Christmas Shopping Has Begun!

Yeah I know we’re only a few days into February, but I’m glad to say that I’m already ahead of the game.

You see, this weekend we bought a few more Christmas gifts for this year. (In case you’re wondering, it’s only 342 days away!) Sure, go ahead and call me crazy but my plan is really quite simple: when cool stuff is on clearance for really cheap, you buy it.

One of said items was so cool and inexpensive that not only did we buy two for gifts, I bought two for ourselves. I can’t say what they are since, well, the intended recipients may be reading but trust me, they’d never guess how little we spent.

Our other reason for doing this? Things are a little unpredictable right now in terms of the economy and the job. Hell, who knows if I’ll even be working at the same place at the end of the year so we’re starting to stow stuff away now for the holidays. At least we’ll have something to give people despite what lies beyond the horizon.

We are going to try and buy a few items each month in the hopes that by September, we wil be completely done with everything. That would be very nice because we won’t have to fight the throngs of people at the stores which, to be quite honest, we never have a problem with anyhow since we usually finish before Thanksgiving.

Speaking of shopping, I went to Best Buy today to take advantage of a few things.

First, they had a spindle of 50 DVD+Rs on sale for $14.99 and although I had already bought one this weekend, I’m currently on a backing-up trip so I figured that having more wouldn’t hurt. They were also giving away a free 64-disc CD holder with the purchase of said spindle. Discs and storage for $14.99–good deal.

But it gets better! I had a $10 Reward Zone certificate that was just burning a hole in my pocket so the cost for the two items would only be $4.99. Now that’s a deal.

Then again, I was at Best Buy.

I walked into the store and grabbed the DVD spindle–check. Then I went over to the CD storage to check for the case–BZZZT! I didn’t even see a shelf label for the thing. I then asked one of the Blue-Shirted Monkeys if there was another place I could find them. He then punched the SKU into the computer, which told him there were 3 of these cases in stock–but as for where, he didn’t know. 

Dude says he would check the stockroom for the items so he disappears for a few minutes which then turned into 10 minutes. I texted Ann, told her the situation and that I’m still waiting. Her response:

tell that loser 2 hurry. ur son is hungry.

Fifteen minutes later I still don’t have my CD case. While I waited, many employees approached me and asked if I needed help. I said I didn’t but the guy helping me may have gotten lost. Finally, dude comes back and–not surprisingly–his hands are empty. He tells me he could check somewhere else for them but because it was getting late and I was supposed to pick up dinner on the way home, I couldn’t hang around.

“Thanks for checking but…I’ve got a hungry kid at home and I can’t wait anymore.” I left the DVDs on a shelf and grumbled on my way out, knowing I had just wasted too much of my time.

I got about halfway to the car when I decided fuck, I’m here. I might as well buy the DVDs for $4.99 and ask for a raincheck for the case. I walked back, grabbed another spindle and headed for the checkout lanes.

Before the cashier rang me up, I politely asked her the following:

“Now before you do that, there is a special offer for a free CD case  with the purchase of these DVDs. Problem is I already waited 15 minutes for someone to find them and they couldn’t. Can I just get a raincheck for the CD holder and come back later?”

“Um, no…” was her reply. Now I was livid.

“Okay then, just forget it. I don’t want them. I already wasted enough time here and got absolutely nowhere.” Her face was blank. I walked out grumbling even louder than before and chances are I looked like “that guy” that every person that ever worked retail–including myself–knows about. And perhaps if I had the time to argue or state my case with the manager, I would have gladly done it but by this point even I was getting hungry.

Well, I’m sorry. If you’re adversiting something that’s free with purchase, make sure there’s plenty in stock. And if I can’t get a raincheck on the goddamned thing, that should be stipulated in the ad so you don’t piss your customers off. (I just checked the ad. It only says “Must be purchased on same receipt” but nothing about not issuing rainchecks.)

So I still have $10 of free money to spend there. Problem is after this, I’m not sure if I want to.

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