Friday, November 25, 2011

Empty baskets on Black Friday

It’s black Friday, although I’m not entirely clear on the name since the sun is out here and it’s a beautiful day.  But nonetheless, people have already taken to the stores and are busy waiting in lines and swiping strange plastic rectangles.  I’m not such a fan of shopping, unless it’s at places that a) sell dog treats, b) drop a lot of food – i.e. food courts, or c) are filled with people eating who might share. 

I’m grateful that my mom doesn’t seem to be a shopper either.  She’s like a speed racer – running in, scanning the racks, and then running out, often empty handed.  She’s funny.  We’ll get in the checkout line with a basket of stuff, and one by one as we inch forward, she manages to talk herself out of each thing until our basket is empty and we don’t have to wait in line anymore. 

It seems to be something about need versus want.  There are few things she needs – and those she’s always good about stocking up on.  But then there are all of those things that she wants, and those seemingly are taboo.  I guess the rule is you’re not supposed to want things that you don’t need because that makes you spoiled or selfish or greedy or materialist, all very very very bad things apparently. 

It makes sense not to buy things that you might not use or if you have no money and are living in a box, then clearly just stick with the need items.  But we have this cozy apartment and since she spoils me with new treats and toys, I would think that she could get at least the same treatment.  Plus, she’s always good about buying gifts for people – even ‘just because I love you’ gifts but again, for her not so much. And yet, things that she wants she doesn’t like to admit.  She likes to appear want-less, bordering on need-less, as if that makes her a better person.  

But it’s a lie.  I know it because I see how she can fill up shopping carts with cute sweatshirts and new hats, journals and trinkets.  Not that we come home with any of them because they all fall into the category of want and therefore end up back on the shelves. 

Don’t get me wrong – I’m thrilled we weren’t lined up at 3 am to cash in on black Friday sales today and I can think of better ways to spend a weekend than in the mall.  But still, I think that my mom should get to have wants and still not be spoiled or greedy. 

And if I had opposable thumbs and my own strange plastic card, I’d help but until then, I’ll just hope she learns how to give herself “just because I love you” gifts.

1 comment:

  1. I agree with Gracie. Mom needs to give herself "just because I love you" gifts too.