It’s not this time of year without Black Friday

It’s not this time of year without warm beanies, gloves, sweaters, and everything else that keeps you warm. I love staying warm as I come from a temperate climate, Mumbai to be specific. I’ve been learning the art of layering since I came to New Jersey, which has its share of coldness that spans to an equivalent of two winters in India.

It’s not this time of year without Black Friday, something I’ve known through social media in the past but I actually get to see its frenzy this time. With Black Friday comes immense shopping sprees with heightened sense of materialism, and a disappointment for those wearing the green hat. In between these two extremes, lies a fundamental need to depend on materials in its various forms. Which is the reason why even though I’m grateful for the environmental movement, I also look forward to a much inclusive and empathetic perspective of this movement. The perspective of Sustainability, which unfortunately exploited by some, seems like a key to fulfilling our materialistic needs without impacting our world – environment and fellow species.

While organizations promoting the Black Friday are abound, there is a force of those organizations such as the Hubbub Foundation that also comes into play.  Like the yin and yang, like the law of cause and effect, these organizations want to strike the right amount of balance to counter measure the ill effects of excessive consumerism. Among the several benefits that materials provide us for survival, the benefits that are intangible are the ones that are most overlooked. This video makes a case for how children’s relationships with soft toys is neither superficial nor unimportant to psychological development. 

Hubbub Foundation’s survey shows most people don’t even enjoy taking part in Black Fridays. Why then do we still see the opposite happen? Perhaps peer pressure, a cultural malfunction. If we are to handle our consumerism consciously, which is admittedly hard to come by without financial restraints, or for love for green hats, we would need to address our innate nature. Good luck with that. It’s much easier if companies help us, which is why I applaud companies like Patagonia who admit that this issue exists without further ignoring it.

Case study: Patagonia's 'Don't buy this jacket' campaign ...

I’m gonna go buy me some sweaters. It’s cold. Good for me that it’s cheaper this time of the year. I hope to find some good quality stuff that would last me for some more Black Fridays. For those looking to switch to new clothing or other items, please consider recycling or donating the old stuff.

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