I'm a little embarrassed at how well I know the return policies of every single store you can think of. Any store. Name a store. Oh them? Yes, that would be a 30 day - full refund, with receipt situation (but you better have that bad boy...otherwise it’s a store credit and you know you only walked in there in the first place because there was an inviting chair on display that you sat in while you drank your latte) (maybe that was me. Yes, I'm remembering now...the chair, the latte...that was me)
One of the tools in my Professional Reverse Shopper arsenal is this cabinet we have. It's brown, it's old and conveniently - it holds a lot of crap. It was given to us by Grammy Fern. Henceforth and forevermore referred to as “the Grammy Fern cabinet” and referred to on a daily basis (oh I don’t know, throw it in the Grammy. Why did I buy this…?? Grammy. What is up with thi…Grammy. Where is th…Grammy. Why are you hiding in the Grammy Fern cabinet? Mom?) All of the things I return, aka 98% of the things I buy – end up there, waiting for their returns to their respective stores. Like I said, it’s a big cabinet.
I think it would be safe to say the Grammy is an enabler. By her sheer capacity for storage. Okay, let me give you a real-life example which will involve food (as most of my real-life examples do). So, if I eat, say, an amazing concoction from one of those froyo places where they sell it by weight? (and by the way, brilliant brilliant marketing strategy for someone like me. I can get as much as I want of anything? Even the oreo bits??) (a distant fading voice might be saying something about having to pay for it as I walk around wide-eyed, building a giant tower in the already giant bowl…) I hand over the cash and proceed to eat every last bite, with the stunned girl at the counter going, whuu...
So, yes. I eat it. Then I sit and think. (the sugar recently consumed helps here) If I can get a hold of one of those soft-serve froyo MAKER thingies? The money I’d save!! I’m sure Walmart sells them. They sell everything, don’t they? Broccoli? That would be in the produce section, of course. Air-compressors? Why, check out our air-compressor section! Those little felt-covered thingies people use to make crafts? No clue. But I still think they probably carry them at Walmart.
So I buy the closest facsimile to a frozen yogurt slash ice-cream maker that I could find. Only to come home and shamefully peruse my purchase (coming down off the sugar-high from recently consumed sugar helps here) and ponder my ridiculousness before I chuck it in the Grammy Fern, ready for return sometime within the next 90 days. Walmart has the most flexible return policy known to mankind. They barely even glance at your receipt. They are usually too busy eavesdropping on the guy over there trying to return the electric shaver that he’s clearly been using for some time (it’s so not so gently used) although given his Sasquatch-esque appearance, not on his face. Which is disturbing, to say the least - either way, I bet they took back.
Back to school shopping was fun, right? I mean, you wouldn’t think I’d need to return any of that? Why wouldn’t I just buy what the girls need?
Oh ho ho ho no…(that is supposed to sound like a thunderous blend of diabolical and maniacal laughter, I like to mix them for dramatic effect) I have teenagers. The reason for the new calculator was “I drew all over my old one.” The reason for new jeans as opposed to the nicely folded stack of 15 pairs in the closet? They are "skinny" (exasperated eye-roll) and "jegging" is now all the rage. I rest my case. I held off on the clothes...I already know that they won't be wearing any of the new stuff until at least October at which time everything you could buy in September is now drastically reduced. See? Little tip there. No problem, that's what I'm here for. You were wondering, weren't you?
So, it was strictly school supplies for now...hello again Walmart.
It was a mess in there! Pandemonium! Uproar! Mayhem! (or as you might be thinking...who gave this woman a Thesaurus!! ) The school supply section may have started out as nicely organized bins of erasers and rulers and pencil-cases but at the September point of things, it is a picked-over pile of random items. It would not be surprising to come upon, say, a can of cream of mushroom soup in there among the highlighters and notebooks. I just buy a couple of everything (even the cream of mushroom soup) with plans to return most of it (even the cream of mushroom soup).
I wanted to talk about Sephora and the joys of returning several hundred – yes, hundred – dollars’ worth of make-up. I stand in Sephora, with some mascara that costs $75 and I am flabbergasted. I am holding $75 mascara. In my hand! I could actually own $75 mascara and have it in my house. On my eye-lashes! I could buy this and return it. I feel the temptation but stay strong. I mean, where does it go after, seriously? Do they re-use it? Why is returning allowed? Are they for realsies? (shhh, no one say anything…just return it and walk away – walk away!) I feel a lot of guilt about Sephora in general.
It's making me realize that I have many many things to say about Sephora. Their products (the insanity!) the prices of their products (the insanity!) the lengths women will go to hide and cover up and highlight and beautify! (the insanity…wait. Maybe only me there again)
Anyway, that's another blog for another time. Right now I have some reverse shopping to do. Boomerang time, people.