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(Slate)   Shopping on Black Friday is for suckers, and if you insist on going shopping, here's a handy guide to what you shouldn't buy   (slate.com) divider line 29
    More: PSA, American Holidays  
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11913 clicks; posted to Main » on 23 Nov 2012 at 4:13 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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Archived thread
2012-11-23 05:32:17 AM
4 votes:
If you are shopping today, you are what's wrong with this country.

/why yes I AM on my break at 4:30 am
2012-11-23 07:14:31 AM
3 votes:
For those of us returning back to work on Friday to make sure the damn world doesn't end for companies that, you know, are actually productive on days like this... Let me say:

fark
Black
Friday

To the old people clogging the streets and adding 15 extra minutes to my drive time
To the Middle-Class soccer mom driving the gargantuan SUV and making a U-Turn in the middle of the street, no even an intersection, the middle of the street in front of me
To the out of staters visiting family, and then going out for a good deal and not knowing where the F- you are trying to go and swapping lanes at 14 miles an hour
To the HORDES of F-ing rednecks with their gargantuan 4x4 trucks with no mufflers blasting their exhuast louder the moment it's their turn to pull into the Bass Pro shop

fark each and every single one you... I hope your cheap ass chinese products give you a horrible inoperable cancer that drags your death out for 2 or 3 years where you end up a withered husk, stinking of urine and bed sores, without dignity, and your family is praying for you to just die and get it over with, then just as you release your last breath, and you hear your own death rattle, the last sound you hear is your own bowels releasing and the last thing you see are your loved ones covering their noses from the smell...
2012-11-23 04:47:51 AM
3 votes:
The opening on *thursday* crap has shown that Black Friday has jumped the shark. Retail corps have now sunk to new sociopathic lows defying the entire purpose of Thanksgiving, requiring their employees to forgo it to show up at a mandatory all-hands-on-deck event.
2012-11-23 04:43:47 AM
3 votes:
Even shorter guide: buy nothing. By all means, go out and about early and often and waste all the salespeople's time you can, but buy nothing. Take whatever free samples you can but buy nothing. Make it so expensive a proposition for them to ram a distant shame-driven waste fest down our throats that they are forced to cease the year 'round bombardment of christmas advertising. Force some reason upon society. Buy nothing.
2012-11-23 04:22:13 AM
3 votes:

Omahawg: Pocket Ninja: I was actually thinking about buying a Kindle Paperwhite until I logged on and saw that it wouldn't ship until December 21st. December 21st? What the fark is that? Jesus, I thought online shopping was supposed to be efficient. Christ, give me a chance to stand in line for 10 hours and knife some schmuck in the back to get it by the weekend. Way to fail, Amazon.

man, those e-books don't pay nothing for royalties. seriously. it ain't even worth anyone's time. it doesn't even average out a penny a word anymore.

that's what the downfall of civilization will be. when it don't even pay to tell folks about anything anymore.

fark those e-books. fark them all day and all night long.


you are clearly an accomplished author, what with being a master of the English language and all.
2012-11-23 11:18:20 AM
2 votes:
I've been working the night shift and weekends for years. I have very little sympathy to people who complain about having to work the occasional night shift or holiday. However, when I learned that the retail stores don't pay their people OT on Thanksgiving, I changed my opinion of those retailers. If you as a retailer are going to make people work a holiday and/or more than 8 hours in a single day, you should be paying them more then you normally do. Anything else is crap and exploitation of people who have no other real options than to work for you. Compared to the sales generated, an extra $4 or $5 an hour (or more) for the people who are the face of your company should be well worth the cost.
2012-11-23 05:00:05 AM
2 votes:

MadCat221: The opening on *thursday* crap has shown that Black Friday has jumped the shark. Retail corps have now sunk to new sociopathic lows defying the entire purpose of Thanksgiving, requiring their employees to forgo it to show up at a mandatory all-hands-on-deck event.


Agreed. I worked six years in retail (physical location, not including my business), plus two in the food court during high school. I have a little less respect for any of my friends who went shopping on Thursday. Partly because wtf, stay home with your own family, but more to the point: every single person who shops on Thanksgiving is contributing to the problem. Every single one of you. YOU are the reason (most) retail employees can now no longer have one of the three guaranteed days off of the year.

