Well, it's Black Friday again. I sincerely hope you and your loved ones remain un-trampled and filled with holiday spirit or, if retailers got their wish, with carloads of merchandise.
Since 2005, the nerdy cousin to Black Friday has been Cyber Monday. Traditionally, and I hesitate to even use that word considering the concept is only six years old, it is the Monday after Thanksgiving, when online retailers hammer away at grumpy employees back at work after a long weekend and ready to surf the Web in search of deals instead of working.
For retailers, it is a way to extend the most important shopping weekend of the year. After all, Black Friday got its name from the idea that a big sales day could put stores in the black financially. Around the Houston Press offices, we dig nerds. In fact, some of us even resemble them. As an ode to Cyber Monday, I offer you the five reasons you should abandon Black Friday in favor of the geekiest shopping day of the year.
5. There are no crowds.
Let me get the obvious out of the way right off the bat. More to the point, there are no stinky, biting, stabbing, punching, angry mobs tired from lack of sleep but wired from coffee and Red Bull. And there's no traffic in your house, unless you count your children or your cats, which is just sad.
4. Some deals start as early as November 7.
Seriously, Staples, one of the first really big-box retailers to truly embrace online holiday sales, starts their deals on November 7. Plus, there are all sorts of sites for getting deals like Groupon, Living Social, Woot and even our own Voice Daily Deals. Why sit outside a Best Buy in a tent for a week when you can just get the stuff you'll never use anyway in October?
3. Naked shopping.
It's time we discuss the elephant in the room. For years now, many have tried to hide their more embarrassing bedroom habits. But, you are not alone. Yes, people like to shop in the nude. It had to be said and, God knows, I feel better. Going into Walmart naked will probably get you arrested -- you better hope that's all you get -- so, just stay at home and shop in the buff to your little heart's content. Your long sad shame is at an end, my friend.
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2. No Christmas music.
Look, I like Christmas music. I'm listening to it as I write this because it gets me in the mood to demand you buy many gifts for the holidays to save the economy. God bless America! But, if you don't like Christmas music, especially the tripe that is piped over the speaker systems at Target -- the Chipmunks' Christmas must die! -- Cyber Monday is your best chance of escape...until you have to buy groceries.
1. Getting gifts in the mail is awesome.
Tell me you don't freaking love getting stuff in the mail. You don't? Liar! Despite the fact that the U.S. Postal Service is rotting on the vine thanks to electronic communication, there isn't yet a way to e-mail a physical package to someone -- get on that, science! For those of us who grew up before the Internet, there's a real magic to seeing a package on our doorsteps, even if it is a gift for someone else. After all, it could be a Red Rider BB gun or a beautiful leg lamp!