Monday, December 15, 2014

The Curse of the Bodum French Press

My apologies for being so tardy in announcing my giveaway winner.  Our house has been hit with a sickness.  I love little babies, but I hate their germs.  Anyhow, congratulations to Anne B. who won the clutch purse.  Anne, I'll have it in the mail to you soon.

And now, a Christmas tale.

A few Christmases ago, I ordered a bunch of stuff from Crate and Barrel for Christmas gifts.  This huge box came filled with Christmas goodies.  Being that it was a few weeks before Christmas, I stored the box in a corner unopened.  That is online shopping mistake #1.  When you order something online, always, always, always open the box straight away.  You always want to check and make sure that you have the correct item or that the items aren't broken.

About a week before Christmas, I set out to wrap all of my gifts.  I opened the huge Crate and Barrel box and started pulling out a bunch of gifts.  I got to the bottom of the box and noticed two items that I hadn't ordered.  They were two Bodum french presses.

I was very confused as everything that I had purchased was already taken out of the box.  What were these extra french presses doing in there?  Also, I don't drink a lick of coffee.  I absolutely loathe the stuff so I had no need of a fancy coffee maker.  I immediately called Crate and Barrel.  The conversation with customer service went something like this:

Me: My order number is XXX.  I received everything in my order but also was sent two Bodum french presses that I do not want.
Customer Service: Let me look up your order.  No, there is nothing listed in your order that says you were sent a french press.
Me: Okay.  Except I just opened the box and there were two french presses in the box.
Customer Service: Really?  Are you sure they were in the same box?
Me: Uh…yes…I didn't take them out of another large Crate and Barrel box.
Customer Service: We have no record of sending them to you.
Me: Okay, well I have two of them that you sent me.  Is there a way that I can return them?
Customer Service: You can ship them back to us.
Me: I don't want to pay shipping for two items that I never ordered.  Can you have UPS do a pickup?
Customer Service: No, you will have to pay to send them back.  We will expect to receive them in 5 business days.
Me: What if I don't send them back?
Customer Service: Okay, that's fine too.  But if you didn't pay for them then you can't keep them.
Me: Okay so do you want to pick them up from me?  I just don't think I should have to pay to send them back to you when I never ordered them in the first place.
Customer Service: Well you can either not send them back and keep something you didn't pay for or you can send them back to us.

Leave it to Crate and Barrel's customer service to put me in a moral dilemma.  Do I unwittingly steal the french presses simply because I'm too lazy and cheap to send them back?  The answer to that question is yes.

I never sent them back and always felt bad.  One I gave away as a gift and the other I kept in my apartment because I had no other way of making coffee, and Mike liked to drink coffee.  I think he used it 3 times.  Now we have this french press box in our pantry cupboard that causes me a pang of guilt when I see it sitting there.

Fast forward to last week when I ordered a gift for my niece from Amazon.  I used our Amazon Prime account (which BTW, Amazon Prime sucks) and two days later this rather small box came to our door. I knew it had to be the aforementioned gift because I had not ordered anything else, but the box was so small.  I quickly opened it up because I no longer violate online shopping mistake #1 and gasped as I saw a Bodum French Press staring back at me.  It was like Bob Marley had come for me.

This had to be some sick joke.  I emailed with amazon's customer service and explained the mix-up.  They told me they were very sorry and would send me the item I ordered immediately.

"Okay, thank you," I wrote, "but what do I do with the french press?"

"You can ship it back to us," was their reply.

I still haven't decided what to do.  I definitely don't want another french press giving me guilt from the kitchen cupboards, but I also don't think that I should have to pay to ship something back to a retailer that I did not want in the first place.

What are the odds, though, that this would happen to a person more than once?  I understand that wrong items are shipped all the time, but the SAME wrong item?  This is a Christmas tradition that I could definitely do without.

1 comment:

Grace said...

That is really weird. When I worked in retail customer service we would never expect a customer to pay for shipping us back something that we sent them in error - so that strikes me as so odd that they would expect that, that makes no sense. So even Amazon wanted you to pay to send it back? I would not feel guilty about keeping any of it. It was there mistake, they are a huge corporation and have spent $$$ having machine's pack this stuff, so why should you have to pay for their mistake? It's not like this is some mom and pop shop.