BLACK IS BLACK, OR IS IT?
Usually, “BLACK” is used as a description of something negative and bad, depicting anything dark and evil. Just think about black guard or villain, Europe’s Black Death, a pirate’s black flag, black eye, black magic, blackmail of even a blackhead pimple! Black Friday on the other hand, represents a very profitable shopping day. Who would say ‘no-thank-you’ to all those great bargains up for grabs? No matter the current state of the economy, most shoppers would gladly take advantage of such a sweet opportunity!
WHAT’S IN A NAME?
Now where did Black Friday have its origin and why this peculiar name? Once upon a time, long ago (before 1961) it all started in Philadelphia, USA. The day following their Thanksgiving Day was called Black Friday, due to heavy disrupting vehicle and pedestrian traffic. From there the trend would slowly progress elsewhere. These days, it is the fourth Friday of November. The Christmas shopping season also has its unofficial kick-off on Black Friday.
THE “BLACK GUARDS”
Where there is a crowd, unfortunately, there is usually a villain, or so called black guard as by the Oxford dictionary, keeping security officials on their toes! Large crowds are also sometimes synonymous with chaos. Quite a few incidents were reported in the USA since the late 2000’s. One man was trampled to death by a stampeding crowd, a shoplifter stabbed a security guard, some fighting occurred over a parking space, shop assistants were crushed against merchandise and a woman pepper sprayed fellow shoppers.
TO BE OR NOT TO BE …
What about here in South Africa? We all know, as The United States of America is usually on the forefront of the latest trends, the rest of the world is following. This is exactly the case with Black Friday. Even locally, merchants and consumers equally take full advantage of this new trend. Hopefully, things will never get out of hand here and that this curious day will remain a positive experience to all.
WHAT, WHERE, WHEN?
In South Africa, this year Black Friday will be hosted by various businesses on 29 November.