November 26, 2013

Go Shopping on Thanksgiving or Don’t, I Really Don’t Care

If I see one more facebook post lamenting the business practices of some companies to be open on Thanksgiving, my head is going to explode.


Sorry, just looked at facebook. My head exploded.

Seriously, I’m sick of it. I’m sick of seeing the statuses and blog posts and tweets whining about the fact that people “have” to work on Thanksgiving.

The biggest irritant about the whole thing is the self-serving nature of posts chastising businesses for operating on Thanksgiving. “I wasn’t planning on going to K-Mart on Thanksgiving anyway, but now I really won’t, because I don’t want to be part of the problem.”

Wow! Good for you! I bet you feel so good about yourself for making that commitment to do nothing! We all wish we had the moral fiber you do! You’re so inspiring!

Meanwhile, I hate to be the one to break this to the internet, but people have had to work on Thanksgiving for years. Literally. Literally-literally. My whole life, Thanksgivings involved at least one person being absent due to their work schedule. You know what I was taught? “At least they have a job.”

No whining. No crying. No “evil corporation” nonsense. Just gratitude that they have the means and ability to provide themselves an income. (On Thanksgiving, even.)

And that’s the other thing. People have been working on Thanksgiving for years. Even last year! Where were the blog posts titled:
If you fill up your car with gas on Thanksgiving, you’re part of the problem.
If you go to the movies with your family on Thanksgiving, you’re part of the problem.
If your appendix bursts on Thanksgiving, you’re part of the problem.
If you watch football on Thanksgiving, you’re part of the problem.

(Because, you know, it’s not just the millionaire NFL players who work on Thanksgiving. It’s also the concessions girl and the network camera operator and the stadium janitor. You’re “contributing” to their indentured servitude if you watch football on Thanksgiving. I hope you feel sufficiently guilty.)

Nope, they were nowhere. Facebook was silent. Maybe, before one more tweet is RT’d condemning Thanksgiving shoppers, everyone should take a good hard look in the mirror, if they ever watched live television on Thanksgiving or had to run to buy *one more bag of ice.*

By the way, can I remind you that we are living in a time of record unemployment? That there are people out there who don’t know how they’re going to feed their kids next week or pay their next gas bill to keep the heat on, let alone buy their kids Christmas? And I’m supposed to be upset that there are people who are able to make those things happen for their families, because it means they “have” to work one holiday out of the year?

And, because I just have to, there are soldiers deployed around the world who will spend their Thanksgiving maneuvering around IEDs trying to avoid being shot. Pardon me if I don’t have a spare tear to shed for the Walmart cashier who has to settle for Thanksgiving leftovers.


Personally, I’ve never seen the appeal of holiday shopping. I avoid Black Friday like the plague. I can’t imagine something being a big enough bargain that I would fight crowds on the actual holiday itself.

But then, I’m also not a single mom with 4 kids trying to get that high-demand toy on a fixed income who needs to find the best deal she can. I’m not going to judge her for leaving the kids with Grandma to run to the store on Thanksgiving afternoon to make it happen.

Because, yeah, Thanksgiving is a time for family, but sometimes taking care of your family means working when you don’t want to. Or has GenX really not learned that?

Whatever. The whole brouhaha seems hypocritical and self-pleasing and mostly a way for people to find yet another reason to feel holier-than-thou. Can’t the internet go back to judging people who eat bread on Thanksgiving instead?


  1. Thank you! I was just telling my husband that I should write a post like this:) I totally agree. Also, some of those retail workers are getting time and a half. And at every retail job I've ever worked, I was asked if I knew I would have to work during the holidays. It goes with the territory.

    I don't love that some stores are open all day on Thanksgiving but it's their right. Maybe the people who don't have family to spend it with will have something to do now.

  2. I wish I could like this post a million times. I am tired of people being so judgmental of others. There are those that have no one to spend Thanksgiving with or surprise there are those that don't celebrate Thanksgiving.

    I don't understand why we all must agree on everything. Having different opinions and views are what make the world go around.

    Thank you for this post!

  3. Finally! Someone had to say it. So sick of the whiners.

  4. I totally just wrote a post like this for tomorrow, but decided to post something else instead.

  5. Yes! Seriously people! As someone with a deployed husband, I am even more annoyed by it this year. And why is it ok to sit and watch hours of football with your family but not okay to go out shopping together?

  6. My dad has worked on Thanksgiving as often as possible since I was tiny. At his company, you get a little extra pay if you work on a Holiday. They need to keep everything going, can't shut down a whole mining operation just so we can have a holiday, so if you are willing to stay and work you get a little something extra.

    The same goes for Utility companies. Electric, gas, cable, phone, all of those need people working. They may be able to get by on a smaller crew for a day, but just using your utilities is causing people to work on Thanksgiving. They (the internet) never think about those people.

    And then J worked at a gas station back in college. He worked Thanksgiving. His family was nearby so we could work the timing with the schedule and not travel. He worked so others could travel to family.

    I will not be going shopping, but I'll be glad for an open store if I run out of something or realize we forgot something. I won't shop black friday because I hate the crowds, but have in the past (my MIL loves it).

    Hell, I should write my own post. I'll stop here for now. :)

  7. Come to think of it, I've worked on Thanksgiving, Christmas AND New Year. It's just how it goes. Hurrah.

  8. People are so irritating. Yes, opening the stores at 6 pm to shop sounds stupid. No, you don't have to shop. But really, how many years have you sent someone out to the store for the butter, or milk, or beer, or whatever that you forgot? Someone was working there! If I were in the situation where I needed the job, I'd be happy for the extra hours.

  9. Amen...

    My service days ended in 82... but you never forget what being away from loved ones by thousands of miles is like. I was luckier, the cold war wasn't a Sunday stroll, and even in peace time, we loose people too young.

    God keep you, your family, your husband safe.. only the best wishes for you all...

    and thanks..

    I wish I could go in place of these young people.. I married late, our oldest is 14, youngest 12. Daughter and son.. and my son speaks of enlisting and I learn the fear that my mother had as she waved goodbye.. so proud of him, and so afraid, like I never was when I had my turn. I was young, immortal.. and yet to be tested.

    Not every test leaves you without scars.. some you can see, some less visible..

    Thanks.. from my family to yours, our prayers are with you and your husband.

  10. I already commented on Facebook, but thank you for saying this. It is so ridiculous to hear over and over again how we're "part of the problem" for encouraging people working on Thanksgiving.

    Then, yesterday, I read a post from an acquaintance who stated "Walmart is so evil! Someone got trampled on Black Friday and I can't believe they can exist as a company." The level of ignorance in that comment just makes my blood boil. :)

  11. LOL, I love this post. I was also getting annoyed at the Facebook posts saying so many people were "part of the problem." Well said!

  12. Haha, love this post. Quite possibly, the best response I've seen to the hoopla. Wish I would have seen it sooner! Seriously, I haven't looked at blogs in months!


I was nice and didn't turn on word verifications. Please reciprocate by having your reply-to email set and not posting anonymously.