No four-day weekends in my line of work, and I have lost a day from this flu already. So it's back to the grindstone, as the mercury falls after yesterday's respite, dodging the happy (or at least dazed) holiday shoppers, not one in a hundred of whom could tell you about the first Black Friday--
--Which fell on 24 September 1869, when an attempt to corner the gold market fell through and took down the NYSE with it. Wall Street types have been naming days when the markets crash "Black [dayname]" ever since. Kinda vacuums some of the fun out, dunnit?
(Meanwhile, the yammering ijit box drones on in my room, relentlessly hype-hype-hype. 'Cos the holidays just have to work a miracle for retailers, they just have to: the TV only plays if there's ads to run and broke stores don't run ads; so you better get out there with a mic, a camera and a winning smile and make it work. Not that the relationship is ever so clearly delineated -- but there's an advertising desert in January and even February [relieved only a little bit by Valentines and Presidents Days, and why is it that George and Abe instead of Cupid are selling mattresses and bedding when the other way around makes more sense?] to get through and just the one chance.)
CARBON MICROPHONE CHECKING
4 weeks ago