Monday, September 10, 2018

Cranky Shelley, More Than EVER

It's been a long time since I've done a Cranky Shelley post, and I don't know why, but lately there have been some things happen that I am just not willing to let pass.  Maybe it's because I'm in that "I'm 50 (ok, 55), no-holds-barred" mode, maybe it's because there are so many national issues that I hate but are out of my control, but whatever the case, I'm not letting things go without getting my point across to the powers that be.

First up, forced charity.  That whole "would you like to round up your purchase to donate to XXX cause" question that seems to come everywhere - the pet store, the office supply store, clothing stores, the grocery store - I mean, come ON.  Just let me make my purchase without having to say no to giving extra money to whatever cause your corporation has deemed worthy.  Jeff and I do donate to causes that are meaningful to us, but we don't like being hit up for extra money after we've already given a store our business.

With that said, you can imagine my ire when I was shopping last weekend and the clerk asked if I would like to round up.  I said no, and he said REALLY?  I said yes, really - I don't want to round up.  He proceeded to tell me how the money goes to a certain program; the premise behind that store is that for every ten dollars spent, a meal is donated to Feeding America.  Great - I like that they are civic-minded, and they will donate many meals with what I was spending.  But to have that clerk push and push for an additional 74 cents was irritating.  And the topper was when he printed my receipt, he had indeed rounded it up.  I saw that and told him I was not happy about it, but the entire transaction took so long that I just signed and left the store.  But wait, there's more:  When I got home, I emailed the company about what had happened, and I included the clerk's name, which was conveniently printed on the receipt, and store number.  To their credit, customer serviced emailed me back within 12 hours (and this was on Labor Day), aghast at the behavior of the clerk.  They said they will speak with him and his manager to correct this behavior, and I'm happy with this outcome.  But really, stores - just let me shop in peace!

Next is my Ninja smoothie blender.  You know, the one I bought after I returned home from North Carolina?  Even though it was incredibly ear-splitting loud, I love how nicely it made my smoothies - my blender wasn't handling frozen fruit without a ton of water, which at that point made a very thin drink, not the thicker smoothie that I wanted.  I used my Ninja several times a week for smoothies, and then on Wednesday, I put all my ingredients in the blender cup, popped on the machine, and...nothing.  It was dead.  D-E-A-D, dead.  I'd had it for only six weeks.  If you think I was extremely irritated by this, you would be correct.

I bought it through Amazon, which I'm realizing now, was a mistake.  Had I bought it at Bed Bath and Beyond, I could have just returned it, with the receipt, for up to a year.  But with Amazon, the return window had closed.  Still, I contacted their customer service because this was obviously a defective appliance.  In turn, they connected me with the Ninja customer service, who, after quite a while of going through every way they could think of to get the machine working again, agreed that it was dead (no kidding) and said they could authorize sending me a new blender.  Great, right?  Not so fast.  First I had to box up and send the old system back, using a prepaid return shipping label that they would email to me.  But then they insisted that I pay for shipping for the new blender, at a cost of $20 plus tax.  WHAT THE WHAT??  It's freaking defective!  Why should I have to pay anything after six weeks?  I was so mad.  I didn't pay the return money and at this point, I'm still in contact with Amazon's customer service about this not being resolved.

I have no idea what will end up happening, but in the month after I purchased the blender, there have been multiple one-star reviews on Amazon with people experiencing the exact same issue as me - a dead blender after just a short time of use.  So I'm irritated that my awesomely healthy smoothies are not happening - it was such a great way to get a lot of nutrients thanks to the kale and fruit and yogurt - and I've started looking at other smoothie blenders only to read in reviews that so many of them seem to croak out after just a few months of use.  I do not want to spend a fortune on something like a Vitamix - and I won't - but dang it, I really want to have my smoothies!

