It was one of the greatest rituals of American childhood: Thanksgiving morning American children would tune in to see Santa Claus traverse across the continent (you have to include Toronto in this). First he would parade in NYC at the Macy's parade, then at Gimble's parade in Philly...to Toronto, to Detroit...across America and it's television sets. Children always wonered: how the hell can Santa get from here to there so damn fast!
But the grandest was always NYC with it's Macy's parade on T-Day. They always seemed to have the grandest floats, the best bands from all across America, and those balloons...those wonderful balloons. And they were the start of Xmas...period, the retailers didn't try to cheat on one another and start it after Halloween like they do now.
And then NBC and the "Broadway Marketing Dept" (it doesn't matter precisely what this is)...but somehow they convinced themselves that all the children wanted to see Broadway dancers and semi-celebrities lip-synching bad songs all day in the cold, that somehow maybe all the adults (i.e. the ones who really do the spending) would somehow watch. Get a clue NBC: nope! We're just all waiting for the football games.
Sometimes America is really stoopid!
My son lives in NYC. He says the parade is just how I said...except if you go to see the parade, you see a parade. You DON'T see a bunch of dancers and bad lip-synching...that's all downtown at the end of the parade where NBC can stage it the way they want for marketing purposes.
But nationally...for Americans and their children...this parade is dead, an empty shell of what-once-was-great-about-America!