Ready, set ... Best Buy started Black Friday 2009 prep in August

Think your ever-prepared colleague who's already bought and wrapped all her gifts has an impressive jump on the holidays? Consider this: electronics mega-chain Best Buy started prepping for Black Friday, the official, chaotic start to the holiday shopping season, in August.

That's when the company sends out a Black Friday "Toolkit" to each of its stores, summarizing the company's ticketing and security procedures, according to company spokesperson Scott Morris. The Toolkit is followed by several autumn "rehearsals," which simulate the day's events, he said.

And now, with the big day just weeks away, the company is tanned, rested and ready, and looking forward to what it hopes is a bright spot in a dark retail year