Anyone who spouts that bullshiat about 'they knew what they were signing up for'? Normally I abhor the wish of violence on innocent people, but I'm willing to make an exception in this case. You asked for it, so I hope you hit a deer or a patch of ice because you *had* to save $10.

It's not farking worth it to steal one of the few remaining holidays from your fellow man. Get over it.
2012-11-23 11:04:22 AM
1 votes:

My Bologna Has A Maiden Name: Even shorter guide: buy nothing. By all means, go out and about early and often and waste all the salespeople's time you can, but buy nothing. Take whatever free samples you can but buy nothing. Make it so expensive a proposition for them to ram a distant shame-driven waste fest down our throats that they are forced to cease the year 'round bombardment of christmas advertising. Force some reason upon society. Buy nothing.


Your funny.

/When Walmart posts record profits of a gazillion dollars every year, you actually think anyone's listening?
2012-11-23 10:51:03 AM
1 votes:
I won't shop on Black Friday, Thanksgiving day, or Christmas eve. Thanksgiving day and Christmas eve retail employees should be home. I understand too much about the sales on Black Friday after the years I worked in retail. In particular, there was big name clothing retailer, that is still quite popular, that kept us till 2, 3, or 4 in the morning. We stripped off price tags and re-tagged everything in the store raising the prices considerably. While we raised the prices, store managers went around putting 30% and 50% off signs on top of the fixtures. When we were done, the prices were higher than they had been before the big "sale".

When I worked retail, I also hated December 26. December 26 is the day lines go to the back of the store with returns. It's the day customers bring in products that have not been sold in 7 years; shirts with the color washed out, jeans falling apart at the seams, stuffed animals with the plush worn away. They bring these things in, hold up the lines, and pitch a fit until they are refunded some portion of the original sale price.

Those of us caught in the middle, who didn't approve of fake sales and didn't understand why the people "returning" an item they had used for 7 years weren't removed by security; spent a lot of time scowling and reciting "Tis the season to be theivin'."
2012-11-23 10:15:37 AM
1 votes:
Any one who goes shopping today is a moron. There are no real savings to be had. Those deeply discounted items are deliberately understocked and the retailers know, idiots will pay full price for other items just to say they shopped on black Friday. The Saturday before Xmas is when the real discounts begin.
2012-11-23 09:44:36 AM
1 votes:

ThatGuyFromTheInternet: NannyStatePark: ExperianScaresCthulhu: NannyStatePark: KrispyKritter: ladyfortuna: MadCat221: The opening on *thursday* crap has shown that Black Friday has...

Regarding your response to that wall of text, as an hourly employee I always knew at least a week in advance when I would be working. One's milage may vary, however, I would hesitate to equate the lack of traditional hours to a lack of stability. How are you screwed for making appointments when you are going to have a weekday off when otherwise you would have to miss work enirely? These whims of which you speak violate every employee arrangement I've ever had. Never have I been threatened with termination for refusing to cover a shift I wasn't properly scheduled for in any of my multiple hourly minimum wage jobs. I've worked for corporations and proprietorships in an at-will state in clerical, food service, retail and shipping. I'm also a mother of a teenager who actually knows a few things about stability in families as well.

It is possible to need to schedule one's life, *more* than one week ahead.


Which is yet again easier to do because you can trade shifts or just take a loss on the time. My husband is in IT, has a super important job, and is on call 24/7. We've had to leave Christmas parties because he had to work. I would hesitate to call him unstable, and I continue to plan my life hoping for no surprises.
2012-11-23 09:14:36 AM
1 votes:
Apparently only Apple makes tablets, smartphones or MP3 players.

Thanks for the information, Slate.
2012-11-23 09:11:36 AM
1 votes:
People whining about cheap Chinese plastic crap while judging people for participating in Black Friday fail to realize that if it weren't for some of these bargains kids would be going without the computers they need for school. My kids have internet access listed as a school supply in some of their classes. I refuse to judge people for doing whatever they can to save a buck.

