It’s that time of year again. Time to save big by spending big. Time to buy piles of stuff to show how much you care for your loved ones. After rolling out of bed having stuffed yourself all Thursday, you can stand in lines awaiting the latest gadgets. Or maybe you’re not a people person and prefer instead the privacy and convenience of online shopping. Either way, it’s time to consume.
We at M&T would like to remind you that you could choose to gift something else. You could finally try your hand at spoon carving this year. Or make a stack of live-edge cutting boards for your in-laws. Shrink pots also make great gifts.
This is the fourth year that Mortise & Tenon will be closing our digital “doors” on Black Friday in renunciation of the cultural pressure to consume as much as possible. No, there’s nothing wrong with exchange of goods and services. And no, money will not rot your soul. But sometimes when good things become ultimate things, it’s refreshing to step away. To opt out. To choose something else.
This Friday, we at Mortise & Tenon will be celebrating what we call “Black-out Friday,” in which we shut down our store and turn off our digital devices for 24 hours. Our custom is to use the day instead for making Christmas gifts in our woodshops. It’s a welcome silence from the hubbub of the world, and a good day to reflect on the things we ought to be more thankful for. And after a day of hearty feasting, I find it enriching to give back to others.
So, this message is partly a heads-up that this Friday there will be no blog post published, no M&T store to shop at, and no customer service available (nor will we be responsive on Thursday, for that matter). But we also want to use this opportunity to invite you to opt out with us. Get thinking about what you’d like to make for your spouse this year. Are your kids finally ready to have their own chest of hand tools? We invite you to black-out your Friday with us. There’s a lot of good work to do.
Let’s make shavings.