I have a story to tell. It’s not just any old story though. This is the story of how Best Buy made our dreams a reality and then quickly punished us for being so damn excited. You could say the incident was a fluke. And sure, if it would have just been a simple little thing like a broke refrigerator we might have been able to look past it but instead it was a broken fridge, HOURS of phone calls, lots of run around, horrible customer service, several days with no updates and us left wondering how in the world Best Buy is still even managing to stay in business.
Sounds intense, doesn’t it? Ready for the story?
Once upon a time… Our family started eating healthy. Instead of having boxes of crackers, bags of chips and a few random bananas on the counter, we started really stocking up on produce; fruits and vegetables of all sorts. When we moved into our 900 sq. ft. house, our very first home together, we were just a year into our marriage and didn’t have a lot of dollars to our name. We settled on an 18 cu. ft. fridge that has held up nicely over the years and given us plenty of memories (like the time we took everything out of it, unplugged it and got ready to say, “adios” only to realize it’s never been cleaned in 6 years and have to repack it up with slightly cool, mostly room temperature, hopefully not spoiled food two hours later when our new fridge exited our house once again…) Over the course of the last several months, we have become increasingly frustrated with our [tiny] trusty old refrigerator as we have far more food than cold space. Princess Daddy begged for a replacement but didn’t seem to understand that when I said we didn’t have an extra four grand lying around that I was actually serious.
Fast forward to Labor Day weekend. I half-jokingly made a promise to my husband that if his company made bonus, that we would get a new fridge. Unbeknownst to me, he spent hours on end researching new options. He even saw many in person while in different stores for other reasons. He settled on an amazing 28 cu. ft. model from Samsung. It was basically the only fridge to meet his wants and my very picky combination of needs. Then much to our surprise, that bonus check came rolling it. It was as if the stars had aligned.
So off we went to Best Buy. We selected their store because of the combination in holiday sales, finance offers and rewards options they had available. Much to our disappointment though, the fridge we dreamed about had been discontinued. We desperately wanted it in black but all models had sold out and none would be made available again. The sales guy, polite but a tad pushy encouraged us to go with stainless steel. I wanted nothing to do with it. Princess Daddy, trying to make me happy and knowing his new fridge was slipping away quickly pulled out his phone and saw that The Home Depot not only had it in stock, they had it a few pennies cheaper. We’d be giving up the rewards but we were willing to do so to get what we wanted and not anything less.
Pushy Sales Guy was very adamant about getting his sale. He begged us to stay and ran off to find his manager. What seemed like an eternity later, he offered us a price cut on the newer (and bigger model). Still within our budget, we agreed and left feeling like we were on top of the world. It’s rare we buy really nice things in our marriage. We often settle on things below our means hoping to one day upgrade when we’ve paid our dues. And this time, finally, our dues were up and this fridge was IT.
Since it was special order, we waited a painstaking FOUR weeks to finally get our new fridge. We were delighted to find out we were the first delivery for the day and woke up at 6:45 a.m. to be ready just in case since we were given an estimate of 7-9 a.m. We moved around all our furniture to make sure the monstrosity fit into the house. And then the truck pulled up. We were so excited, we were practically jumping up and down.
That’s when Grumpy Gus walked into our house. He reeked of cigarette smoke and talked like he wanted nothing to do with his job. He never once even made eye contact with myself or our three girls (all watching intently from the sidelines eating breakfast). He spoke only to my husband. About 45 minutes later, the new fridge had been unpacked, doors taken off and hauled into the house. New Guy Partner was nowhere to be found. Princess Daddy, always a chatter box, tried to strike up a conversation with Grumpy Gus. This is how we found out that New Guy Partner was on his first day and they had a full truck of 18 deliveries. Grumpy Gus was complaining about his boss and how much this day would suck. They were already behind and it was only the first drop off. He quickly banged the doors back onto the fridge without much care for his grimy fingerprints or following the instructions that came with the appliance.
Princess Daddy noticed Grumpy Gus struggling with the final door and offered assistance since New Guy Partner was staring off into space, dumbfounded. We soon realized that in his haste and frustration, Grumpy Gus actually damaged the pin that allows the door to fit on correctly. Princess Daddy pointed out the damage but Grumpy Gus was determined to make the door work and continued to jam it down further. Finally, he slammed the door shut and looked proud. Proud of what, I’m not so sure because we surely are not stupid. Yes, the door shut but no way were we accepting it. The door had to be slammed, and forced to shut. The top shelf scrapped against the top of the fridge. Now I don’t know much about appliances but I have been using them since I was a wee little one and I know just how easy refrigerator doors close. Princess Daddy apologized and said no way were we taking this fridge. It was broken. Period. Grumpy Gus, clearly irritated left the house to phone his boss (we assumed). After 15 minutes or so he returned and summoned New Guy Partner to haul the fridge back out of the house.
