*The names have been changed to protect the stupid.
I need your help with this one. Here’s the situation:
While doing some Easter shopping a couple of months ago, I stop in a store that we’ll call “Infinitely Drinking Age”. Some might argue that I’m too old to shop in this store, since I’m actually drinking age plus a decade. But then I would argue that Infinitely Drinking Age should stop tempting me with the cute jewelry on the mannequins in the store window. That’s what started all this.
As I walk past Infinitely Drinking Age on my way to a more age-appropriate store, (since I’m already unnecessarily protecting identities, we’ll call this store Schman Schmaylor Schmoft) I notice this kinda cute necklace on a mannequin. I go into the store in search of the necklace to get a closer look. I could not find it, so I ask a sales associate to help me. Together, we still could not find it, so I ask her if she could get the necklace from the mannequin in the window so that I could try it on. She says that she needs to get a manager, which she proceeds to do.
However, the girl that comes out to help me (and I call her a girl because she might be 11 years old…12 at best) turns out to not be a manager at all, but another sales associate. I later learn that the real manager was [allegedly] on her lunch break. Anyway, I ask her if she would get the necklace from the mannequin for me. She explains that they are not allowed to remove anything from their mannequins, per corporate policy. I explain to her that apparently, this was the only necklace of its kind left in the store, so trying on the necklace from the mannequin was my only option. She insists that she is not allowed to remove anything from the mannequin, regardless of the reason. So I explain to her that the point of a mannequin is to “model” items that the store SELLS to make a profit. I have never gone to a store where they weren’t HAPPY to disrobe a mannequin to make a sale because if the item stays on the mannequin, that is a missed sale and it DEFEATS THE PURPOSE OF ADVERTISING…doesn’t it?? We argue for several minutes while I try to convince her to at least take the necklace off the mannequin to let me see it! Because if I don’t like it up close, there is no need in even continuing this “discussion” because I will not want to buy it anyway. She finally calls another associate who was about 5 years her junior (so yes, that makes him 6 or 7) to retrieve the necklace from the mannequin. But when the little boy climbs up in the store window he realizes that once he takes the necklace off the mannequin, whether to sell it or just to show it, he will be violating store policy. So he says “ma’am, can you get a good look at the necklace from where you are now?” NO. I CAN’T. WHICH IS EXACTLY WHY I ASKED FOR SOMEONE TO TAKE IT DOWN!
By now, I’m extra-agitated and wondering why I didn’t just keep walking to Schman Schmaylor Schmoft. I never intended to stop in this stupid store anyway and I’ve been arguing with these kids for the last 20 minutes! But at this point, it’s the principle of the thing. So the little boy calls over a bigger little boy who claims to be an assistant manager. They take the necklace, write down the barcode, and check their system to see the next closest store that has one available. Turns out, an Infinitely Drinking Age ~10 miles from this one has the necklace. And they told me that the necklace was $8. I thought: (1) I will probably burn way more than $8 in gas driving to this next location and then back home, and (2) WHY DO I HAVE TO DRIVE TO ANOTHER LOCATION TO GET A NECKLACE THAT YOU HAVE RIGHT THERE IN YOUR HAND??! They write down the barcode for me so I can have it when I get to the next store or if I decide to buy it online. And then they take my phone number and say they are going to call me when they can confirm that the store their system identifies as having the $8 culprit, does in fact have it. Of course, I didn’t hold my breath for that call.
Because I was so caught off guard by the whole situation, I didn’t think to take a picture of the necklace the day I was in the store. But I recently saw these two necklaces pictured above (similar to the Infinitely Drinking Age necklace) in other stores and snapped a shot with my BlackBerry. It brought back not-so-fond memories of the earlier shopping experience…which leads me to why I need your help.
Has the proverbial statute of limitations passed…have I waited too long to write to the corporate office and question/dispute this alleged policy? Is my wanting to contact the company completely reasonable or over-reacting? What would you do? I need your suggestions! Share with me in the comments!