The Rev. Kym Lucas writes for a Diocese of Washington weblog:
I will be one of the crazy people shopping on Black Friday.
For most of my adult life I managed to shun this cultural insanity. I avoided all post-Thanksgiving retail. I prided myself on thoughtful, “real meaning of Christmas” practices, not to mention a year round hunt for perfect gifts. A while back, my return to full-time church leadership and the arrival of my twins smashed both of those high-minded ideals, and my sister J, sensing my despondency, talked me into my first Black Friday outing. Her reasoning was compelling: “One night of hell and you won’t have to worry about anything but Advent.”
So, that year I became a “tag-a-long” to my younger sister as she orchestrated our Christmas shopping endeavors. She scouted inventory, studied opening times, and plotted driving routes; she even scheduled coffee and snack breaks. Yet for all of her tactical shopping skills (and they are many), the best gift my sister gave me was the way she behaved.