I used to be indecisive…

…but now I'm not so sure

Friday letters – the Black Friday edition


Dear Black Friday,  When did you start to become something that we ‘celebrate’ here in the UK?  We do not celebrate Thanksgiving, so how can we have a Black Friday (which is the day after Thanksgiving when many stores open early and have huge sales)?  I am beginning to get a bit annoyed by it all.  My email inbox is being flooded with Black Friday offers from everyone I have ever bought anything from online, in fact several more have popped in while I have been writing this post.  Can’t we just stick to the traditions that we already have without bringing in another one?

Dear cyclists,  Here I go again, but I am about to have another rant regarding cyclists.  Please, please, please can you make sure you wear something bright when you are cycling, especially now that the mornings and evenings are dark.  What chance does a motorist have of seeing a cyclist if you are wearing dark clothes, a dark hat and have no lights on your bike?  I am always worried that I am not going to see one of you until it is too late.  It isn’t so bad during the day times, but when it’s dark the street lights are on (if there are any) and the cars have their headlights on which causes a little bit of dazzle sometimes, then the chances of seeing you are greatly reduced.  And while I am on the subject of cyclists, please can you ride on the road where you should be and not on the pavement/footpath where the pedestrians are supposed to be?  I walked out of my house on Wednesday to go to work and was nearly knocked over by a cyclist being pulled along at quite a speed by his dog, which was on a lead.  A day or two ago I had to step aside on the pavement while a cyclist rode her bike towards me – she wasn’t planning to move out of my way.  Often there are teenagers cycling to school – on the pavement – what are they doing there?  If it is small children who are on their bikes, I don’t mind so much, but not adults.  Get onto the road where you belong!!

Dear old people in supermarkets,  Yes, it’s you again – you really do need to learn some good aisle etiquette so that you can take your time with your shopping and I can quickly pick up the things I need.  It’s usually groups of you standing chatting, or individuals pushing their supermarket trolley in front of them whilst pulling their wheeled shopping bag behind them who get in my way, but yesterday there was a new hazard – the wheeled walker-with-a-seat.  These things are quite wide, and the lady in question was pottering along browsing the shelves, with no awareness of the fact that she was blocking the aisle.  Then there are the ditherers who can’t decide what they want to look at – they step forward, then back, then forward again, then to the side, then they change their minds and move much further down the aisle and start it all again.  Perhaps we need to develop some kind of supermarket shopping awareness test for the over 80s.

Dear readers,  I’m afraid I’ve been rather grumpy so far with these letters, but I do feel a lot better now that I have got those things off my chest!

Happy Friday!



20 thoughts on “Friday letters – the Black Friday edition

  1. Cyclists here drive me mad! I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve walked round the corner by the train station only to find a cyclist zooming towards me on the pavement. One of these days, I’m going to get hit by one!

  2. Ouch!
    I’m debating whether to show your rant to your Mother 😉

  3. I LOVE your gentle grumpiness!

  4. Almost got ran down by a cyclist today doing around 100kph around Burley Griffin Lake as I stepped forward to photograph a tree. I mean, really?

  5. Here in the USA, Black Friday has spilled into Thanksgiving Day, which I find very offensive. Personally, I do not go shopping on Black Friday, will not battle the crowds. And as to those blocking the aisles of stores – people of all ages have mastered that art here, it seems. I take deep breaths and dredge up what patience I might have left. Or I try.

  6. Black Friday is called Black Friday because it is the day that stores start to move from being in the red with their accounts to being in the black. And I think that’s a phenomenon that is world-wide and not just here in the US. 🙂 Sorry that our insanity is starting to trend around the world. I wish Christmas hadn’t become so commercialized that it’s more about the shopping than the joy of the season, whether Christian or not, sharing time with friends and family and basking in the one time each year we think more about loving each other Han our differences. Hope you have a very happy holiday season, whichever holiday(s) you choose or not choose to celebrate this year.

    • Apparently this year is the first year it has been an actual event here, and been called Black Friday. I’m sure we just used to call them November Sales, or pre-Christmas Sales. I agree it’s such a shame that Christmas has become so commercialised- it was so much simpler in the ‘olden days’.

  7. Very valid gripes, Elaine. As for Black Friday, I don’t think there are any real bargains to be had, so I don’t even go there. Supermarkets are the pits anyway, but dithery shoppers always make it worse. You should try Walmart shopping, where it seems that every other person is sitting on one of those mobile walkers, and they’re not even old, just too big to walk far. 😦

  8. You can always vent to your friends Elaine…we’re happy to sympathise with you. It’s the same here with cyclists even though the law says they should be on the road. And as for oldies at the supermarket, it’s best to avoid shopping altogether on pension day. And they’re not much better on the roads. This morning I was following one doing 40 km in a 60 km zone…tootling along oblivious to the rest of the world.

    • Thank you – it is good to know that I am not alone in my irritations. The law here is that cyclists should be on the road, but nothing seems to be done about it. I used to be able to avoid shopping on pension day, because I knew which day it was, but now it seems they shop on every day of the week and there is no escape! Ah, the tootling driver…now there’s another irritating thing!

  9. Although I now live in the United States, I’m originally from Canada, which means Black Friday was an alien event to me. Now I know what the day means but, aside from hearing horror stories, I have yet to experience the horrors which I hear about it. Oh, I do have to deal with the ads, coupled with protests against it. Otherwise though, I just stay inside and enjoy having a long weekend. 🙂

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