Sunday, November 30, 2014

Pick Your Priorities

Yesterday was Small Business Saturday. A day where the country is encouraged to shop locally and support their communities.
It is a great idea. It , however needs better timing.  Small Business Saturday comes after the national day of greed otherwise known as Black Friday.( The irony rolled up in the name has just too much commentary for me to even begin). I wish it came before and we frenzied on supporting the people we do life with on a daily basis.

Black Friday entices the best of us to grab the  savings and check off  our Christmas purchases.
Hey I am not one to knock a deal. I currently stalk Hobby Lobby for sales, have a Cartwheel Target App and get FB alerts when my local thrift store has a 10 for $10 (That is an actual thing).
But when the reality of a need is superseded by the "deal" itself, we have been had. It is like when you discover that You have actually been trained by your dog to do something when all the deceived while you thought you were in control. (Some of you have just had a stunning realization- I've been there. Canines are really smart.)

I knew you would catch me

I'm here for you Lord.
 Let's face it when sacrificing sleep;
something I presently require an Act of God to interrupt
(and He has )
in order to get a bargain ,means we have been replaced as the Alpha.
You no longer have control. The sale, the deal, The Man does. 

Not only are we  sacrificing sleep, money, and priorities but our dignity as well. Here are just a few examples:  

Stock Market or Black Friday?

All Dignity Gone.

Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter...

what the heck?

I can hear the groans now. That is just so negative. Its fun. I got great deals. I needed this. Okay so the day after Thanksgiving is not the National Day of Evil, but it has become a Monster people. And Monsters continue to live only when they are fed.
It has moved from the start of the Christmas giving  season to an excuse to make others work ON Thanksgiving  through the entire night and continue the madness past 24 hours of frenzy.  The only people pulling the graveyard shift should be power plants, police and emergency services. And maybe the graveyard attendants. Are those real careers?  Hmm... must be pretty quiet. I bet you could bring a book and get paid to read or better yet blog. Gotta look into that; I'm a night owl.   What? oh sorry . Did I go off on a ADD side bar ? Sorry that happens every now and then. Or as my husband likes to say " You thinking at out loud again "

Where was I? Oh yes Black Friday. The bottom line is it has turned into madness. People camp out, stay up all night, brave the elements and get this : fight each other for crap they do not need.
Yeah I went there...the  item of your desire is not needed.  
Entertainment is important when stalking deals.

It ain't bread people.
It's not a form of shelter.
It's not a vaccine, basic clothing or clean water.

It's stuff.
 I have stuff.  I like stuff.  Stuff is fun, I get it.
But when stuff becomes the center, we are no longer on point. We no longer are in control; it is in control.
That alone is enough to make me stop, collaborate and listen. 

 I am nothing if not a control freak ( if you have any amount of estrogen running thorough you I know you can relate.)  I love sticking it to the system with my 40% off plus another 20% and a gift card purchase. I justify my "it was buy one get one free so why would I just get one half off" theory.   But when I realized how effortless my "smart" ways were apply to things off priority and were more about winning the game, (which is the retail lie of all time- the house always wins).  I was kinds sick to my stomach. In a fetal position-I should nap now so I don't have to think about how weak I am- kinda way.

I just celebrated Thanksgiving with a warm bed, warm food and a warm family and now I am supposed to brave the cold weather with a cold attitude for a "hot" deal? . Oh Irony let me count the ways.
 I haven't given in to the machine for several years now  and I want to encourage others rethink  their habits.  Not criticizing just asking you to take inventory. Inventory of things where people can break in and steal and  where moth and rust will win out in the end and inventory of things stored up as intangible treasure that can't be stolen or destroyed. Which list would be longer?
I want my intangible list to be longer.

  As a Jesus chick, these are my instructions, so it matters.  I want time with my kids, snuggling with my spouse, celebrating with others, meeting others needs, a good long walk, a deep prayer and tons of hugs to flow over  my Ipad, shoes, and dare I say my Hobby Lobby basket.  But it's a Christian company right? --isn't that like shopping for Jesus? (insert eye roll and another story)

So basically it comes down to this, Black Friday demands two things of me : My time and my money. I was once told that if you want to know where your priorities lie, look where you spend your time and your money.
O-U-C-H.  Black Friday doesn't deserve either. Mine or yours.

This year I really stuck it to the system I worked and made money ( not retail) and then I came home put on my PJ's and sat on the front porch (much to the disgust of my children), eating leftovers  and playing reverse charades with my tribe Ha! Take that greed machine. My presence was undoubtedly felt. (where is my sarcasm font?).

But the bottom line is this: There will be no supply where there  is not a demand. I hope little by little (read:  by storm)  people will choose to be in control, prioritize and stay in their Pj's on the porch; if for no other reason to savor the horrified look on  their children's  faces.  


Now that is an intangible moment stored up that no one can steal.