Ready, Set, FEAST!

I know this week is a short one at work for most. There are turkeys and stuffing and pies to think about, and the thought of 3 or 4 or 5 days away from your job; the myriad things you can do…shop, decorate, visit with friends and family. Laugh, relax. EAT.

So, I offer here just two things.

FIRST

A Public Service Announcement; offered with the gentlest of smiles, and the sincerity of years on the other side. (At a job I ENJOY, and believe I am good at, thank you. Despite my little rants, I am a professional and expect the same from my staff at all times.)

Be KIND to the people you meet on Black Friday: The throngs of likeminded holiday shoppers who are determined in any way possible to make Christmas dreams come true. Think back to Thursday, when you sat, stuffed at the Thanksgiving table, and remember this….

It’s your day off. As was Thursday, as will be Saturday and Sunday. While you are scurrying about, trying to locate the best and brightest (and the cheapest) don’t take it out on the unfortunate other shopper who got to the parking space first. Park in “Outer Siberia” (the ring road around any mall) and walk, breath deeply, enjoy the briskness of the season, and worry not over getting the spot closest to the door. You will be liberated by this small lack of stress.

Recall this, as well. Chant it as a mantra if you must. “I do NOT need to buy everything TODAY.” You have 26 more days to find the perfect gift. (If you can’t find it in 26 days, is it possible you have over-thought or over-bought in years gone by? Let go, and go for less than perfect.)

And please, be aware that the poor harried cashier, stock boy, sales person, or even store manager is NOT personally out to get you, to ruin your day or you child’s holiday.

Generally speaking, it’s not their fault if the advertised item is out of stock by the time you got there. (They don’t hoard things, waiting for the saddest story, the most forlorn face, before they whip the item out from behind a curtain with a flourish. They want it sold. They had it, they sold it. Sorry.)

That there aren’t any more shopping carts is really not something they can control.  If all the registers are running, the lines can’t really be blamed on the cashiers. (Possibly it’s the person she is with, who INSISTS that every item is on sale, and needs price checks?)

If all the registers are not up, it may be someone came down with the flu, or is helping someone in aisle 12, or is stuck trying to get into the parking lot (or possibly just needed a pee break.)

That a salesperson can not answer to your satisfaction questions (simplex or complex) that you pose about an item is more the product of Corporate not allowing enough and early hiring, or training to the level that the store management might prefer, and that the customer would prefer.

Your salesperson was likely hired a few weeks ago, at something close to minimum wage (currently $7.25 an hour… not enough to be thinking about buying most of what you have in your cart) and has no guarantee that her job will last more than the next thirty days. It may be her first job ever, it may be a second job so that she can buy Christmas gifts for her kids.

But, yes, she is happy for the job. (For that $7.25, how much rudeness and carrying on of shoppers could you put up with, still with an almost smile on your face?)

She arrived at work at 4:30 AM or is looking at the disaster of the sweater department with the sinking realization that she will not be leaving work until long after midnight.

Speak to a Corporate entity on Monday about the fact there weren’t more cashiers or sales people the floor, if you must. But know this. The store manager was given very stringent payroll that he or she MUST come in on. And to do that, they likely have worked and will work 6 or 7 day weeks till the new year.

Remember too, that these people gave up time with their family and friends on this holiday weekend so that on YOUR day off, you could shop.

SECOND

I wish you the blessing of loved ones surrounding you, happy times, and many opportunities for you to look about you and realize all that you have to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Now, go EAT!

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4 thoughts on “Ready, Set, FEAST!

  1. “I do not need to buy everything today.” You have 26 days to find the best gifts. (If you can not find in 26 days it is possible to buy more than you think over in the missing? To go and to be less than complete.) Agree with the ideas here.

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  2. I know if everyone were like me retail would be out of a job and UPS would be hiring like mad. Maybe I’m missing something but I love Black Friday from den computer chair. Amazon has sales all this week. But yes indeed, have mercy on the poor souls who work the stores this day.

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  3. black friday is also known as BUY NOTHING DAY. it was started 20 years ago by ADBUSTERS magazine. it is now recognized world wide as a day of protest against the big corporate machine. i have not spent money (except in local food establishments) on black friday in 18 years! make you own gifts. or buy from a local crafts person. keep the money local and your community will be stronger!

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  4. Gotta agree, I never shop on Black Friday if I can help it. I’m probably amazon.com’s best customer. Like Timmy, I prefer the comfort of my armchair.

    So I wish you and all retail workers polite customers and peaceful days. And for those shoppers who just have to complain… shut the heck up!

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