49 percent of Americans are recieving public assistance. How dare those Philistines want to afford a luxury? When I think of the anguish my mother felt at the holidays when I grew up disadvantaged over trying to provide my family a nice Christmas, and I think of someone judging her for standing in line because it would be the only way to afford the NES we'd been begging her for over a year for, it makes me sick.
2012-11-23 08:08:43 AM
1 votes:

ladyfortuna: it's really bullshiat compared to a lot of other companies and holiday pay.


Mysterious 24hr stomach bug. Unless the it's time and a half at a minimum. Sorry but mandating people work on a public holiday with no additional (and substantial) financial renumeration for doing so is, as us Brits would say, bang out of order.
2012-11-23 07:45:22 AM
1 votes:

Vaneshi: ladyfortuna:

You're saying that the retail workers in America HAVE to work on a public holiday? For regular shift pay? Fark that, time to get a dose of the squits.


Not all of them, yet, but 10 or so years ago, very few retailers were open on turkey day at all. The last few years have seen more and more embrace it, and it is NOT voluntary for most of them as far as I know. I've seen at least a half dozen Walmart employees here and in my own friends complaining about it being mandatory, and all they get is an extra 10% off one transaction. Granted that can help if they saved up ahead of time and buy a lot, but... it's really bullshiat compared to a lot of other companies and holiday pay.
2012-11-23 07:42:06 AM
1 votes:

Butterflew: My bf wanted one of these. I reminded him that he already had a kindle paperweight at home.


seriously...what were they thinking calling it a paperwhite? aren't they just begging for that joke when a few of them start breaking?
2012-11-23 07:40:29 AM
1 votes:

KrispyKritter: ladyfortuna: MadCat221:

reading this it seems like a combo sour grapes / the pot calling the kettle black. if i worked in retail six years i too would be bitter about it. but it would be self-directed animosity, not outward directed. reminds me of how some veterans love to think their personal decision to play G.I. Joe is a license to mouth loud at everyone about what a hero they are and how they did it for us. it is not customers who are unlocking that door in the morning. that door is being unlocked as per corporate, and they only give damn about bottom line, not your holiday. myself, i'll have nothing to do with thurs or fri sales. when i shop its online. the more people that shop online, the fewer employment opportunities will exist for brick & mortar retail. maybe in a few years all those unemployed retail workers will be happily home for every holiday and every other day of the week while everyone shops online.


I actually ENJOY helping customers find what they want, especially when they're not familiar with the product options. I did my best for six years to steer them to good products instead of just the most expensive or flashiest. In all that time I never had a customer complaint either, so despite how angry/bitter I have been at times about corporate policies, I never took it out on the customers. If you've paid any attention to me at all in the last year or so, you'll note that I started my own online business, which was in great part because of what you mention. I'm even close to breaking even for the year despite setbacks.

I'm also technically a veteran, though I never deployed, but you will not catch me trumpeting my service as 'glorious'. I did personnel paperwork in the Reserves, so while that's an important background thing for individual soldiers, I don't feel all that proud of it and being praised actually makes me uncomfortable.

I'm bitter because in the corporate retail world, workers don't matter anymore, and it seems like a vast majority of the public doesn't make the connection between lowered service standards and all the corporate tricks designed to cut the bottom line at the expense of that. Shoppers just demand more junk they don't need at lower prices and something is going to break soon.
2012-11-23 07:10:37 AM
1 votes:

Dansker: Mikey1969: Omahawg: meh. i get a couple checks a year so what of it? i'm a notorious luddite though who has never owned a cell phone so i'm likely prejudiced but, damn, the royalties from e-book downloads are truly less than a pittance. i'm talking charles dickens orphans scrounging for alms and gruel in the gutter with the offal level of payment.

Which is stupid, considering that the prices for the books are almost the same as the prices for new hardcovers. It's a ripoff, and they have all kinds of things to justify the cots, but they're all bullshiat, they're just ripping you off. I love my nook, but I refuse to pay $15 for a book that cost them nothing to produce.

You obviously have a point; they save on printing and distribution. But sparring, editing, corrections, typesetting and marketing has a kind of cost. In extreme cases, the editor spends more time on the book than the author.

Writers already submit books in electronic formats, and all the publisher really has to foot the bill for is storage space.

Seriously, authors rarely submit manuscripts that are ready to print. They're as bad at spelling, punctuation and grammar as everybody else. And as bad at editing their own writing.

