Thanksgiving is the thoroughly American holiday, and consumerism is a thoroughly American practice. So it's no surprise the two collided and spawned that most frantic of all bargain shopping days - Black Friday. The high holiday of the deal seaking, it used to be that shoppers would get up extra early and line up outside department and big box stores at 6 o'clock, 5 o'clock, 4 o'clock a.m.! Now, with holiday earnings ever more important to the bottom line, stores are starting to open on Thanksgiving itself, or at midnight on Black Friday.

I have always been one to stay up late rather than wake up early, so I'm all for the midnight openings. Gap is getting headlines for staying open on Thanksgiving itself - this includes Old Navy and Banana Republic stores - while Target, Macy's, Kohl's and many outlet shopping centers are opening at 12 a.m. Friday. I'll be live tweeting all the madness for @catwalkqueen!

Keep reading for a preview of some of the deals you can expect to see this weekend, in stores and online. We'll be doing another roundup later in the week, too!

If you're going to be doing your shopping online and are more interested in browsing sales than going after a specific item, ShopItToMe (@shopittome on twitter) is a great free service that scours retailer Web sites for the brands, categories and sizes you are interested in and delivers the deals to your inbox. They'll be having special Black Friday and Cyber Monday editions. Get your account updated now!

If you're after some specific items online, bookmark them or add them to your wishlist, then check on the price at 12:01 a.m. Seriously, people are shopping - especially online - right at midnight and hot designer items at big discounts are going to be the first items to go.

If you haven't guessed, I think twitter is a great tool. Follow your favorite retailers to find out about their sales. Watch the #blackfriday hashtag for discounts and news like who's out of what and where it's a mad house.

Some retailers are starting to reveal previews of their Black Friday in-store deals, here's some links. (The good old newspaper is also a good source of coupons and listings on Thursday and Friday.)

Macy's Black Friday Specials Preview

Preview Target's 2-Day sale They're also having a pre-Black Friday sale right now, and you can add items from either sale to a "quick list" for easier shopping later.

Old Navy Gobblepalooza 3-D as in 3-Day sale There's also a coupon for $10 off of $50 and you can make a "gobble grab list."

At Kohl's preview 500 Early Bird Specials and create your shopping list.

H&M's Black Friday offers start at $5 for dresses and sweaters, and the first 100 people in stores at 5 a.m. get scratch off coupons worth up to $300.