Best Buy Pissed Me Off

Shocking that a retail establishment can spark a Rant, right? Hah, yeah, sure. This past weekend I popped into Best Buy to pick up a second Xbox controller and some banana plugs for some audio speaker wire. The game controller was on sale for $25, which is a good price, and since I have “official” speaker jack outlets in my new place, I needed the plugs. I was pretty much left to myself while shopping – which is good! – but the check out process was rather …irksome, to say the least.

First question I got from my checkout guy was “Do you have a rewards card?” I don’t. Nor do I really want one. I tell Staples and Barnes and Noble the same thing. After all, I’ve worked hard to keep my new phone numbers off telemarketers’ lists, and I will do whatever I can to keep it off them. Besides that, places like Best Buy are used for impulse buys – not planned shopping… if I’m taking the time to plan or research a purchase, that means I’ll be looking online and odds are I’ll be ordering it from an online store. I’ve given my info to Fred Meyer and QFC, but I shop both of them regularly and they have real discounts on everyday items and on each visit. Feh.

So, no, I don’t have a Rewards Card with you, Best Buy, but you shouldn’t take it personally. The “no I don’t” gets followed up some polite banter, or so I thought at the time: “Ah, did one of your controllers finally give out you?” Were I amused by this I might have made some whity retort about how my girlfriend was using the rumble feedback as a vibrator and I smashed it so there’d be less competition in the house, or something whimsical. Instead I just gave back a “Nah, I just wanted to finally get a second controller and these were on sale.”

Obviously this was a subliminal expression of weakness, because that lead to a discussion about the available extended two year warrantee for just $9…. Riiiiiight. The $25 control requires insurance for two years. Again, I offered a exasperated “no thanks!”.

While all of this was going on, I was eying a copy of some random magazine that had big-hair-man Johnny Damon on the cover, which caused all sorts of irking reactions from me… it has been a really, really long off season. And there’s that big hair “I drink Jack Daniels before I play ball for millions a year” dude right there with a woman on each arm. “…and since I’ve noticed you’re interested in the magazines we have out here, I’m glad to tell you that we can offer you [insert some random “great deal!” number here] for free with a [obscenely large year commitment].”

Must. Control. Fist-of-Death.

Just before I let my frustration take over, I heard out of the corner of my ear another cashier having to run thru the same song and dance. It wasn’t this kid’s fault that I couldn’t escape the store in a timely fashion… he sorta even had that “I’m doing a good job to help my company!” type thing going on… or maybe I’ve just been reading too much manga and I’ve gotten easy going when it comes some what nerdy guys that are working the Geek trenches or something.

Oh, make no mistake – I didn’t buy the subscription nor the warrantee – but at least I didn’t rip off his arm and beat him to death with it. And that’s a good deal of progress!

But Best Buy still pissed me off with this “hard sell at the POS” crap – that’s gotta end, if they expect to get any repeat business from customers…

5 thoughts on “Best Buy Pissed Me Off”

  1. I generally just try to look totally pissed and ready to snap at any moment when I make a purchase anywhere. This seems to scare the cashier into not talking. Saves alot of time and trouble.

  2. I assume, alas, that the suggested-sale stuff is part of what keeps the prices so low. I dislike shopping at BB, but the prices do keep pulling me back.

    But, yes, I’ve been irked at having to turn down three or more offers at the counter. I prefer to shop on the web when possible, and if I’m at BB, it’s usually (a) at lunch, and (b) because I want something right now, neither of which makes slowing down the check-out process a good thing.

  3. I dunno about the prices keeping low… they’re about the same as Circuit City and other stores on most items… I just think they’re trying to get a bit more cash, if they can. Just slows down the process, tho. Reminds me of when I go for an oil change at Jiffy Lube and they point out all of the FUD parts that need replacing.

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