Thursday, January 17, 2008

Hardware Store Week. Day 3

Good Lord it got cold here last nite, and supposed to be even colder the next 2 days... but then you didn't come here to read 'bout the weather huh.

Day 3 of Hardware Store week. Days 1 and 2 are here and here.

Now, onto this installment.

Several years ago I went into the Columbia, Missouri Home Depot store to pickup a whole house attic fan, a bunch of lumber and... to return a large spool of coax cable, that I didn't use any of. At the time you just left whatever you were returning at the checkout when you came in and they took care of your returns when you checked out. Now they've got the separate return counter. Anyway, I'm returning the coax and they do the credit and ring up my other stuff and I look at the receipt and they'd credited me $60 too much on the coax wire. I pointed this out to em and the clerk sent a handy pimple faced mouth breather in an orange vest, to go look to see if I was lying to em about it. (geesh)

Said mouth breather comes back and says, "No that's right." I said "No, you're wrong, go look again" The guy takes off, this time with his obvious, but slightly slower, twin brother. They come back in about 5 minutes with (insert a long "Uhhhh" before anything else is said) "We think something may be wrong with the bar code on the spool." To which I reply "you think?". So the clerk calls the manager over and now 4 people are trying to decide if I'm lying to em about them trying to give me too much money back, or if I've got brain damage, OR if in fact... something is screwed up with the bar code.

The manager, in a daring and breath taking move, makes a break for it from his own brain and declares "I think he's right, it should be $XXX.XX instead of $XXX.XX, we need to ring it up again.

Well hallelujah.

Okay... so everyone leaves now except me and the original clerk, whom I have discussed most everything on earth with in the past 20-25 minutes and just don't have anything more that I wanna discuss with em. But then, because the big orange box that he works for has trained him to ask, no matter what... he asks me, "Is there anything else I can do for you today?"

I said "Yeah, there is. How 'bout throwing me in a Home Depot cap?"

You'd have thought I asked for a date with his mom, his sister AND his grandma, from the look of utter disbelief that fell on his face.

He said "Those are only for Home Depot employees sir, they arent for sale" I said... "I didnt say I wanted to buy one, I thought you might just throw one in today." He said "No." My happy, pleasant, non-chalant, carefree, ever so patient and honest face.... fell.

I stood there for a bit, just letting it all soak into Lester punkinhead across the counter from me and then said, "You mean to tell me, I come in here to this store and spend close to $1000 dollars today, I THEN save you $60 bucks by pointing out your clerical error only to be ridiculed and made to feel like an idiot because of it, THEN I stand here for most of my life while you all hold court and decide that maybe I AM right.... and after all that you won't give me a $3 dollar ugly orange hat with this company's logo on it that i am willing to proudly wear and advertise for free for y'all? Is that what I'm understanding here?

The poor guy just stood there, probably wanting to just go home and have a couple of drinks and forget all about "coax wire guy", and finally he said very softly... "Yes sir, that's correct."

I told him he was doing a fine job for the company, took my stuff and left and never entered another Home Depot for about 3 years.



Jerry said...

Your constitution is tougher than mine, Jace. I probably only would have made it two years......

Great story! :)

Kim said...

It's my considered opinion that Sal ought to sew you up a nice orange Home Depot cap to wear proudly--except it should say "Home Despot" on it. But don't wear it into Home Depot. No sir-ee! When you go into Home Depot, you need to wear a Lowe's cap, of course!