When I was younger and had less money I was forced to shop at any place I could get a deal. I never really have shopped at Big Lots before, there was one near my house and I needed a bed frame. So out of convenience I went there. Go in, buy a frame, go home, assemble frame, place bed on frame, and sleep….. Overall it was supposed to be a really simple procedure.
Oh but it wasn’t that simple, not at all.
First of all every Big Lots looks like a shopping center in Iraq; shit thrown all over the place, homeless people, and a ton of crap that nobody wants to buy… but they have great deals on rugs. When I bought the frame I noticed that the box was open, however the furniture department guy was loading it into my car so I didn’t feel like arguing. I know odd shaped boxes like that get ripped open all the time, so I wasn’t going to freak out. Of course when I got home I was missing two parts to the middle of the frame, since it was like 10pm at night I would have to wait the next day to get this missing piece.
(Side note: When I was walking into the store I saw this guy wearing a “Unix is cool” t-shirt, I just wanted to grab him, shake him, and scream, “NO IT’S NOT!!!!!!!” But somehow I don’t think it would have been appropriate.)
I went back this morning with the instructions and the receipt to get my missing part. Now logically you would figure that they would just open another box, take out the part I was missing, and then contact the manufacturer to get a replacement part or return that set to the warehouse. When I worked in retail that is basically how we would have handled things. But when you enter the world of Big Lots logic and common sense go out the window.
You know how when you go to the doctor they use the pain chart to determine the level of pain you are in? In order for you to relate to the disgust I was feeling I am going to use pictures of Rosie O’Donnell to explain my levels of disgust.
Solution 1: You don’t need that part.
After talking to the store manager and the furniture department manager they believed I was legit and headed into the warehouse to get the parts that I needed. A few minutes later they returned with a box and opened it, the frame in the box didn’t have the parts I needed. I was told that, “You don’t need those parts, I think the instructions are wrong.”
I bit my lip for ten seconds and counted for another ten, then calmly pointed out that they brought out a frame for a twin size bed. Because it was a twin size bed there was no need for a middle support like the ones Queen and King sized beds need. Back into the warehouse they went.
My level of disgust on the Rosie O’Donnell Scale: Slightly Elevated
Solution 2: They don’t make that frame anymore
They returned with another box and opened it to reveal no middle support. I was informed that I probably purchased the last version of that frame. The thing was the frame that they had in this box was a special frame that screwed onto the bottom of the box spring, nothing like the one I had. The frame I bought is the type that is on like 90% of all beds in the United States, again I bit my lip and pointed that out. To the warehouse yet again…
My level of disgust on the Rosie O’Donnell Scale: Raised
Solution 3: Why don’t you contact the manufacturer and have the send you the part
I figured the third time is a charm, I am either a total idiot or I have way too much faith in other people. This time when they emerged from the back they came empty handed, the store manager suggested that I contact the manager and have them ship me the missing part.
My level of disgust on the Rosie O’Donnel scale: THE HIGHEST
I countered with, “How about I go home and package up the frame, come back and…”
There were options for me here:
a) jam it straight up your ass
b) lob it through your front window
c) wait for you to get the parts in
d) return it and urinate on your leg
I actually went with option “e” which was: return it and call the district manager.
Now I hate when people play the district manager card, in fact when I worked retail it was my least favorite thing because it was such a blow hard move. The customer never knows how to contact the regional manager; they never would take the time. I had officially become what I hated. I blame the lighting….
The bluff worked though and they said they wanted to make sure I left happy. They went into the warehouse and returned five minutes later with the pieces I needed.
As I drove home I thought to myself why was that so hard? Did they have a special collection of bed frame parts that they were so afraid to get rid of? Maybe the guy in the furniture department was like Bubbles from “the Wire” and sold the metal for money to buy crack. Then I just settled on the fact that the entire world is against me.
Will you join me in my newfound hatred of Big Lots?