Are you caught in the trap?

By Cassandra Walker

Many Americans suffer from this syndrome. I doubt that most would admit it, but it is confirmed year after year. The number of men and women falling into this epidemic is breath taking. No other society, it seems, is sinking as deeply as we are. Yet, we continue in this lifestyle with each passing year.

Of course, I am talking about the holiday shopping rut. Why is it so easy to get caught up in the “Biggest shopping day” of the year event?

Bloodshot-eyed consumers wake at the crack of dawn and stumble to their cars. The parking lots are full before the sun has had time to peek its head out and shine. Tiny tots are in tow, wiping the sleep from their eyes. Crazed parents have shopping lists as long as a city bus, while holding store advertising flyers tighter than stretch pants on a linebacker.

The doors open, and there is a mad dash into the isles. People are fighting for position like they are in a roller-derby contest. Normally gentle grandmothers have jousted a few slow-moving patrons with the end of their shopping carts. Overgrown men are fighting over the last “dream doll” as if their lives depended on it.

The ads in the paper promise quality and service. Not to mention 50 percent off for the first 100 shoppers. Store clerks are inundated with request for rain checks, in-store-only coupons and a little bribery of a few dollars, if they can let “Mrs. Money bags” in early through the back door.

The holiday season is among us and instead of socks stuffed with goodies, you might get socked in the eye if you cut in line. Replacing the spirit of good tidings and gladness is manic shoppers and madness. All in the name of a $30 rebate.

Some well-prepared consumers have finished their shopping months ago. They, unlike many, have planned out to the very detail who will get what and how much will be spent. They are smart, organized and just plain annoying to the rest of us procrastinators. They will never be caught in one of these frenzied money-spending sprees. They won’t, but millions of others will.

I don’t understand why, each year during holiday season, it becomes more and more shopper “survival of the fittest.” It seems ridiculous to put one’s self through the crowded, fast-paced, over-advertised mayhem they call holiday shopping. Why do they do it?

I can say I walked away this year with only minor cuts and bruises.

Next year, I’ll wear my chin guards.

Thanks for sharing

Cassandraism: Amidst the hustle and bustle, don’t forget to give to those less fortunate this holiday season.