As some people sat back in their chairs and sighed Thursday after finishing their Thanksgiving Day feast, others may have been shoveling that turkey and gravy in as fast as they could in order to be one of the first few people in line at stores offering great Black Friday deals.
Because now, Black Friday is really a misnomer. It should be called Forget-About-Thanksgiving-We-Have-Stuff-To-Sell-You Thursday.
I'll admit it, I'm a Black Friday shopper. I have fond memories of going Black Friday shopping with my mom as a kid. We'd get up early and head out for the stores around 5 a.m. We were never wait-in-line people. We preferred to simply brave the crowds, and if what we were looking for was still there, we took it as providence. After shopping, we'd go out for a late breakfast, which was one of the more exciting aspects of the day for me, since we didn't go out to eat all that often when I was growing up.
I'm trying to imagine now, my mother and father at the dinner table with me and my two brothers, my dad carving up the turkey, the smell of mashed potatoes and pierogis (a Stark family Thanksgiving tradition), and only having a bite of my dinner in order to leave with enough time to get a good spot in line before the stores open at 8 p.m.
It's a travesty, but the simplest way to combat the encroachment of Black Friday on our Thanksgiving holiday is to simply not go and wait for Friday morning. But for some people, that's just not an option.
So I implore the chain stores, please, don't take away my Thanksgiving.
Of all the holidays we get to celebrate throughout the year, Thanksgiving is my favorite. It's a time for us to celebrate our humanity and a sense of good will.
It's simply an added bonus that it's also one of the few days when it's acceptable to eat your weight in turkey and stuffing, wait for an hour, and attempt to have a slice of pumpkin pie.
It brings families together for what is often lamented as missing from our daily lives - a home-cooked meal shared by the entire family as they sit together around the dinner table.
I'd be willing to bet that when people look back on time spent with their families and feel all warm and fuzzy, they're not remembering that time in the mall when dad got creamed by somebody trying to dive for the last 42-inch television priced at 60 percent off.
It's much more likely those warm and fuzzy feelings will come from a memory centered around family, food and conversation.
I hope most of us remembered that this Thanksgiving season.
And if you didn't head out on Black Friday in order to preserve your Thanksgiving holiday, remember that today is Small Business Saturday, and you can still get those great deals on gifts for the whole family, while also supporting local businesses.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Jackie Stark is a Chocolay Township resident and a staff reporter at The Mining Journal. Her column appears bi-weekly. She can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 242. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.