Well, it finally happened.  My laptop died. I had been having problems with it for months so I suppose I shouldn’t be too surprised.  And unfortunately, I had to go out and get another laptop despite the fact that we’re on FALL FINANCIAL LOCKDOWN.  Although I do have a second computer, it’s  a desktop.  I do a lot of work on the run and often take my laptop with me when we travel.  As a freelance writer and blogger, a laptop is definitely a need, and not a want.  It’s how I make my living.

The closest store that sells electronics is Best Buy, and the other alternative is Walmart.  After struggling internally to decide which store was the least evil, I chose to go to Best Buy because they *might* have someone available to help me.  After some looking and comparing, I chose a Asus Laptop that was about $379.  Unfortunately, I also had to buy Microsoft Office which added another $120.  But, since I was able to write this off as a business expense, I wasn’t too upset.  I just needed a laptop so that I could move on with my life and continue making a living.

The Computer that Never Worked

We got the laptop home and started installing the software only to realize that the keyboard was acting crazy.  The SPACE key didn’t work well and I had to hit it really hard in order to make it work.  I screwed around with it a little, thinking that it might just be hard to work since it was new.  However, it didn’t take too long for me to figure out that it wasn’t going to work.  In addition to the space bar getting stuck, the mouse was acting erratic as well.  It was only Day#1 and I was already having problems.  So, I decided to take it back.

I drove up to Best Buy yesterday morning and was ready when they opened the doors at 10:00.  I politely told the customer service agent what was going on and she asked me to wait while she took the computer to the back.  Fine.  I waited for what seemed like forever until the lady returned with a computer tech by her side.

The tech, who was twice my size with giant man-hands, sat the laptop on the counter and typed out a paragraph.  It did miss a few spaces but he insisted that I was simply doing it wrong.  “You just have to hit the space bar really hard between each word,” he said.  “Nothing is wrong with it.”

Except that there was something wrong with it.  It didn’t work…for me, a petite gal with tiny hands.

“It doesn’t matter if it works for your hands.  It needs to work for mine.  It doesn’t.”

The tech asked me to type out a paragraph to demonstrate.  Was this really necessary?  But, whatever.  I just wanted to move on.  So, I typed out a paragraph that went something like this.

This laptopdoesn’t work and youhave a 15 day returnpolicy.  I readit on the backof thereceipt.  Giveme my moneyback so that we canallmove on withour lives.

He continued to look at the laptop and type on it some more.  Then, he suggested that I bring it home and see if it “loosens up.”


After another twenty minutes, they finally agreed to let me *exchange* it for another laptop, which was fine because I needed one anyway.  And even then, they acted like I didn’t know how a laptop should work or was trying to rip them off or something.  Best Buy sucks.

It’s Happened Before

A few years ago, we bought a dual DVD player for the kids to watch in the back seat of the car.  I think it was about $200, and I didn’t open it for about a week after we bought it.  Once I finally opened it, I realized that one of the screens was cracked in half.  We never watched it, plugged it in, or even turned it on.  We just put it back in the box and drove it back to the store.

When we tried to return it, the store said that they didn’t accept “used” returns.

“We didn’t use it.  We bought it this way,” I told the manager.  But, he wasn’t having it.

“Sorry, but there’s nothing I can do.”

So, we argued and argued.  They had $200 of my hard-earned cash and I wasn’t leaving until I had a replacement DVD player or my money back.  You could even tell from the packaging that we hadn’t used it because all of the cords were still sealed in the plastic they came in.  Finally, I went into SUPER BITCH MODE and told them that I was going to make the biggest scene they’ve ever witnessed.  Greg cowered in the corner as I prepared to unleash my fury.  They had a 30 day return policy at that time and I was trying to return the DVD player after the 6th day! In my eyes, they were stealing from me by refusing to accept a return that was obviously damaged when I bought it.  Once I turned my bitch switch on, they finally agreed to let me exchange the DVD players for a new set.  I think they were just tired of dealing with me…and I don’t blame them!

Still, I wonder how many people have had a bad experience when trying to return something to Best Buy.  Out of the two times I’ve returned something, I’ve had a horrific experience.  Best Buy sucks.

Have you ever had a bad experience shopping or returning an item at Best Buy?  If not, what store do you think is the biggest pain in the ass?