Adventures in buying a microwave light bulb

Lowe’s tried to lure me into their store with a free $10 gift card, it worked. My microwave light burst during seven power surges in the neighborhood last week and those suckers cost $8 so I set forth on my adventure.

I asked someone (mistake) there if there was an LED equivalent so that the light would outlive the microwave. The clerk gave me one even though I asked him about it saying “appliance”. Cut to the chase, it didn’t work, but that’s not the fun part of the adventure.

When I went to check out, the cashier had no idea how to use the gift card. It wouldn’t scan and when she tried manual entry the field didn’t allow for all the numbers on the card. Programming tip: nvarchar(max) on all the fields forever! Not really. So I paid full price and went to the customer service desk.

They refunded the bulb after about 5 minutes of fighting with the gift card but then the computer froze locking them out of the system. So we had to move to another cash register. Once it went through the light bulb had now been returned twice for the same transaction. That comes into play when I return to Lowes later when I try to return the bulb that doesn’t work. So I get store credit. So I spent about 20 minutes of time and about 3 gallons of gas to purchase a light bulb. The $10 gift card was pointless. Next time, I’ll just use Amazon.

Adventures in buying a garbage disposal

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As I was cleaning the cat’s water dish I opened the cabinet below the sink to get the scrub brushes. To my delight, I noticed the InSinkErator dripping water from the bottom. After a bit of research and leak detection, it was determined that I needed a replacement. After all, it had a good run of 8 years.

I went to Lowes and picked up an exact replacement of the Badger 5. I took it home and got it installed and went to plug it in. Turns out, there’s no plug. I bought the wrong model. So I went online and found the one with the plug and ordered the last one in all the five Lowes stores in the area.  I went to pick it up and they couldn’t find it because it was a non-stocked item. So I canceled the order. A plumbing person offered to show me other models that may work. On the way back to the leftover grinders, I happened to notice halfway down the misplaced disposal. Once again I had to play stockboy and find the missing item. Brought back way too many memories of my days in retail when co-workers would just put things anywhere. Anyway, back to grinding up egg shells.

Small Business Saturday, Shop Local!

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I think it’s a neat idea to shop local, but not for long. I think that all customer service reps, or anyone that is responsible for answering phones, need to take acting classes. If you are having a bad day and use a sarcastic tone or interrupt the person calling then your superiors need to know about how you are ruining their business. Local shops won’t last much longer, you can’t compete with robots that take your orders and ship things to your door in 2 days.

Black Friday’s Matter

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I really have given up on shopping on Black Friday. The deals don’t seem as good as they were 30 years ago. Everything is so expensive and the deals are for cheaply made products that aren’t worth fist fighting over. My Black Friday matters to me. I know if I go out and buy a new gadget, I will spend the entire day putting it together. Not that it’s a difficult task, but because I know that something will go wrong or I will be missing one step in the instructions and will have to start from the beginning. I also don’t want to fight traffic and constantly bump into people all day long. I can expend an entire days worth of extrovert energy with one trip to Best Buy on Black Friday. I could just stay home and feast on Thanksgiving leftovers all day, or I could get some exercise by increasing my heart rate by igniting all the anxiety triggers in my brain. American Life is tough.

Do you still shop at Walmart?

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They have some great prices, but good grief it’s not worth it about 99.99% of the time. Once you pick a buggy you can’t tell it’s got a busted wheel until you roll it over two levels of cobblestone entrance tile and hit a smooth surface. By then, they are banking on the fact that you won’t care enough to exchange it. Thus, never servicing their buggies.

They always have someone begging at the entrance. If you don’t give them any money they give a condescending look and tell you to have happy holidays but they are condemning you to hellfire and damnation. The salvation army is usually out the day after Halloween out and one lady was apparently using the kettle as an ashtray. I don’t know if she was smoking a cigarette or a bong but the smoke was billowing into the solarium of vending machines.

Amazon.com is your new rude roommate

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We invited Amazon Echo and Alexa into our homes a few years ago. But now, Amazon wants to have a key to our home? Don’t get me wrong, we enjoy the novelty of Alexa, but out of nowhere we get a weather update or notice that she’s having trouble finding something. Amazon wants to listen in and interrupt when they see fit. They also want to barge in and drop your delivery of toilet paper inside your door so that thieves won’t get it. If you going to deliver toilet paper, just bring it all the way to the bathroom.

I can see why, but don’t think it’s necessary for Amazon to have a lock and key entry into my home. Of course, I also didn’t think I needed 2-day shipping for a yearly fee. I also didn’t need a robot listening to my television and record “breaking bad” dialog into my NSA file, but here we are. I’m letting it happen. Before long Amazon will just ship stuff to my house in anticipation of my needs. Yeah, serious about the bathroom toilet paper deliver. Maybe by drone?

How to yard sale

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  • Bring large bills and pay for .50 cent items. Get a possible freebie because no one can change a $100
  • Ask for small bills as change to wipe out their supply for other shoppers
  • Automatically cut 50 to 75% off their asking price
  • Look into the garage and ask about pricing for things that are not labeled or obviously for sale. Bikes, pets, water heaters, etc
  • Gain access to the house, come out one of the doors asking how much for the tub
  • Try to purchase one of their vehicles.
  • Request items like “needle nose pliers”, if they don’t have any for sale ask. “Well, why not?”
  • Bring a few shovels and start uprooting their sod. It is after all a “yard sale”