Supermarkets have been designed for a high turnover of a huge inventory, with as little help as possible from employees. They accomplish this by employing tricks to get you to buy more food than you planned to. And that affects not just your wallet, but also your waistline, because supermarkets are often pushing less healthy, processed foods.
Among the rarest images are African Americans in uniform, sailors, a Lincoln campaign button, and portraits of soldiers with their wives and children. A few personal stories survived in notes pinned to the photo cases, but most of the people and photographers are unidentified.
For the past few years, Buy Nothing Day has served as a quiet rejoinder to a day (and a season) marred by the worst of consumer culture. Even if Black Friday isn't the year's biggest shopping day, it is a nice occasion for staging a widespread effort of non-participation. But what happens afterward? Might there be a better way to transform our shopping habits?
Indeed there might. Back on November 11, a group of unlikely anti-consumers launched the Free Fashion Challenge, in which 15 self-described "fashion addicts" pledged to refrain from buying clothes for an entire year. For the next 12 months, participants will blog about their experiences, hold swap parties, and engage in all sorts of "assignments" online.