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Buy Nothing On Black Friday

By Lauri Apple in Miscellaneous on Nov 26, 2008 5:45PM

PosterRed_t%5B1%5D.jpg Though rushing to the mall or local CrapMart the day after Thanksgiving has become trad for millions of Americans, many Americans spend Black Friday boycotting shopping altogether in protest. Buy Nothing Day -- promoted since the early 1990s by the zany culture jammers at Adbusters -- has become a holiday for anti-consumerist folk who enjoy taking a stand against all the shopping and spending that inevitably produces lots of debt, trash and disappointment (that American Apparel hoodie didn't really fix the interminable gnawing feeling in your soul, now did it?)

One can spend BND by safely staying at home and avoiding the crowds, or by participating in one of Adbusters' suggested celebratory activities: Cutting up people's credit cards (with their explicit permission!); walking around the mall like a zombie (can be difficult to stand out in the average suburban mall, where vacant TV Eyes are common, but you can try); or going to a store with some friends, grabbing shopping carts and then wheeling them around in silence without picking up any items for purchase. Actions planned in Chicago include a fur protest and a Zombie Walk down Michigan Ave.

If you just have to buy something on Black Friday, because you're anal like that, then you can avoid putting your cash money in the corpies' coffers by visiting your local thrift store. Buying second-hand doesn't mean you love someone less -- it just means that you also appreciate a good, eco-friendly deal, and your loved ones should either appreciate your common sense or just deal with it. This author has discovered brand-new items on the second-hand racks; look carefully and you might strike gold as well.

Other alternatives to buying include purchasing goods from one of our many local crafters (check back here after T-Day for a craft-fair round-up), making your own gifts, contributing to a nonprofit or charity in someone's name, or finding things in the trash.