No excuse not to run now

This post is dedicated to Alex at the Apple store in the Danbury Fair Mall. You did me a solid, and I promised I’d write about it, even though it’s hard to get my thoughts in line with this pretty new WordPress back page. So many new things to click on!

Also, before I get going, one last round of applause for the CYOB participants and Nancy Pearl Wannabe’s organizational skills. I really had a lot of fun reading those, and I’m impressed with the talented fiction writers out there. Thanks, everyone!

Do you remember way back when, in a time before broken ankles when I bought my Nike+ iPod? I was so happy with it that I created a blog category called “shilling.” I loved the way the little pedometer in the shoe would track my run so that I could upload it afterwards and compare it to other runs.

I did fourteen runs with this system, but had to stop when I got a little too inspired and hurt my knees, forcing me to take it easy until the fall. By the time I was ready to run again, I up and broke my ankle, so the gizmo sat in the box, waiting.  When I was ready to try it out again in January, the iPod was unable to receive information from the sensor, because the battery was dead.

I had saved all the packaging from the gizmo, so I packed it all back, and took it to the Apple store in Nyack, about an hour and half away.  (I live in the heart of IBM country, so I doubt this fair town’s getting an Apple store anytime soon.  We don’t even have Sephora, for goodness’ sake.)  I got to the store, and they were all like, “We can’t do a return without the original receipt if you didn’t buy it here.  Take it back to Nike, they can replace it.”

So I call Nike, and they’re all like, “No, you have to take this back to the Apple store.  We just make the shoes with the pedometer insert, they do the technology.”

When I was all, “No, they won’t take it, they sent me to you,” they said, “did you try taking it back to the place you bought it?”

And I was like, “okay, to the shoe store in the Galleria, then.”

Before going, I decided to dig up my receipt, which I keep stapled to my credit card statement.  And I know what you’re thinking, “Wow she’s organized.  Why is it then that she can’t remember to pay her bills before the due date and pays late fees every month?” and I’m like, “yeah, why is that?”  But the problem with digging up the receipt was that it was undiggable since I had exchanged the shoes I bought at the same time as the gizmo, and the store had kept the original in that transaction, all I had was the receipt that showed the excahnge.  So armed with only that paper, I went back to the shoe store.

They were all, “if this was within 3 months, we could exchange it, but this is seven months old, so you’ll have to take it back to Apple.”  I’m all, “they don’t want it without an original receipt, can you please print one for me seeing that I only have a return receipt.” They were all, “We can’t print original receipts anymore since corporate decided that people were using them for fraud.  But we can go to the computer and print up proof that you once had an original receipt here.  Please wait, it should only take a minute.”  Evidently in the shoe store world, one minute is equal to 25 Earth minutes, which is how long I waited for my computer print-out proving that I once had an original receipt, and hoped that would be proof enough for the Apple people in Nyack.

Between swim meets, and working on Saturdays, and creating a business with my mom (which is on hold for a little while,) I never got time to bring my broken gizmo and proof of receipt to the Apple people.  In the meantime, I looked up product reviews on their website, and it seems that everyone gives them 5 starts for product awesomeness and 0 stars for battery suckiness.  Finally, this Sunday, I had plans to be in the area, so I picked up my broken gizmo and paperwork and brought it down to Nyack.  The girl at the store was all, “Yeah, we’ve been having problems with those, so what we do now is diagnose it at the genius bar and then give you a replacement part.  What time is your appointment?”

Because I didn’t need one last time, I was all, “I didn’t need one last time, so I didn’t make one this time,” and she was all, “well, there are no more appointments today.”

I was sad, so I tried to bargain, “well, can I leave it here and come and pick it up next time I’m at this mall that I’m never at?”  She was all, “no.”

“Well can I take it to some other place?”  So we go online, and she’s all, “There’s a free appointment at 6:50 in Danbury,” so we book it.  Before I can make the Nyack to Danbry trip, I make a quick pit stop in the Middle-of-Nowhere town (2 hours from Nyack) to work out with Birmingham (FYI for those of you who are taking notes, we’re testing the waters of friendship, so every time I see him, I have to say, “I’m allowed to see other people and so are you” because I’m a good communicator like that.  But really, how could I not be friends with him?  He’s the only local I know who is a Battlestar Galactica fan and has access to a huge TV.)  The Nyack to Middle-of-Nowhere-Town to Danbury is not really that ridiculous, because the Danbury mall is on the same road as the Planet Fitness in the Middle-of-Nowhere-town.  On the road 62 miles east, that is.

I’m a fan of giving myself extra time, so I got to Danbury 45 minutes before my appointment.  The guy at the store was all, “we’re running behind, can you come back later?” so I was all, “since you have a Sephora at this mall, O.K.”  The Sephora had my eyeliner and the Haagen Dazs had my smoothie so I didn’t mind waiting so much.  When it was finally my turn at the Apple store, Alex was all, “did you bring the broom of the Wicked Witch of the West?” and I was like, “yes, and oh God if you don’t solve my problem right now, I’m going to tear this place apart, and I’ll probably never go running again.”  They took my gizmo and as they diagnosed it they were like, “this is really old… do we even make this anymore… what kind of stinky product doesn’t have a ready light to tell you if the battery is on or off… I think we’re going to have to order a replacement… I don’t think we can order a replacement…” and so on until they heard the people at the Kay Jewelers across the way vacuuming up and realized that the mall was closing, and decided it was not worth spending 30 minutes on a $30 gizmo.  I caught on to that and was all like, “If I don’t have to drive 40 minutes to Danbury again, that would be nice.”  So they just gave me a new one.  AKA, a “retail swap.”  Thank you Apple people, that was cool.