I'd like to hear how they justify ripping the authors off on top of it all...

I could be wrong, but I have noticed that novels I bought from Amazon seem to change price, depending on how far up the bestseller list they are: Low price to boost sales when nobody's buying, high when it's being ripped off the virtual shelves. If authors are getting percentages, only the ones nobody wants to read are being "ripped off".


OK, allow me to rewrite my statement, still the same end result.

Regardless of how writers actually submit their work, it still already has to be put into a digital format before being physically printed, they don't set type by hand, but the publishers sure want us to think they do for the ebooks...
2012-11-23 06:55:42 AM
1 votes:
As I'll be working 8 hours at an Apple retail store, followed by 5 hours at an overpriced clothing store, I am really not getting a kick out of this.
2012-11-23 06:23:25 AM
1 votes:

Omahawg:
then you have a better agent than me.


There is also the possibility that you're not a very good author.
2012-11-23 05:50:16 AM
1 votes:

Mad_Radhu: ladyfortuna: Mad_Radhu: e

For the love of god, just stop.

Sorry, didn't realize I was personally pissing in your Cheerios this morning.


Actually I'm still drinking beer and plan to continue for a while yet. Today is 'reset internal clock' day.
2012-11-23 05:10:33 AM
1 votes:

ladyfortuna: Mad_Radhu: e

For the love of god, just stop.


Sorry, didn't realize I was personally pissing in your Cherrios this morning.
2012-11-23 04:47:20 AM
1 votes:
Omahawg : go buy books, people! real books! they have pages and shiat! 

I hear it's possible to go buy the original scripts for the "books on tape."
2012-11-23 04:41:44 AM
1 votes:
imgace.com

go buy books, people! real books! they have pages and shiat!
2012-11-23 04:32:26 AM
1 votes:

Omahawg: meh. i get a couple checks a year so what of it? i'm a notorious luddite though who has never owned a cell phone so i'm likely prejudiced but, damn, the royalties from e-book downloads are truly less than a pittance. i'm talking charles dickens orphans scrounging for alms and gruel in the gutter with the offal level of payment.


I just pirate all of my Ebooks, shrug.

//feels bad about it
//sometimes
2012-11-23 04:27:23 AM
1 votes:
My plan to show up fashionably late worked out well again this year. I popped into Target about an hour after they opened, grabbed a few of the deals I was looking for, and got out. It seems like about one hour after opening is a good window to get some deals easily because the initial crowds have dispersed, and the store staff now has some time to start gathering up the various doorbusters left abandoned by customers who snatched them up in a hurry and then had second thoughts. There were Xboxes and Blu-Ray players scatted all through the store, and a little searching would generally find you what you were looking for.

Hell, I could have even grabbed the crazy doorbuster HDTV deal (a 50" Westinghouse for $350) if I wanted to. As I was wandering by the electronics staging area for the Black Friday deals, they were just hauling 6 of them out to the floor because no one who grabbed the tickets for them in line ever came to get them, so a couple of the staff were talking up the deal to people who were looking at the pallets of electronics. I'm betting some of the latecomers like me probably grabbed the deal while the people who were outside waiting in the cold just behind the last of the people who got tickets missed out because they probably already had gone home before the leftover inventory was brought out. For two years in a row, the strategy to hit the store about an hour after the doors open has worked out beautifully.
2012-11-23 04:16:18 AM
1 votes:

RedPhoenix122: Bucky Katt: Bah humbug. I'm going to give money to the Indians tomorrow ... at their casino.

You should do that, then take it back.


You should go to their poker table and then ante with some blankets and whiskey.
2012-11-23 03:47:08 AM
1 votes:

Bucky Katt: Bah humbug. I'm going to give money to the Indians tomorrow ... at their casino.


You should do that, then take it back.
2012-11-23 12:33:00 AM
1 votes:
I was actually thinking about buying a Kindle Paperwhite until I logged on and saw that it wouldn't ship until December 21st. December 21st? What the fark is that? Jesus, I thought online shopping was supposed to be efficient. Christ, give me a chance to stand in line for 10 hours and knife some schmuck in the back to get it by the weekend. Way to fail, Amazon.
 
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