Another irritant is with Ikea - I bought new bath towels when we did our house renovation, which replaced the same kind that I'd had for about five years...they had just faded with all the washing, so I wanted to replace them.  Well, two of the eight that I bought have already shredded along the edges.  So along with other items that we were returning, I put those two towels into the stack because Ikea has a 365 day satisfaction guarantee with their products.  Would you believe the clerk wouldn't take them back because they were damaged?  No matter how much Jeff kept saying that they were damaged because they were defective, neither the clerk nor the manager would budge.  As you might imagine, Jeff has sent a strongly-worded email to Ikea.  So does Ikea stand by their guarantee or not?  I will let you know, but right now it's not looking good.  Very disappointed in you, Ikea.

Last, and I won't bore you with all the details, but we still have not received one retirement payment yet.  To recap, Jeff retired on June 30.  His retirement coordinator at TRS (Teacher's Retirement System) said that the first payment is delayed about six weeks while they get all the paperwork in their system.  Fine, we were aware of that because it's a known thing, and we were prepared, money-wise.  We should have seen a payment in mid-August, for July, and then another payment on August 31, for the month of August.  NOTHING.  Again, we are still fine thanks to planning and also because Jeff has another job, but holy crap, how do people who retire with no other job make this work?  Along with not receiving any payments yet, we have been paying our share of the monthly insurance premiums...so we're doing our part, but they sure as heck are taking their sweet time to do their part.  Jeff has been in contact with TRS about this, but so far, we're still waiting.  It's irritating, as you might imagine.

OK.  That's enough crank for today.  Thank you for listening - and if you have any crankiness you need to vent about, comment away!

18 comments:

  1. Ten thousand times YES on the forced charity. I donate to the causes that mean something to me and that's enough. I cannot believe he went ahead and rounded your purchase up anyway! What is that even!?
    I'm so sad about your ninja! I have one and love it and have used it for years. Whomp whomp. I hope you are able to get this resolved.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So glad I'm not the only one irritated by forced charity! And I have a feeling the older Ninjas were made better than the current version. :(

      Delete
  2. Wow, you have every right to be cranky about ALL this stuff! I never realized how many stores ask you to round up or just flat out donate an extra dollar to charity. Like you said, I DO donate to charity it they are the ones I choose. I dont want to feel guilty every time I go to the store for something because I don't donate. Actually, I'm going to keep track for the rest of the .onth and see how many stores do that. I wonder if that sales clerk got some kind of bonus for how many customers he got to donate.

    I did not know Jeff was a teacher. I hope he sees some $ soon!

    My cranky for this month so far was this... I ordered a pair of shoes from Dickssportinggoods.com ( for a gift) and when they arrived they were clearly worn. The soles were dirty, which I can some what understand d had they been tried on in the store, but I ordered them online. But also, there was dirt stuck in the grids of the bottom of the shoes. I did an online review AND I filled out a survey that Dicks sent me and I still have heard nothing back.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wondered that as well, if the clerks got a bonus (which would be ironic) for the most round-ups in a month.

      Holy crap that shoe purchase from Dick's! I hope you were able to return them!

      Delete
  3. My Ninja blender started smoking (in the literal sense) after about a year. I contacted the "Ninja Community" as they call themselves (kinda creepy if you ask me) and they sent me a brand new Ninja, free shipping and all. They also paid for me to return the old one. Too good to be true? It seems as if they've changed their customer service and not for the better. Maybe because the new model is defective and they are all failing? Ugh...

    I LOATHE when stores ask for a donation at the checkout. As if they don't make enough money that they can't donate that dollar or whatever on my sale. Like you, I look it as a way to make themselves look good. Whole Foods has started doing it for "Feed the Children" and puh-leaze, Amazon owns them now. As if saying no to feeding children doesn't make me feel like a jerk...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wonder if you are right, that Ninja's customer service has gone downhill because they are dealing with so many defective reports.

      Not feeding the children is worse than when I click NO on the "will you help a pet in need?" as I'm checking out at the pet store - hey people, I AM helping out two pets in need, my own! Sheesh.