That means I’m running tonight, and since it’s no longer vegan March, I’m totally having free pizza at the gym to celebrate.

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21 responses to this post.

  1. Yay for pizza and running. Also, the apple store can be quite intimidating, but because they make about a billion dollars a second they always replace their crap.

    That’s right, they do. They should have sent me one for free from the get-go.

  2. Also yay for retail swap.

    Good luck with your water testing with Birmingham. I love the disclaimer at each get together.

    Yeah, that’s the thing with men, you gotta keep ’em in line.

  3. Oh, my lord, customer service stories always make my eyes bleed. I’m so glad yours had a happy ending! And, of course, yay for pizza.

    I hope I didn’t hurt you too badly with this one, then!

  4. Posted by Jennifer M. on April 7, 2008 at 10:15 am

    Go free pizza! Is it sad that that is the main thing I took from your post? Oh well, at least you got to hang at Sephora.

    Sometimes, you just remember the last thing.

  5. Posted by nancypearlwannabe on April 7, 2008 at 10:18 am

    The Apple store makes me break out in hives every time I go in there, even if I’m just going in to look around. Still, those iPhones are too pretty not to have.

    I want the iPhone to work with superior Verizon technology, I do I do.

  6. OMG, I’m exhausted just for reading that romp across NY.

    Thank goodness I had some good music.

  7. Posted by mfijal98 on April 7, 2008 at 10:36 am

    I love how you make every store exciting! I’d totally be your running buddy if we were neighbors!

    I’ll have to settle for being buddies with my iPod.

  8. That whole experience made my brain bleed. I’m glad it had a happy ending.

    I’m making people bleed from important places today. That was not my intent!

  9. If I had read that whole thing only to find that they had not replaced that thing for you, I’d have driven to New York and personally kicked some ass on your behalf. Thanks for not making me do that.

    Well, if you had done that for me, I probably would have treated you to dinner or something, so keep that in mind for next time.

  10. I think all of that was just a test of your resolve. It’s probably their new way of combatting fraud… if you’re willing to jump through all those hoops and criss-cross across the state twice for a $30 product, they should probably help you out.

    Also, when you said Galleria, I thought maybe you had purchased the gizmo on your trip to MN, and I thought damn that would suck if you had to return it there. (Except wait. No, it wouldn’t, because you could come visit ME!) 🙂

    Sorry, the other Galleria. Although any reason to come visit again…

  11. Hurray! Happy ending!

    Huzzah indeed.

  12. Apple should be running for you after making you jump through that many hoops.

    That and the dough I dropped on a new macbook.

  13. Your life should be a documentary. Or a reality show. It is in my head.

    At least I would have one viewer!

  14. How much gas money did you burn doing all that? Sorry, had to ask.

    I’m eating a half-free pizza as I read this (and typing with one hand). Hooray for free pizza and running!

    That very thought (about the gas) ran through my head while I was doing it, so I managed to work other necessary activities into my trip, and I took the shorter and more scenic route, and kept it to under 65 like you suggested. Please don’t be mad!

  15. Wow. Back to running and free pizza! That’s awesome.

    So after vegan month, do you think you’ll curb your cheese eating, or are you so starved for cheese that April will be all about it?

    Well, I’m being more careful about it, but I’m also having an unadvertised no pasta or ramen April, and I’m only eating dairy when it’s really worth it.

  16. Posted by Sarah on April 7, 2008 at 12:21 pm

    OMG- You are a stong and patient woman. I would have already been in tears, and the gizmo would have already been in the ocean about halfway through that adventure.

    I thought about doing that, believe me. It’s just that I like it so much, I really wanted it back.

  17. That sounds like the coolest thing ever. Can you only get it with Nike shoes? (The only shoes I can wear are Saucony Grid Stabil – I over-pronate quite badly. I always have to stock up when I’m in the States.)

    Yeah, that’s one of the other drawbacks, it only works with specific Nike shoes, in the same way that iPhones only work with AT&T. I also have pronating problems, and I was using Saucony shoes to combat that, but the Nike ones I bought to go with the gizmo seem to be working really well, although I’ve never had the chance to do serious distance in them, and I did have the knee problem. Oh, and the other drawback is that the gizmo only works with iPod mini. I’m not certain if they have plans to expand it to other realms, especially since they’ve gotten so much flack from the bad batteries, but keep your eye out for it if they do.

  18. I lost the little foot pod to my Nike+ and I STILL haven’t replaced it… even though I work six blocks from the Apple Store!

    How did you lose that? Isn’t it under the sole? I feel like there’s a story there.

  19. Wow! That is quite the ordeal. I’m not sure which part of this is the most awe-inspiring: the fact that it sounds like you drove to hell and back in order to get this gizmo thingy fixed/replaced or the fact that you got a brand new one instead of a crappy repair job. On both counts, bravo!

  20. Damn, that was exhausting.

  21. Posted by Jess on April 8, 2008 at 1:54 pm

    I was all like “Dude, that sucks.” And then, “Dude, that’s awesome that you got it fixed.”

    I went to my gym today and then came home and had leftover pizza. Mmmm, pizza!

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