Home > else, slowness > buy nothing day – Friday, November 23

buy nothing day – Friday, November 23

November 17, 2007 Leave a comment Go to comments

Next Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year. Insane amounts of $$$ will be spent on garbage that no one needs. Youtube will again be full of vids of people getting run over at Wal?Mart to buy the three 29.99 DVD players they have available. Soccer moms will be fist fighting in mall parking lots over parking spots for their SUVs of mass destruction.

Why is it such a big day? Because we have been told it’s supposed to be. Everyone is off work (unless of course you happen to work retail), Christmas is so close that you have to be in panic mode (only 32 shopping days left! – 32?), and God knows you won’t want to sit around all day with your family. How much more fun to get up before dawn and hit the sales with your shopping commando pals (complete with walkie talkies and probably tazers to take out the competition) and scan that plastic until it melts to fill shopping carts and minivans with stuff to replace the stuff you will have to throw out to make room for the stuff you just bought. I’m exhausted thinking about it.

For a few years now I have participated in Buy Nothing Day. It’s an effort sparked by adbusters to encourage people all over the world to walk away from mass consumption and spend at least one day not contributing to the orgy of consumerism that has become the celebration of the birth of Jesus. The day isn’t necessarily about doing away with gifts altogether (although adbusters also promotes “buy nothing Christmas“), but about stopping to think before you buy and not getting swept away by what you have been told you (and everyone you know) need. It’s about rethinking shopping habits for 24 hours. And maybe altering them. We have.

Check out the BND site for some great alternative (and for the more daring – adbusting) ideas.  I love the idea of collecting a ton of ads and catalogs from a particular company and dropping them off at customer service. If only I knew enough people who weren’t using theirs.

  1. silvercharm
    November 17, 2007 at 12:05 pm

    Thank you for the interesting article on ‘buy nothing day’. I’m from Canada & don’t know enough details about it. Has it been successful? Are more people taking an interest in it? I’m sure big business isn’t too happy about it – which brings to mind the issue of corporations growing so large & powerful that their control over society has become frightening. The Canadian media is now controlled by only a few huge companies. One such firm owns newspapers {buying out independents}, radio stations, t.v. stations, etc.
    It’s up to the grassroots to reject all this monopolization and consumerism. I hope buy nothing day catches fire, and people send a message to big business!

  2. j
    November 17, 2007 at 10:52 pm

    Quite honestly – there aren’t enough people aware of BND to make a blip in the numbers on Black Friday. 1000 people lined up outside a Wal?Mart trumps one family staying home every time.
    Maybe someday.

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