      Delete
  4. Longtime lurker here! I have had a magic bullet blender for 6 years and it’s still going strong! It’s noisy but I blend right in my cup and you can buy replacement blades pretty cheap. I agree with you on most of these, interested to see what IKEA says!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Suzie, thanks for coming out of lurkdom! :) I'm thinking about buying either a Magic Bullet or a Nutra Bullet (I think they are different) as a replacement for the hunk of junk currently sitting on my kitchen counter.

      Delete
  5. I had the same issue with Ninja over my very expensive coffee "concierge" that suddenly sprung a leak. Turns out, had I read reviews I would have seen that, but alas I did not. I also refused to send them any money and I brought out my old faithful Cuisinart drip pot that I have had for 15 years and it still works. But I do love my Ninja blender. Of course I got a deal on an expensive one on a Black Friday sale so that may be the difference. I hope you get it resolved!

    You have legitimate gripes on every single thing listed here. One of our local grocery stores does something that I feel is nice: they pre-pack some bags/boxes with things the local food banks need and put the price of the contents on the bag. If I want to donate, I just pick up the actual bag, take it with me to the check out and pay for it. Then they put that bag in a large box for the food bank to pick up. So much better than the constant pressure!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Beginning to wonder if the entire Ninja brand has gone downhill - sorry about your coffee concierge!

      That is a good idea for the grocery store donation. The store I usually shop at has a barrel at the exit for food donations which works well when they have a "buy XX, get 9 other items free" coupon deal - you can drop off what you know you won't use.

      Delete
  6. That forced charity is so bogus. For a $10 purchase, they can donate one meal, which literally costs 18-38 CENTS. Can't they do that without asking YOU to pay for it??? Anyway, around here, the only place that asks for donations is the grocery store once in a while, and it was always for "Children's Miracle Network." I never felt bad for saying no, since that was WHERE I WORKED!

    I just bought new bath towels at Costco, and that was one thing I was worried about--the edges fraying. Hopefully the upper management at Ikea will replace for you.

    I remember something like that happening when I retired. But I did get paid when they said I would.

    You know what? Some of these companies have Facebook sites. When you complain long and loud on there, sometimes they are very quick to respond!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm sure that $10 meal IS 38 cents and the rest is administrative costs...

      I did laundry yesterday and discovered that a hand towel from that same purchase has frayed along an edge. What JUNK.

      Delete
  7. I am totally with you on the forced charity thing!! I've never had a cashier argue with me about it though - I hope that cashier learned a lesson about CUSTOMER SERVICE. What a dolt.

    I make my smoothies in a cheap Hamilton Beach smoothie blender - I really only use it during the summer, but it blends up my frozen fruit nicely. And if it breaks, well I can just go buy another one (although this one has lasted a longer than I thought it would!!).

    I am starting to rethink buying things on Amazon unless it states "free returns" - I HATE losing money simply because I want to return something. And no, you should not have to pay a shipping fee for something that is defective - that's just wrong.

    You have every right to be cranky!! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amen to everything you said! I'll have to look at your blender when I get unmad enough to go buy a new one.

      Delete
  8. OMG to ALL of that. I would be at wit's end. I can't believe the clerk did that - harass you about it SO MUCH then do it without your permission? What the actual f. I am glad you said something.

    I hope IKEA gets its head out of its ass and helps you out. Also, keep at Amazon. They will almost always side with the customer. I know from the seller side.

    I hope Jeff starts seeing that $$$ soon.

    GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm about ready to hit up Amazon again - it is crazy how many of these machines have stopped working so soon!

      Delete
  9. Oh the forced charity. Basically guilting you into giving. I grew up Catholic, so working the guilt button is a memory I like to leave back then. I drop change in a lot of boxes as I shop, but I do it when *I* choose and not because someone asked. That clerk was way out of line.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Based on the comments, it seems like forced charity is something no one likes. I wonder why companies would do something that irritates their customers?

      Delete

I love hearing from you and read each and every comment! Comments on older posts are moderated, so they won't show up right away - sorry to my real readers, but spammers love to hit old posts, so this is necessary.