He left with a simple, “Someone from the warehouse will be in contact with you to get a replacement out.” He did not provide us with any phone number, any time frame or any idea that said warehouse wasn’t even open on weekends! We called the generic customer service number after 8 hours of no word and were told that no notations had been made yet, our ticket still read that our fridge was out for delivery so we’d get a phone call once it was up to date. All day on day 2 goes by with still nothing, we call again. (Both times having to hold for a good 15 minutes.) This time they finally tell us the warehouse is closed on the weekends so we won’t hear anything until the next day (Monday). Monday rolls around (Day 3!) and still nothing. Princess Daddy calls and they locate our file, update it according to what we stated and was told “the store” would be calling us. Hours later? You guessed it… nothing! Princess Daddy then decided to call the local store himself. He’s told the appliance manager was in the middle of a situation already but would call us back. Three hours later, still no phone call. We call YET AGAIN only to be told the manager left and wouldn’t be back for another two days. Princess Daddy asked for another manager and was told the general manager was busy and that this really needed the appliance manager.
Completely fed up, Princess Daddy in one final attempt decided to call another store, one close to his work so that he could go in person the next day. He was nicely going to warn them. This is where he talked to Awesome Manager, the only Best Buy employee who seemed to have any clue what was going on. Funny enough, Awesome Manager was completely shocked that the first customer service person didn’t just reorder the fridge with store credit from the first like needed to be done. He said it didn’t require a manager at all and was much beneath his normal duties. He was appalled by how we’ve been treated and not only ordered our fridge but managed to get it scheduled for delivery just 48 hours later!
I wish I can say that our story ended there and the fridge is now happily settled in our kitchen but no, no that would almost be too easy. Princess Daddy got a phone this morning from a Best Buy employee I’m going to lovingly call Call Center Reject. This employee had the nerve to tell us that the fridge Awesome Manager ordered for us was not available for delivery, only a special in store pick up. Now let me make it clear, Awesome Manager ordered the EXACT same fridge that was already delivered to our home once. Shocked and very confused, Princess Daddy argued with Call Center Reject. He continued to tell Princess Daddy that there was nothing he could do that WE needed to go back to the store and order a different one. Period. Princess Daddy was livid. There seemed to be no getting through to Call Center Reject. The conversation ended when Call Center Reject HUNG UP on Princess Daddy, without warning, in the middle of speaking. Awesome. Just awesome.
Princess Daddy calls back (and forgive me, I’m not entirely sure who/what number he called this final time) and got to talk to Mom’s Rock. She explained that Awesome Manager did the right thing but that the computer failed us. When Awesome Manager returned the broken fridge for store credit, the system thought a fridge was immediately available hence giving us a 48 hour turn around. Mom’s Rock reassured us that this is a total fluke and that the new fridge is correctly ordered. Our estimate for delivery is now October 24th!
I’m not mad at Awesome Manager but I am just so upset that Best Buy just can’t get their crap together with communicating with us on what’s going on. They have offered us nothing but some unempathetic apologies and a spin of false promises. They don’t seem concerned by our frustration. They don’t seem to care that their employee couldn’t control himself on a bad day, especially since he had a four thousand dollar brand new refrigerator in his hands. And they don’t seem to care about our time or convenience whatsoever.
I know what you are thinking at this point, why don’t we just return it and go somewhere else. Trust me, we are considering that and researching that as an option. Unfortunately, we bought the fridge on a holiday weekend when appliances were heavily discounted. To go elsewhere now, we wouldn’t be able to get the fridge we want on our budget. And really, at this point, we just want it all to be over with.
Even with a delivery date in place from Mom’s Rock (who has given us Miss Manager’s name since we can’t follow up with her directly as she’s going out on maternity leave next week) Best Buy has left me leery and untrusting. When delivery rolls around I’ll be full of anxiety instead of excitement. And we will just be praying that the whole thing doesn’t spontaneously combust just from us looking at it. So yes, Best Buy ruined what we worked so hard for. The first nice thing we’ve gotten pretty much ever. And we tend to be pretty unforgiving…