Costco, the warehouse-style retailer, is where the Carneys do most of our shopping. (We tend to buy in bulk.) If you visit Costco today, the Saturday after Thanksgiving, you will see Christmas decorations and heavily promoted gift sales.

It's similar if you visit Costco.com. The theme is obvious:

"Black Friday Deals," "Black Friday Savings," "Holiday Savings on Appliances." Costco publishes a "Holiday Savings Book," a book of coupons, that has a red Christmas ornament as the cover art.

Of course, if you search the Holiday Savings Book or the home page of Costco.com, there's a word you won't see: "Christmas."

As a Christian, I'm grateful.

As Black Friday begins on Wednesday at some stores, and spills over into Saturday, and probably Sunday and maybe Monday, it has become its own mini-season. It's the season in which you buy "Holiday Gifts."

I don't very into this season, because I think it's overly materialistic and consumerist, but to each his own.

That is, if you're upset Christmas is becoming too much about presents and too little about Baby Jesus, you should be happy that this materialistic secular celebration no longer seems to share a name with the religious holiday celebrating the birth of our Savior.

So, to all who celebrate it: Happy Black Friday.