Thursday, March 15, 2007

Ride it on out

For whatever reason, my Wal-Mart will not return bicycles anymore. We will repair them, but not return them. You buy it, it's yours. Really, you shouldn't be buying a bike at Wal-Mart anyway, but that's your business.

So this guy comes in last Thursday with a newish-looking bike and tells me he wants to return it. At first I thought he was an "Athletic Yuppie," but then I realized he was probably more of the "Pseudo-Sporting Trailer Trash" type, because Athletic Yuppies don't buy bicycles at Wal-Mart. Nor do they sport beat-up Adidas running shoes, knock-off Umbros and a size-too-small white Hanes T-shirt which didn't do anything to hide the gut that obviously gave lie to the fact that he DIDN'T ride that bike every day. Anyway.

This dude wants to return the bike because it "doesn't work." I inform him of our "Repair Only" policy and he starts getting agitated. Probably because the bike was stolen, because he didn't have a receipt -- which you know, normal people keep up with, especially if they've only had the thing for four days, as he claims. And another thing - if you bought it at a Wal-Mart 4o miles and six exits on the Interstate away, why are you trying to return it HERE? Scam-o-rama!

And then I get a rant about how Wal-Mart is losing its "customer service values" and how it doesn't appreciate its customers. My stock line is "I'm sorry sir."

And he goes "I don't think you're sorry at all." Which may be true. But it's not like I can tell him how I REALLY FEEL or call him on being an moron - or worse.

And then he demands a "receipt" for the bike repair. I tell him there is no "receipt" and that we'll call him when it is ready. "Well I want a receipt." And I go "I don't have a receipt to give you."

He leaves. I tape the ticket with his name and phone number on the bike and a description of the problem and wheel it over by the stamp machine.

And here's the kicker. I look up twenty-five customers and one hour later and the freaking bike is gone. GONE. No one knows where it is. I start asking around "Did you take that bike back to repair?" "Where is that blue and silver bike?" "Did you see a blue and silver men's bike?"

No one has seen anything.

So I figure someone saw a bike sitting around with a piece of paper on it and thought that paper was a reciept and rolled it right out the door. Any idiot (except the one that brought it in) can probably fix it and voila -- FREE BICYCLE!

I so don't want to be there when this man returns looking for that bike!

16 comments:

chunes said...

Hahaha, this reminds me of when I worked in layaway. Every so often after a bin audit, we'd have a missing package that we could not find anywhere. I always thought to myself, "Man I hope I'm not here when this customer wants to retrieve their layaway!"

:)

McBain said...

well, it looks like trailer trash is getting a free new bike!

Alec Usticke said...

How's he going to get a free new bike? He doesn't have a receipt for the repair!

Anonymous said...

In the customers defence, I can't believe that Walmart doesn't give any kind of ticket indicating that he has a bike dropped off for repair. What would prevent anyone from stopping in and picking a bike up? Shady Walmart employee tells his friend to come in and pick up a bike by pretending to be Bill Smith, who dropped off a bike for repair. Walmart has nothing to verify the guy is Bill Smith. This guys got nothing to proved that he dropped off a bike (well, other than this blog.......maybe he can wear the same clothes in).

High-Maintenance & Hostile Heidi said...

Yikes! Please keep us posted on this. It should be good...

Library Rat said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Sorry, I have no pity.

Still, it sucks if the guy somehow legitimately bought the bike...

FARfetched said...

Ohhhh maaannnn... I'll bet if it really was his bike, he's going to blame you (personally) for it!

you'dneverguess said...

Maybe he got freaked out since it was stolen and he took it back.

I hope that's the case, for your sake.

Rodger said...

Well, since the bike disappeared I'm expecting an excellent follow-up post.

bunny said...

I just heard you on NPR and had to check out your blog. The computerized scheduling you are dealing with is not new. I used something like it myself when I was a manager. It was another pie in the sky idea that looked good on paper but didn't work in the real world.
Re; Bike guy. He probably took the bike to try to return it somewhere else.

Michelle said...

I sympathize with you in every way - but I think Walmart is dead wrong in its policy to not give receipts for this kind of thing! I would never have left something behind without some way to prove it!

MavenofMoxie said...

I agree with what's been said already. I understand that you didn't have a receipt to give, but no way would I have left without some type of verification that I left the bike. For once, I suppose I'm at least partially on the side of the customer.

The customer probably took the bike, noticed how busy you were and will return claiming that his bike was stolen while in Wal-Mart's possession for repair. How will Wal-Mart prove differently? (Then again, how will he prove he did drop off a bike?) How will WM handle this one? The only thing they can do is either tell the customer he's a liar or ask him how much he paid for the bike and offer a refund (a new bike, a store credit or cash).

I'm very interested to find the outcome of this. Could no one check security tapes?

Debo Blue said...

Never thought I'd side w/the customer but yes, I'd never leave something w/o getting a rcpt for it. I mean we get rcpts for our dry cleaning, so Wally should have a policy to give rcpts for repair.

Hope you're not there when he gets back.

Chunes said...

At our store, we have assembly request tickets (we use them for repairs too) that we have to fill out for this sort of thing. Plus, the customer needs to have his original receipt so he can show that he is the owner of the bicycle. The transaction number on the receipt is compared to the transaction number that was transcribed onto the assembly request ticket from that receipt at the time of the assembly request.

Anonymous said...

Hey, doesn't your WM have security camera footage of the bike leaving?

Anonymous said...

I would be very surprised if the supposed owner took the bike. I would definately check the security tapes.

As for the anger, Although I don't always like the curses pronounced lately I see the blog as hillarious and look past those. I see the rants as a healthy release for the kind of stress he must be going through and am in awe of his self control while at work (I have to make an excuse to turn around so I can release my face from it's frozen smile to display a silent scream, mouth that they are idiots, or just roll my eyes to keep from reacting)

Kudos BBC