The Straits Times
Published on Nov 19, 2012

Now the Christmas grinch steals Thanksgiving


NEW YORK (AFP) - Thanksgiving, the last holiday in the United States undisturbed by mass commercialisation, is now victim to the ever advancing Christmas shopping season, with stores welcoming shopaholics before the family turkey can be taken from the oven.

Thanksgiving was long that rare day when stores closed and families gathered for long, uninterrupted meals. Unlike at Easter, Christmas or Hanukkah there was no merchandising - other than for the unfortunate birds.

That has been eroding yearly with the growing emphasis on Black Friday when stores begin sales that they count on for putting their books in the black.

To the consternation of some Americans, Black Friday, which will start on Thursday this year, will see Wal-Mart and Target, and Toys "R" Us opening their sales in the evening, right when people, including store clerks, might have been finishing their feast, or settling down to family TV.