I know I'm not the only one who was disgusted to hear that some of the shoppers groused about the store closing because of the death and kept shopping anyway.
I know I'm not the only one who tired of being told that I'm a Scrooge if I don't buy the best and newest for everyone I know.
Who sucked the joy out of giving?
I'm not "silver lining in every cloud" kind of person, but I do see an opportunity when it hits me upside the head with a two-by-four. This economic downturn is trying to tell us something: stop buying crap you don't need for people you don't like! Stop doing it, whether or not you have money in your pocket.
I don't mean that I think it's a good idea that people are losing jobs and homes. That we have to stop. Today. But I do mean that sometimes we need a reminder that shopping frenzies are not worth dying for. Or killing for. And we don't have to listen to the marketers every minute.
The typical response to this buying free-for-all is "make your own gifts!"
That's great advice for those of us who can. Not everyone wants to. Or is good at it. Oh sure, everyone can bake a plate of cookies, but that gets old too.
There is another answer. Buy local. Buy free trade. Buy from independent artists and crafters. Whether on-line halfway around the world or in your neighborhood, there are artists who have the perfect gift for someone special. Please support them.
Let's put the joy back in giving. Give something unique. Give something special. Give something made with a human touch.
We can fix this.