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Bug-Mashing Monday 2017/11/20

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1lorannen
Nov 20, 2017, 3:50pm Top

It's Monday again! Time to kill some bugs!

Sorry this thread is up a little late—it's been a hectic morning.

2lorannen
Edited: Nov 20, 2017, 3:51pm Top

Wiki update: we're closing in on finishing the migration in the next day or so. I'll be posting to the relevant thread (https://www.librarything.com/topic/273720) once that's done. As I mentioned there, we thought we had one solution in place, but that fell through at the last minute, which is why this has taken longer than we'd hoped and expected.

3bnielsen
Nov 23, 2017, 8:18am Top

I think this thread is a bit quiet? (I'd really like the wiki edit back again, so that's why I'm watching for any activity here :-)

4gilroy
Nov 23, 2017, 8:46am Top

>3 bnielsen: It's a holiday week in the USA. I don't expect they got much done.

5rosalita
Nov 23, 2017, 8:55am Top

>3 bnielsen: Lorannen says in >2 lorannen: that she will post in the original thread about the wiki issues when the upgrade is complete, so I'd keep an eye over there rather than here.

And as Gilroy says, holiday week in U.S. may be slowing things a bit. A lot of people travel great distances for Thanksgiving.

6lilithcat
Nov 23, 2017, 11:08am Top

>5 rosalita:

And when they're not traveling, they're cooking, or hanging with family, or watching television, or (this is the worst!) shopping.

7rosalita
Nov 23, 2017, 11:40am Top

>6 lilithcat: Ugh, shopping! I try very hard to never enter a store (other than a grocery store) between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

8bnielsen
Nov 23, 2017, 7:20pm Top

>5 rosalita: I do keep an eye on the original thread. And that was quiet too. But yes, Thanksgiving is a good explanation. Black Friday has also been adopted here although almost nobody here knows why this friday should be special :-)

9krazy4katz
Nov 23, 2017, 7:38pm Top

Also don’t know why it should be called Black Friday. I always thought sales were red.

10lesmel
Nov 23, 2017, 9:07pm Top

>9 krazy4katz: Except you run in the black when you make a profit...

11krazy4katz
Edited: Nov 23, 2017, 11:51pm Top

>10 lesmel: Hmm… interesting.

12PhaedraB
Nov 23, 2017, 10:56pm Top

>10 lesmel: That's a folk etymology.

The original use of the term in America was for the Friday in 1869 when the bottom fell out of the gold market. It's been applied to many Fridays since then, for reasons of financial crises, massacres, hangings and other disasters. The original usage seems to be in England in 1745.

Calling the day after Thanksgiving Black Friday is pretty recent, and as far as I remember this usage does come from the retail side, but originally informally since if you work in retail it is the day from hell. (I used to work in retail.)

13MarthaJeanne
Nov 24, 2017, 2:48am Top

Here in Vienna, too, there are now lots of sales this weekend, and nobody knows why. Though I did hear one ad say they were not having a 'black' sale, but rather an 'orange' one. Orange is the new Black perhaps?

14rosalita
Edited: Nov 24, 2017, 10:23am Top

I heard a short report on the radio this morning about Germany also having Black Friday sales now, even though they don't celebrate Thanksgiving. It's quite odd, isn't it?

And I found this article that details the origin of the phrase in conjunction with this day, from police in Philadelphia who used it to refer to the increased traffic and overall chaos of the day. http://www.history.com/news/whats-the-real-history-of-black-friday

15MarthaJeanne
Edited: Nov 24, 2017, 11:16am Top

I think the international aspect has to do with increasing internet sales. As various large online retailers offer deals, local ones, and then local non-vitual shops follow in order not to lose business.

16rosalita
Nov 24, 2017, 11:44am Top

That makes a lot of sense, MarthaJeanne.

17lesmel
Nov 24, 2017, 4:24pm Top

>12 PhaedraB: Doesn’t make it in less true. If you talk money, you talk running in the black or the red. And yes, historically, “Black Friday” or “Black Tuesday” or “Black” Whatever-day is about the resulting “badness” of market collapse. And yes, growing up, Day After Thanksgiving Shopping was just that. It wasn’t ever Black Friday. And I have 40+ years of post-Tday shopping experience. Heh.

18PhaedraB
Nov 24, 2017, 8:00pm Top

>17 lesmel: Although it is true that with business you talk about being in the red or the black, having worked in retail most of my career including owning my own shop, I can assure you that Black Friday is not the day you go into the black. It is, however, the customary first day of the holiday shopping season, from which retailers might expect to accrue 40% of their yearly gross. A bad holiday season has sunk many a retailer, but if they were in the red up till then, they wouldn't have stayed open long enough to have a holiday season.

19LibraryCin
Nov 25, 2017, 5:56pm Top

>14 rosalita: We've had Black Friday sales in Canada for a few years now, but our Thanksgiving is in October, so it's not "connected" to Th'giving in any way here, either.

