The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Where were you at 5AM?

Today is Black Friday. The start of the Christmas shopping season, the day when people become mindless shoppers frantically trying to get the best deal possible on anything. People stay up all night, they camp out in front of stores and malls waiting for the highly anticipated early opening. A friend of mine was shopping at 4 AM today.

I appreciate a bargain as much as anyone, believe me, but I won't get up in the wee hours of the morning to find it. Nothing is that important to me. The savings are not that important to me. Shopping is something I dislike fairly intensely. I won't go out of my way to do it. I don't clip coupons nor do I pore over the various ads sent as junk mail looking for things I want or might need. I don't run around using up $3 a gallon (almost) gas to save 50 cents on some item. It's just not that important to me.

Yes, I seem to be in the minority. I can live with that. I would rather have control over my time than travel with the thundering herd in search of that One Great Bargain. It may have something to do with my hard core procrastination, of course. Still, I feel better not being jostled by huge crowds all seeking to grab the last Tickle Me Elmo on the shelf for "half off" because I suspect there are cases of them back in the storeroom. And they will be trotted out just as soon as the store closes.

Why would I want what everyone else wants anyway? Why would I want my child growing up thinking he (or she) must have the latest fad toy or gizmo or he'll (or she'll) be a failure in the eyes of his (or her) friends?

I just don't get it. Am I an Ebeneezer Scrooge at heart? Maybe. I am not a big fan of the consumerism of Christmas. I rather like the joy of seeing a child open presents but I remember the disappointment I felt as a child when the last present was unwrapped and I realized there were no more gifts. When all the gifts were unwrapped, when the neatly stacked boxes and packages under the tree have been turned into piles of torn wrapping paper and empty boxes, the best memories I have of Christmas begin. The hot cocoa, the paper wad fights between myself and my siblings, the trip to Grandma's house for the family get together. The rest is just "stuff."

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