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What's the Deal With Black Friday?

Updated on November 17, 2019
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James has won several awards on articles ranging anywhere from killer asteroids to becoming an excellent getaway driver. #HoBoTrails

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The Black Friday Obsession

People Go Crazy Over Black Friday

Black Friday is not a National Holiday, however, you wouldn't think so with all the chaos and mayhem it seems to create. I mean... some people have actually died during a Black Friday sale.

People flock to retail stores and will wait, sometimes for hours, for stores to open - some will open at midnight when Black Friday officially starts. Some people have even camped out days in advance in front of store before Black Friday to guarantee a 'first place' in line status.

But how did all this happen? Who started this? How did the first Friday after Thanksgiving get called Black Friday?
Find out these questions and more by continuing to read this HUB.

How did Black Friday Start?

The Philadelphia Police Department Named the Friday after Thanksgiving 'Black Friday'

Black Friday (when referring to shopping) Started in 1961

FYI: Although the Philadelphia Police Department named the Friday after Thanksgiving "Black Friday" back in the 1960s, the term has been around since the 1860s...really.

The Philadelphia Police Department, bus & cab drivers all refer to the Friday after Thanksgiving Black Friday because of how heavy car & pedestrian traffic became back in 1961. People were rude, quick-tempered and even sometimes became violent.


The two (2) days following Thanksgiving are the BUSIEST shopping days of the year; Friday being the BUSIEST, which is why it has it's own name!

Black Saturday?

For a little while, people use to call the Saturday after Thanksgiving "Black Saturday", but it didn't really stick. It didn't have that ring like Black Friday does.
The Deputy City Representative even tried changing the term Black Friday into something more positive. Abe Rosen wanted to change it to "Big Friday" & "Big Saturday" back in 1966, but it didn't work - Black Friday sounded way cooler.


The police may refer to Black Friday because of ALL the chaos, but retailers refer to Black Friday as a day of profit because at the end of the day business is "in the black".

Now for the Stuff You Want to Read About Black Friday

Bad Black Friday Stories

Consumers on Black Friday can be Dangerous - Literally!

Black Friday may be the first day of the Christmas shopping season, but it also can be the first day in a hospital bed, behind bars or even dead!

That's right.
Consumers beware, and PLEASE, shop at your own risk. Be aggressive, show no fear & never, ever back down from intimidating customers.These are tough words, and if you're going to risk life & limb for a super deal you'd better live by them - at least for that day.


Back in the year 2010, in Madison, Wisconsin, a woman got arrested outside a Toys-R-Us store for cutting in line and threatening to shoot anyone who would object...say what?
That's right.
And a Toys-R-Us store at that.
Can you believe a Toys-For-Tots volunteer was stabbed by a shoplifter in Georgia? Well, it's true.


In Indianapolis a woman walked around inside a Wal-Mart store starting arguments with other shoppers - for no reason. She was asked to leave but refused. She eventually got arrested.
In a Florida Wal-Mart, a man was noticed carrying a handgun loosely inside of his coat and was reported to police. When apprehended they found not only a gun, but two knives and a pepper spray grenade. He came prepared.
The most famous unfortunate incident that happened at Wal-Mart was back in 2008. A 34-year-old employee at a Valley Stream, New York Wal-Mart opened the door at 5:00am and got trampled to death.

Taverns Usually in Full Bloom

While the women are at the shopping malls, the men are at the taverns.
While the women are at the shopping malls, the men are at the taverns.

Retail stores aren't the only businesses that thrive heavily during Black Friday. The alcohol service industry sees a slight push ahead as well. Bars, taps, pubs and every other type of drinkery can usually see a slight rise in "male" customers. What sparks the start of the holiday shopping season is when the men start complaining how much the women are spending... especially on Black Friday.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2012 James Timothy Peters


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