Freddy Swan

When did this happen? Christmas has taken on its’ own Hollywood personality. December 25th has moved up in the batting order to the day after Halloween, the start of the holiday season. 

There are visions of sugarplums dancing down isles in every major retail store in America. St. Nicholas will surely grace the cover of Vogue before the fresh, fallen snow.

Huffington Post states, “Thanksgiving Day is no longer all about turkey: It’s eating away at Black Friday shopping.” Thanksgiving Day originated more than 200 years ago and is known as a day of rest, family gatherings and celebration. The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is a family tradition in households across the country.

In this frazzled, stressed-out society we live in, Thanksgiving Day should be set aside as a day of rest and rejuvenation. The last Thursday in November is a day to spend with loved ones and share a meal together.

Instead, the third Thursday in November is translating into unprecedented savings and the chance to purchase the hottest holiday gifts of the season. Not even Tom the turkey is immune to this modern-day phenomenon.

Will you allow tablets, laptops or cellphones at your dinner table? Retailers are opening their online sales earlier than ever this year. “Mobile purchases will account for 31 percent of total online sales on Turkey Day, compared to 21 percent in 2013, according to an Adobe holidays shopping forecast” (Adweek).

With all these deep discounts and savings, who has time to give thanks? Who can compete with the allure of BOGOs, brand names and limited editions? After the last piece of turkey and second helping of cranberry chutney it’s Dominic Toretto and Vin Diesel fast all the way to the nearest mall. Don’t forget that over-stuffed wallet, ready to dish out precious time and savings into the catacomb of holiday shopping.

Stores such as Macy’s, Sears, Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Kohl’s, Staples and Belk plan to open their doors at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving night. Dare to say, dinners have been snubbed to lunches and the day of thanks snubbed to the day of buying. Quality time is being stripped from the schedule.

According to Adobe, with an average discount of 24 percent, discounting the most-treasured gifts of the season, this new reality will be a hard one to ignore. According to a poll done here at Frederick Swanston, 13 percent will participate in holiday shopping and only two brave souls will venture out Thanksgiving evening.

Likewise, 67 percent of our office continues holiday traditions with their families and 87% cook their very own Thanksgiving feast. The History Channel cites, “The National Turkey Federation estimated that 46 million turkeys—one fifth of the annual total consumed in the United States—are eaten at Thanksgiving.”

The childlike wonder of the holiday season should include Thanksgiving, no matter the food or fancy stuffing. I believe the electronics could use a rest from the incessant, habitual typing of this digital age. In the end, we do live in America. The 27th of November is your day to do what you may.