Monday, March 21, 2005

A Hitchhiker's Guide to Buying a TV in Bakersfield

I made the mistake of attempting to return my dead TV and purchase a new one. The mistake being that Vice President Dick Cheney is in town today. Stockdale Hwy from Oak/Wible all the way down to CSUB is closed to all traffic. I cannot even begin to describe the total chaos this closure is causing. It took us almost an hour to get from downtown to K-Mart on Wilson. It took even longer to get home again. We actually saw the motorcade exiting the freeway heading toward the university. That was pretty cool.

K-mart was really great about returning my money and I thought about buying another one there, but I didn’t have much luck with the previous two, so we went to Sears. I found a TV that I like and within my price range and purchased it immediately. Just as he began to hand me the receipt, the man behind the register asked me “You have to pick that up at the warehouse. Is that okay?” “Um, I guess so. I replied. Isn’t that just upstairs?” Turns out the warehouse is out off of White Lane. It sure would have been nice to know that ahead of time.

We jumped back in the van and battled the traffic southwest until we finally located the warehouse just of Stine Road. After walking inside a strange, little shop, full of parts for washers and stuff, I stood in line for about 30 minutes while a man picked up his lawn mower and two women received their vacuums. When I finally stepped up to the counter the man look at me, receipt in hand and said “Oh – you need to drive around back to pick up your item.” UGH! Are you kidding me? It sure would have been nice if some could have told me that a half hour ago. I love standing in line for nothing.

So we pile back into the van AGAIN and drove around back. On the way we noticed the small, poorly hung sign indicating that is where I should have gone in the first place. They seriously need to think about hiring a new person to make their signs. The pick-up went quickly and then it was just a matter of getting home again without going insane in the snarled traffic. What the heck? He’s only the V.P. for goodness sake.

When I got home and unloaded the TV, I immediately called to have my satellite turned back on. I’m pretty sure the person who answered my call is the stupidest employee ever. At least I hope so. I had to repeat and spell all of my information three times. Plus, he seemed to have a mouth full of mush and I had to keep asking him “what did you say?”

It was a 3 1⁄2 hour ordeal, but I have a new working TV and I’m going to veg out in front of it for awhile.