Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday

First…I say Happy Thanksgiving to my U.S. readers. Traditionally it has been a day of giving thanks (you can read about my ramble on giving thanks on Wax Porhetoric) to what we are thankful for in life yet it has become a increasingly popular as the time to start shopping on “Black Friday”, the day after Thanksgiving where there are shopping deals around. People wake up at crazy early hours to hit the stores for deal after deal. Interestingly enough, the following Monday has become known as “Cyber Monday” as online shopping has become more and more popular.

What will be interesting to see this year is just how the numbers play out. The world economy has been shaken up. The U.S. market is scary, housing is beaten to hell, unemployment rates are scary high, it’s just a rough scene out there. How will that affect Black Friday and Cyber Monday? On one hand, you’d think people would spend less, thus retail sales SHOULD be lower. However, we are in the U.S., a nation of consumers and spenders. Remember what President Bush urged Americans to do after the attacks on 9/11? He urged us to go out and shop. I guess that’s the American thing to do now. So…what WILL happen? Will shoppers be much more thrifty? Or do more comparison shopping? Perhaps shop to take their minds off their current situation?

Me…I’ll be taking it easy. I WANT to buy stuff but I know I shouldn’t. I saw 50″ HDTVs on sale for under $700. Oh how I’d love one of those. But alas…easing my debt load is a bit more pressing right now. Instead, I’ll be watching the markets, seeing if the major retailers can report good numbers and also see how the Internet traffic will be handled. I still chuckle when I hear about systems buckling under the load of Cyber Monday traffic. C’mon people…haven’t we had enough time to practice time and time again and prepare for the increased traffic?

Happy Thanksgiving to my American readers and a happy day to everyone else.