A few years ago I attempted to boycott Target because I thought their store organization and lack of efficiency was maddening. Unfortunately, this happened at about the same time that I became too much of a snob to shop at my local Wal-Mart, so eventually I caved and grudgingly became a Target shopper once again.
Well, the arrival of my new washer and dryer, whose stackability and quiet noise level have greatly improved my quality of life, created a void in the kitchen. I am in need of some extra storage, so I set out to look for a nice small shelf to put in the dryer hole. There’s a window above it, so it had to be short, and it’s a very specific size, so it was going to take a magical, perfect shelf to fit the bill.
Well, I found the shelf of my dreams at Target. Good news: it was even on sale. Bad news: there were no more in stock. So I circled around Target for fifteen minutes, searching for an employee, and when I finally found one, I led them back to my shelf and we had the following infuriating conversation.
L: “Can you tell me if you have any more of these shelves?”
Employee: (types into her scanner) “No, sorry, that item is out of stock. Actually, it’s discontinued, so we won’t be getting any more in.”
L: “Hmm. Well, I REALLY like that shelf.”
Employee smiles sympathetically, but offers me no solution.
L: “So, what happens to this shelf?” (indicating display model)
E: “We’ll throw it away.”
L: “Can I buy it?”
E: “No, sorry. We don’t sell displays.”
L: “So let me get this straight. There is no way that I can give you money to take home this shelf that you’re going to throw away soon anyway?”
E: “No, sorry. It’s our policy.”
I asked if she had a manager, and she said not one that could sell me a display. Frustrated, I left the store empty-handed.
Now, I can’t say that I was totally surprised, because Stephen and I had actually found the shelf a couple of weeks ago, and he had had a similiar conversation with a different employee. But the complete irrationality of the situation convinced me that maybe Stephen just wasn’t charming enough when he asked. Besides, the fact that the display was still taking up store space made me think that Target might be more willing to deal, since throw-away day was two weeks closer than it had been when we originally asked.
NO SUCH LUCK! Meanwhile, my kitchen organization project remains at a standstill.