20rosalita
Nov 25, 2017, 7:55pm Top

>19 LibraryCin: I've always thought October was a much more sensible time of year to have Thanksgiving. Anything to distance it f I'm the shopping frenzy would be welcome in my book.

21LibraryCin
Nov 26, 2017, 1:12am Top

>20 rosalita: In Canada, Boxing Day used to be the big sale day... until Black Friday creeped up north, as well!

22pokarekareana
Nov 26, 2017, 11:44am Top

In the UK, Boxing Day was traditionally the big crazy sale day. Black Friday has definitely become a big thing here in the past five years or so. I'd understood that it came about after the financial crash in 2008 when retailers were hit with falling sales in the run-up to Christmas, so started cutting prices earlier and earlier, and eventually the sales got so early they now coincide with Black Friday.

23paradoxosalpha
Nov 27, 2017, 8:30am Top

Wasn't the original "Black Friday" the Friday before Easter, when liturgical vestments are traditionally changed to black? AKA "Good Friday"? That would be a funny day for bargains: Jesus is dead, 50% off all inventory!

24lesmel
Edited: Nov 27, 2017, 10:39am Top

History Channel to the rescue....
http://www.history.com/news/whats-the-real-history-of-black-friday

The true story behind Black Friday, however, is not as sunny as retailers might have you believe. Back in the 1950s, police in the city of Philadelphia used the term to describe the chaos that ensued on the day after Thanksgiving, when hordes of suburban shoppers and tourists flooded into the city in advance of the big Army-Navy football game held on that Saturday every year. Not only would Philly cops not be able to take the day off, but they would have to work extra-long shifts dealing with the additional crowds and traffic. Shoplifters would also take advantage of the bedlam in stores to make off with merchandise, adding to the law enforcement headache.

By 1961, “Black Friday” had caught on in Philadelphia, to the extent that the city’s merchants and boosters tried unsuccessfully to change it to “Big Friday” in order to remove the negative connotations. The term didn’t spread to the rest of the country until much later, however, and as recently as 1985 it wasn’t in common use nationwide. Sometime in the late 1980s, however, retailers found a way to reinvent Black Friday and turn it into something that reflected positively, rather than negatively, on them and their customers. The result was the “red to black” concept of the holiday mentioned earlier, and the notion that the day after Thanksgiving marked the occasion when America’s stores finally turned a profit. (In fact, stores traditionally see bigger sales on the Saturday before Christmas.)


No sources here to support any of this, which annoys me to no end. Business Insider repeats the Philadelphia origin, though. Wikipedia uses some sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Friday_(shopping)

https://www.visualthesaurus.com/cm/wordroutes/the-origins-of-black-friday/ has some sources.

http://listserv.linguistlist.org/pipermail/ads-l/2008-April/081311.html transcription of a journal ad from 1966.

And http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2010/11/black-friday/

Huh. Wonder if I can clip some ads from 1960 with newspapers.com...hmmmm

25lesmel
Nov 27, 2017, 11:07am Top

I find it fascinating that newspapers called Nov 22. 1963 "Black Friday" -- same as McKinley's day (Sep 6, 1901) of assassination. And STILL the shopping day after Thanksgiving became "Black Friday." There was a clear negative connotation to the crowds and mayhem on the day after Thanksgiving.

26PhaedraB
Nov 27, 2017, 12:33pm Top

I want to congratulate this thread for being a great example of topic drift!

I did a Google N-gram search for Black Friday references. It's not used in the context of shopping until practically the present. Of course, that's in books, not newspapers.

I do seem to remember the Philadelphia connection from long ago. It certainly wasn't called Black Friday when I was growing up. My dad told me Thanksgiving was the day when he and many others got their Xmas bonuses, so people who had the day after off of work went to do their holiday shopping. He said he and my mom would hit that new chain, Toys R Us, on the Friday. Most families had one car and my mom didn't drive anyway, so a shopping day when they were both free was a big deal.

It was also the day when the big department stores unveiled their holiday decorations and fancy holiday window displays. Sometimes we'd go to State Street in downtown Chicago and look at all the windows and then try to get seated in Marshall Field's Walnut Room so we could eat lunch by the tree. The Walnut room was at the bottom of the the multistory atrium at the center of the building, so the tree was massive. Marshall Field's got bought by Macy's, but the Walnut Room is still there; my Chicago cousins still try to get in a lunch there during the season.

27rosalita
Nov 27, 2017, 6:00pm Top

>24 lesmel: Thanks for the history.com link, Lesmel. I posted it up in >14 rosalita: but some folks may not want to scroll ALL the way back up there. :-)

28LibraryCin
Nov 27, 2017, 9:54pm Top

>23 paradoxosalpha: LOL! Ok, that made me laugh!

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