Friday, November 03, 2006

don't even bother reading's just stupid

One interesting way in which my grieving manifests itself is this: inappropriate anger at people in the world around me.

On the Monday before my baby's funeral, I decided to return the maternity bathing suit my mom had bought for me on sale at Target. We'd been planning to do some August swimming and I dragged my feet on a suit till my mom finally just bought the silly thing for me online and had it sent to my house. Well, obviously I had no need for it anymore (I hadn't even cut off the tags yet) so I went online and followed the instructions for printing out scannable receipts which then have to be taken to the service desk at a real Target store. It was a pain in the rear, and the two pieces had shipped separately so I had to do them one at a time. Hubbo was with me when we went in to do the return and we were waited on by a young-ish girl, probably in her early 20s. She tried to scan the sheets I handed her and it didn't work so she said we'd have to go over to the gift registry kiosk and do the whole thing again, so she could scan in the code. Hubbo asked, in a reasonable tone, if she couldn't just try to manually enter the numbers. She shot back, "well, that's a lot of work for me."

I was 2 days out from delivering my stillborn child and when I tell you I could have climbed over the counter and throttled that girl with my bare hands and felt no remorse, I totally mean it.

Thank goodness my husband was there to say, in a slightly less reasonable tone, "well, it's a lot of work for us to go and do this all again, so WHY DON'T YOU TRY ENTERING THE NUMBERS MANUALLY."

She did, and lo, it worked. I got my mom's money back and we went on our way. I realize she did not know the situation, but nevertheless, her customer service skills could use some work. She is lucky I was not there alone or she'd have more problems than that.

I started feeling that inappropriate anger again today when I got one of those nasty notices from the bank telling me they were charging me $32 for insufficient funds in my checking account. I freaked because I know there were perfectly sufficient funds in there to cover our bills for the end of the month. When I investigated I discovered that my mortgage payment had been deducted twice, and while there was certainly enough money to pay it once, there was not enough to double it and still cover the other bills.

After being transferred among - I'm not kidding you here - 4 different departments at my mortgage company, I finally got to a gal who could help me. Turns out I had accidentally set up an extra profile in the online payments because when I sign in under MY name, I don't see my husband's profile. It looked like my mortgage wasn't set up to be I thought I should set it up, and avoid missing a mortgage payment altogether because THERE IS NO GREATER FINANCIAL ERROR THAN THAT. Ask me how I know this. But I was wrong, and so they took twice as much money as they needed to, which seriously screwed up other things, like the car payment. The extra profile has been deleted, but when she transferred me to yet another department to ask for my money back, I was told (after holding several times) that I have to submit a written request for the refund. Awwww, come on. Are they serious? Forget that. Turns out I can just leave it alone and we're a month ahead, and I'll just have to juggle some funds around at the end of November.

Then I had to call the bank, because I want my stupid $32 back! It wasn't my fault this happened (ok, it sort of was, but not really because the mortgage company website stinks). And when I called I was feeling that inappropriate anger sensation. I had my speech rehearsed about how if they wouldn't give me back my $32 I would come right down there, so help me, and close my accounts, because there are a lot of banks in this town and I can easily take my business elsewhere. The girl who answered the phone (after I went through fifty-seven menus) must have sensed that in my voice, because they were able to credit my account the $32 "as a courtesy." I should hope so.

That is all. I hope I haven't wasted too much of your day.


Pam said...

And as "a courtesy" you won't come down there and stick your foot up her ass, right? :)

All this online stuff either works really great to pay your bills with or it puts you into that endless loop of useless people. Ok, I just gotta ask because today I feel the need to waste as much time as possible - just how do you know about making the worst financial mistake ever? I only ask because I totally thought I was the queen of financial errors:)

kate said...

You got that right, Pam! Too funny.

I had a problem back in the spring where my mortage payment was deducted in the wrong amount (too little) and I spent 3 days chasing my tail trying to fix it. They get really nasty really fast, threatening you with reporting to the credit bureaus and all that. NIGHTMARE.

alisa in CT said...

Don't you just "Love" the term customer service? There is no service to the customer.

Jenn said...

Hush with those "wasting" comments!
Last winter I badly sprained my ankle, but needed to go to Target to return a christmas gift (I had ordered it for hubby online and it wasn't the color they said to was going to be). They refused my return because I didn't have my email order confirmation. Even though it was something they had ON THE SHELF right then, and was in perfect condition, and I had the packing slip. Asshats. They also really gave us the business when we tried to return duplicate wedding gifts that were given more than 3 months before the wedding. Apparently you can only return things 3 months before and after your actual wedding date, regardless of when you set up your registry (thanks a lot - we were engaged and registered for almost 2 years). I do love the Target, but some of their policies suck.
Sorry you had trouble with the bank too - at least they gave you your $32 back!

Anonymous said...

Your customer service experience really struck home with me. My experience was with Best Buy. My 14 year old son received a CD for Christmas that ended up being one he already had. The gift giver gave him the original receipt to exchange it for something else. Well immediately after Christmas our entire family came down with a nasty flu bug, a few days later a friend of my husband died suddenly so we had a funeral and all that. Immediately after that my kids were out of the country for 10 days on a mission trip. The first chance we had to make the exchange was a few days after my kids returned to the country. We were told we missed their return policy by 2 days and there was nothing they could do. I asked the customer service clerk if they could make an exception because 1) of the extenuating circumstances 2) the CD we were returning was still current and on their store shelf 3) we had the receipt to prove we were not scamming them for cash, besides we didn't want the cash, we just wanted another CD. No can do. I asked to see a manager. I explained the situation to him and said if he wanted I had urgent care receipts, a funeral memorial and plane tickets to prove my story, I could run home and get them. He was only rude to us and said we should know their store return policy - which by the way was not printed on the receipt, it was posted on the wall above the cashiers. I explained I do not normally shop Best Buy because of another bad customer service experience so how would I know. He called security and had us escorted out the door - by my arm! Over a $14.99 CD - that we had a receipt for! Can you imagine? I have never even received a parking ticket in my life but I felt like a criminal. So VERY long story short I have not stepped foot in a Best Buy store since and neither do my friends and family. We have found if you do a little searching you can find everything you could ever want to buy at Best Buy elsewhere or on the internet -most of the time a little cheaper. Oh, and glad the bank charge turned out OK for you!

Karen said...

Aaaaaaaaaaaah! The pain! I've so been there. And ditto on the Best Buy incident. Their service is HORRIBLE.

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