Nothing Says 'Happy Thanksgiving!' like a Walmart Brawl

Brian Spain was looking forward to taking advantage of some Black Friday deals while visiting his parents in his hometown of Elkin, North Carolina for Thanksgiving. On Thursday morning, the New York-based writer/actor/comedian vlogged about camping out in the local Dollar Tree parking lot to be first in line.

Spain was joking in that first video, but a second one he posted a few hours later, after the Thanksgiving "festivities" commenced at a local Walmart, shows just how serious folks take their doorbuster deals. The 49 second clip is more like Discovery Channel footage of animals fighting in the wild than the light-hearted vlogs Spain usually shares on YouTube.

More »

Black Friday Is the Worst: Big Box Stores Get Ready to Open Thanksgiving Night

Video still via HoodratchednessTV
The crowd at Macy's Herald Square during Black Friday 2012
It's not particularly surprising or original any more to talk about how terrible Black Friday is; it's materialistic, dysfunctional, and every year someone dies or is gruesomely injured; you can pretty much count on a video of a horrible stampede somewhere by about 9 a.m. Not even the Wall Street Journal can summon any enthusiasm for it, pointing out that the "discounts" most chain retailers offer aren't real: Many of them reverse-engineer their Black Friday prices, setting higher original costs so that the "sale" price still nets them the profit margin they wanted.

And yet at many stores, Black Friday begins on Thanksgiving now, meaning that right this minute, while some of us are nodding off into our gravy-stained hoodies, other people are already punching in, or haven't gotten to spend the day with their families at all. And the National Retail Federation wants us to know that's awesome.

More »

'Madea Goes to the White House'

Black Folks, Fried Chicken, Mary J. Blige, and Voice Alum ChloƩ Hilliard [VIDEO]

Black folks have been in the news a lot recently and, despite the fact that an African American is in the White House (and according to recent polls stands likely to stay there for the next five years), a lot of that news has been extremely depressing in the past month. From "Stand Your Ground" to why John Derbyshire might be considered racist, Americans have had a cantankerous time discussing race (and especially black culture) in the past few weeks.

On a much lighter note, Mary J. Blige has hilariously brought the age old question of how much black folks can talk (sing?) about eating fried chicken in public out of the closet and into the bright, fluorescent lights of a Burger King .

More »

Ruben Diaz Sr. Calls Black Friday a 'Blessing'

Diaz thumbnail.png
C.S. Muncy
Diaz at an anti-gay marriage rally this past summer.
Now that state Sen. Ruben Diaz Sr. has officially lost the fight against gay marriage in New York, he's on to the next thing: Walmart. Diaz released a statement regarding Walmart's absence in NYC in light of this past weekend's strong Black Friday sales. In short: sucks about the pepper spraying and violence; congrats to Walmart for the great profits; now let's get a Walmart in the city ASAP. Diaz's statement in full, emphasis ours:

More »

Patagonia's Cyber Monday Reverse Psychology

patagonia jacket cyber monday.jpg
Patagonia, the one that makes fleeces and outdoor performance-type clothes, is employing a different tactic from every other retailer on this Cyber Monday. They're trying to get you not to buy their clothes. Reverse psychology or do they actually mean it?

Their statement/manifesto reads in part:

More »

Black Friday Deadly, Insanely Profitable

black friday denver.png
A Black Friday arrest in Denver.
Black Friday was crazier than ever this year, claiming at least one life and causing 20 people to be felled by pepper spray in a Los Angeles Walmart. Not to mention the great $2 waffle-maker riot of 2011. Our entire country engaged in pitched battle in Walmarts across the land.

Despite -- or because of -- this lunacy, this Black Friday was the most profitable one ever. Sales increased 6.6 percent over last year's to a $11.4 billion.

More »

Black Friday Shopper Uses Butt Crack Instead of Pepper Spray To Secure $2 Waffle Makers

Is that a tramp stamp too?

By now, you have certainly heard about the lovely Los Angeles woman who pepper-sprayed her fellow shoppers on Black Friday, over discounted Xboxes. Or the hot deals on cheap yoga pants that inspired a punching match at Victoria's Secret in Pennsylvania. Or the Arizona grandfather who was bodyslammed and bloodied, after his grandson got trampled. Or maybe you just heard about all the rest of the father-tasering, food-court gunplay, and consumer nonsense that took place on November 25! But did you hear the one about the Wal-Mart waffle mini-riot?

More »

The Craziest Black Friday Moments of All Time

Avoid this at all costs
Everyone knows the Friday after Thanksgiving is the "best time" to buy gifts for the holidays (can't beat a $3 toaster!) but it seems that people just keep upping the crazy ante in such a way that makes us want to stay the hell away. Like the two women in Florida who started camping outside a Best Buy -- 9 days early. Stop the insanity! Here's a look at some of our nation's blackest days in Black Friday history.

More »