Black Friday. The two words that cause palpitations in the hearts of bargain-hunters everywhere. They might as well call it National Cheapskate Day and be done with it. (No? Then you probably won't like my Rally to Restore Cheapness idea, either.)
As you probably know, in recent years Black Friday has evolved in weird and unexpected ways. First came Cyber Monday, online stores' answer to what was once a strictly brick-and-mortar affair.
Then came the Black Friday preview sites, which managed to snag "leaked" ads weeks in advance so shoppers could better plan their early-morning line-storming.
This year, I'm seeing an onslaught of "early Black Friday sales," some of which started the day after Halloween. What's next: Black November? (Answer: probably.)
My stance in recent years has been that Black Friday rarely produces deals better than what I typically find year-round. (Also, I prize sleep more than money, so there's no way I'm getting out of bed at 4 a.m. or standing in line in the cold just to save $20 on a Blu-ray player.)
That said, if you want to get a peek at this year's Black Friday action, look no further than blackfriday.info and bfads.net. Both sites have already rounded up the 2010 deals from most major stores, both retail and e-tail. Best item I've seen so far: a 2TB external hard drive (at Target, no less) for $69.99.
What's your take on Black Friday? Do you routinely brave the crowds, the cold, and the alarm clock? Or do you agree that the day has become a watered-down version of its former self?
Bonus deal: Amazon MP3 has some killer deals on killer albums today, including Green Day's "American Idiot" for $1.49, The Doors' "L.A. Woman" for $1.49, and, to get you in the holiday spirit, "The 99 Most Essential Christmas Masterpieces" for $1.99.
Bonus deal No. 2: Looking for some robust PC protection? Get a free six-month subscription to McAfee Internet Security, no strings attached. Thanks to reader Gouthaman for sharing this offer!
Bonus deal No. 3: Sure to sell out before I finish typing this sentence, the SMC Barricade 4-Port Wireless-N Router is on sale at sellout.woot for $12.99 (plus $5 for shipping).