Monthly Archives: March 2007

Customer Service Woes

Last weekend, I bought a pair of shoes. They felt terrible once I wore them for more than 10 minutes, so terrible I was afraid that wearing them would cause injury. So, I went to a different store today to buy some new shoes, and got some that I hope I’ll like. Then, I went to return the old shoes. But, because I had worn them outside, I was unable to return them. And what followed was just terrible. I finally accepted a $90 store credit just so I could get out of there…my least favorite thing about myself is that when I get very angry, I cry. Which makes me look weak. So, I had to leave so I wouldn’t cry.

But, I came home and wrote a letter to the owners. And now I’m posting that letter. Would you be angry?

Dear Eli & Sean,

I just had one of the worst customer service experiences of my life in your NE Fremont store.

Last Saturday, I purchased a pair of shoes (and a map of Forest Park that the salesperson told me also contained Washington Park – and it doesn’t) in your NE Fremont store.

I wore the shoes on Monday, and by the time I’d finished my run, my feet were in a tremendous amount of pain – I felt as though there were hot knives stabbing through my arches. Between the painful fit and the map that didn’t have the one thing that I wanted, I was terribly unhappy with my experience – so I attempted to return my purchase today. The return of the map went seamlessly.

I was not so lucky with the shoe return. I was told that because I’d worn them outside, I could not get my money back. His exact words were, “Look what you’ve done to these shoes. How can you expect us to take them back now?” If I’d worn them all week, or through some rivers, or in a mud pit, maybe his words would have been justified. However, since it was one run (and I even stayed off the trails and ran on roads so they wouldn’t get as dirty), I felt that was a little harsh. When I protested that I’d not known that I couldn’t wear them outside – no one told me, the man I spoke with said that he’s not surprised that I wasn’t told – because they don’t tell people that. He said that since most people run outside, they don’t tell people they CAN’T run outside if they wish to return their shoes. That confused me a bit – does that mean that your salespeople are deliberately leaving out information so that customers cannot take advantage of your return policy?

The man kept protesting that the return policy is more than fair – and is standard for all shoe stores. But, since it’s not actually a RETURN policy, but an exchange policy, I don’t see how it’s fair. I purchased a pair of shoes at Fit Right, and specifically inquired about outside wear (now that I know that trick) and was told that as long as it’s within 30 days, they don’t care if I wear them outside – they’re more concerned about making sure I’m happy. I’m sure I don’t need to mention REI’s return policy….

Even though I’m very disgusted with your non-existent return policy, I finally agreed to a store credit, but the man kept lecturing me. He told me that Foot Traffic was a great store and disparaged my choice of shoe from Fit Right (a Fila) – a shoe that I would have happily exchanged my shoes for if only you carried it.

The original fitting was amateurish at best – something I know now that I’ve had a vastly superior experience at Fit Right – and your customer service at the point of return was terrible. I have never been this upset and angry after an attempted return – and am appalled that your “return” policy is not. At one point, when I firmly (and, I’m willing to admit, maybe a bit rudely by this time) said that I wasn’t interested in hearing any more about how wonderful your store was because I just wanted my credit so I could leave, the man I was speaking to said, “Well, a little education can go a long ways.”

I would agree with that statement, and suggest that you educate your sales people on how to fit shoes properly and how to offer good customer service to a dissatisfied customer – because going into the store, I was only mildly unhappy. Now, I have a $90 store credit that I don’t want, and a lot of running friends that I’m going to tell about it. I have never been so disappointed in a store that I had previously heard good things about.



I’m certain I have interesting weekend plans, or that something interesting has happened to me last night or perhaps today….but for the life of me, the only thing I can think of is that I got all my money back from the bank debacle and an apology from Sarah at the bank. So – that’s good, then.

I did an abbreviated run today – only two miles. My shoes are in such bad shape that it hurts, hurts, hurts my feet to run. I’m going to take the new evil running shoes back tomorrow and hopefully get some that actually take my pronation and arch issues into account (something I thought was happening last time) – because if I keep running in such crappy shoes, I’m going to get an injury – and no one wants that.

I’m working on my running mix – and got so many awesome suggestions. I’m hoping to cajole a couple of mixed CDs out of Brad & Kris. I need to check my at home CD collection first, though, to see what I do and don’t have.

Drinks tonight….then maybe some Greek food. Tomorrow, no real plans – I’ll probably try to finish up last weekend’s cleaning extravaganza. Sunday, I’m running another 5K…because I’m crazy like that.

So – you know – moderately busy πŸ™‚

Next weekend, however, our good friends Sue & Alan are going to be in town so that’s very exciting! YAY! I just wish that we were going to be in the house already…then we’d have a place for them to stay. Ah, well – I’m sure we’ll be all moved in before we even know what happens (21 days…).

Stupid Banks

About three months ago, I was at my bank to get a cashier’s check to pay for my car repairs. At that time, the teller was all like, “hey! your account is eligible for an upgrade since you have direct deposit, would you like this upgrade? it’s free. it will take five minutes.” and I was all, “okay.”

So – I got the upgrade, and the only benefit to this free upgrade is automatic overdraft protection. My checking account is now protected from overdrafts by my available savings account balance. So, imagine my surprise when I logged into my account this morning (I check every day) and see that my account is overdrawn $144. That is odd, because I don’t have anything outstanding except a $78 check. And I have a couple of hundred dollars in my savings. Oh look, my savings still has a couple of hundred dollars in it. And the $144 negative number? Because in addition to the $78 check, I have $68 of overdraft fees.

So, correct me if I’m wrong, but shouldn’t my bank have initiated an automatic transfer of the amount I was short to cover the check? Since those funds were available. And because I signed forms and shit saying I wanted it all set up.

Stupid banks. They better give me my money back, or I will go to my local branch and have a few words with Sarah who keeps calling me now (we had such a good chat in January about overdraft protection) to convince me that I want even more protection with a line of credit (which I don’t – especially since even the simple protections don’t seem to work).


Double porn today….

First – the brown sandals that I ended up getting, after much debate….I got them from Shoebuy, because they have free shipping both ways AND a 110% price guarantee…but I found them cheaper at Amazon. SO – I did the 110% price guarantee and ended up getting about $20 back, plus free shipping. So – ended up being cheaper than Amazon after all. So – woo!

Nicole Jaleesa

And the 2nd – much more porny…because I cannot afford them πŸ™‚

Kate Spade giselle

They are quite pretty. And not Louboutin expensive. But, expensive enough to dissuade me from purchase!

I ran again today – and definitely need new running shoes. I’d purchased a pair of (very pretty) running shoes on Saturday, but they are not working at all…my arches ache after less than 10 minutes just walking – so I’m not about to wear them running. I ran in my old shoes, but they are on their last legs (soles?), too – and running in shoes that make you hurt seems stupid and dangerous.

So – happy porn day, everyone! Don’t forget to share your new porn…or, if you’re so inclined, workout music (and thanks everyone who’s already offered up suggestions – I’ll let you know the final mix when it’s done).

musical advice

I am trying to put together a great running mix on my iPod and was wondering – what songs get your blood pumping? I want about 90 minutes of music….and I’ll give anything a shot at least once. I’m not a big fan of most hip-hop, but anything else would be welcome. As a view into my eclectic musical nature, when I do a Party Mix on iTunes, the top 10 are Loretta Lynn, Magnetic Fields, Iron & Wine, Cake, Queen, Morphine, Blondie, Mos Def, Stuart Davis and Green Day.