Open for Business

Open Easter Sunday, from 12:00 – 8:00.”

So read the sign at PetSmart yesterday when I took Molly in for her bath and haircut.

So read the sign at Bed Bath and Beyond this morning when I went stopped in to shop for a new doormat.

So read the sign at Home Depot when I drove by on my way to lunch at Panera Bread.

I’m certainly no authority on Christian doctrine or history, but I’m quite certain that Jesus would not have arisen from the tomb and felt the need to go shopping at PetSmart, Bed Bath and Beyond, or Home Depot.

To parpharse a once popular song -“What’s shopping got to do with it?”

 Whether or not  you observe Easter (or Passover) from a religious standpoint, these holidays give us the opportunity to spend time with family or friends, to step back from everyday concerns and focus on something more meaningful than the mundane tasks of life. When stores remain open on holidays, they force their employees to choose between family time and work, a choice they already must make far too often. Plus they encourage the rest of us to forsake time we might otherwise spend more fruitfully.
At the risk of sounding like a cranky old Grandma (wait – I am a cranky old Grandma!) I recall when retail stores were never open on Sunday, or even after 5:00 p.m. (except on Thursdays and Fridays). Would it really be so  bad if we couldn’t wander around the mall on Sunday afternoon? What would we miss if we weren’t able to buy cosmetics, or electrical equipment, or tennis shoes until Monday morning?
Instead of shopping and spending money most of us don’t have anyway, perhaps we could go to a concert or movie, play games with our kids, try out a new recipe. Take a nap. Take a walk. Read a book.
Naturally  from a business standpoint it’s all about making a profit. But from a human standpoint, I think we need to be about another business entirely.The business of living a meaningful, fulfilling life, one that enriches us, our family and friends, and the wider world around us.
I just don’t believe shopping has anything to do with that.
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9 thoughts on “Open for Business

  1. I could not agree with you more. 🙂 Easter does not have anything to do with the Easter bunny, candy, plastic eggs or chocolate. Our church is going to host 1500 children tomorrow and there will be 50000 plastic candy filled eggs. The Easter bunny will be on the premises as well. (cough). It is all about reaching out to the community. 🙂

  2. Becca, Glad to find this entry. First, you made me laugh about cranky grandma’s and saying “wait, I AM one…” but it’s wisdom that brings you to say these things, not crankiness.

    And then you made me think about something that’s been on my mind as I struggle to declutter one room at a time (it’s working!).
    Please could we have a day of respite, with no mowing services in the neighborhood at 8:30 a.m. on Sundays(??!!!), with no stores open making it possible for some family member to feel pressured to go get one more thing for the table (no, we’re fine with what we have), with the constant call to get/procure/add/increase…and overflow? We need to get ourselves a break from it all.
    Guess we have to just give ourselves the time out, ignore the stores, the constant jump and itch to go get the next thing we think we need.

    But really, Petco? I’ll bet there aren’t many pets jones-ing to get to the store on any Sunday, especially if it means grooming or nail clipping!!!!

    Hope you’re having a gorgeous Easter weekend!

    • That’s exactly how I feel – we need a chance to be relieved of the pressure of going and doing – that constant itch of dissatisfaction. Holidays should give us that, if nothing else.

      So I hope you enjoy a quiet, pressure free weekend. I’m planning to – no trips to the pet store on Easter! (Magic and Molly will be happy to hear that 🙂

  3. this is still the case in Belgium…it’s illegal to have stores open whenever. Only bakeries & supermarkets are open in the morning on holidays or sundays. Other stores can be open a maximum of 10 Sundays a year. Law tries to protect little stores, not part of a chain that would have difficulty to find personnel to open or to pay the Sunday overtime. Only in some touristic areas this is different (and mind you , it’s a small country, touristic areas are never very far away).

  4. I agree with you. I h ave occasionally shopped for groceries on a Sunday and it feels wrong. Retailers are trying to make Easter a ‘shopping event’ now. Does anyone really need a garland made of Easter eggs for their front door?

  5. I guess I just can’t get exercised about this. It doesn’t make a bit of difference to me how many stores will be open – the choice of whether to shop or not is mine.

    On the other hand, for people who work a completely erratic schedule, there are times when having the grocery store available on a Sunday is important. Friends who are working six – or even seven – day rotations need to be able to adjust their schedules, too.

    And let’s face it – there are people who choose to work on weekends simply to keep the cash flowing. If you shut everything down on Sundays, those people would be more concerned about losing that paycheck than playing with the kids.

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