings in life, is the day that gets the joyous celebration in motion.
The advent of online options has brought changes in people's shopping habits in recent years, but there is still something special about the atmosphere of the crowds, the lights, the restaurants, the stores and, yes, the bargains on the day after Thanksgiving. It is likely a little different for every individual. We'd like to hear what it is for you.
We're inviting you to share your story about what makes Black Friday meaningful. Is there a particular Black Friday that stands out in your memory? What motivates you to rush into the breach and stand in long lines to get that one special gift? How does this day of shopping set the tone for your holiday celebrations? There may be many other thoughts, images and memories that come to your mind when you think of Black Friday. We'd like to hear them, and find ways to share some of them with readers across the suburbs.
To join in, send us a story or essay of no more than 500 words describing your thoughts and feelings about Black Friday. We'll choose at least one essay to publish in full on our Thanksgiving Day edition. We'll publish excerpts from others, and we'll make others available in full at our website. Send your piece to us by email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the words "Black Friday" in the Subject field. Be sure to include your full name, hometown and a phone number where we can reach you. The deadline for items to reach us is Monday, Nov. 18.
On the surface, Black Friday -- or even the entire range of the holiday shopping season for that matter -- can appear to be all about material goods. That's understandable. The sudden abundance of appeals and messages and come-ons can sometimes make it seem that the season is all about flashing lights, cacophonous music and how much we can buy.
We think there's something much more to it than that. We can't wait to see it expressed in the words of your own language of love.
Jim Slusher, email@example.com, is deputy managing editor for opinion at the Daily Herald. Follow him on Facebook at www.facebook.com/jim.slusher1 and on Twitter at @JimSlusher.