Saturday, 13 November 2010

Retail Rage

I will be the first to admit that I am not a technical person.

Those around me will also be quick to agree. If they're ever heard the sharp in take of breath and witnessed a blank monitor, as I repeatedly bang my head on the desk, the recommended course of action is to evade. Maybe head out for an impromptu meeting, until the cloud of muttered curses passes.

So when, during the course of this blog evolution, it became apparent that one PC would not suffice our family of two we set about getting me hooked up with my own. It would not need to be powerful- lets face it the content of this blog is hardly highly demanding in terms of its technical requirements*. However it would need to be capable of dealing with a reasonable amount of imagery (for the blog), word style documents (for the blog) and accessing the Internet (for the blog). It would also be ideal if it could be small in size and lightweight (not blog specific, more aspiring writer specific). Regardless, this PC was clearly not going to require a high degree of spec.

Don't worry I am not about to launch into a sales pitch however I do love my new toy.

The process of acquiring said toy was not a straight forward one. It should have been. However it was filled with frustration and boughts of retailer rage. We, husband and I, agreed the spec before the visit to a hig street computer shop.

We went, we looked and we compared. I had my heart set on a pretty little red number with a 13 inch screen. The problems this would present should have been apparent when we looked to see what the available cases were like. There were none. They were either too big or two small, none the right size. This should have acted as a sign of things to come.

Not put off by this I was keen to take possession of this pretty little red number. So we set about trying to track down a sales person. This was not hard to do, we foolishly thought, having been approached at least 3 times in the space of 15 minutes. However when we turned around not one purple shirt could be seen. It was meerkat-esque the way they disappeared, sensing the pressure of having to enter the sale process they vanished into their various burrows. It appeared they were happy to give the suggestion of being attentive and available however when the moment presents itself they crumble and flee.

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One poor meerkat wasn't quite quick enough and being the "patient" shopper I am I grabbed his attention with an assertive "Excuse Me"- as he tried desperately to scuttle past avoiding my eye contact.


The charm was back on, hoping in vein that I was going to ask where the customer toilets were presumably.

"We'd like to buy this one, please" I point happily to my shiny little red number.

"I'll just get someone for you" and he ran like a man possessed into the Back Room.

Not to reappear in the next 5 minutes with someone in tow, but to come back out looking more nervous than ever. Clearly the burrow he had dived into wasn't yielding any brave meerkats specialising in PC sales.

He walked purposefully to the other end of the store and returned dragging a rather pathetic looking PC specialist meerkat before diving back into a near by burrow, not to be seen again.

As I said this should have been straight forward as we knew what we wanted (or rather I needed). And in terms of set up I had married a man who would be able to deal with all and any aspects of software installation that might arise during the course of my relationship with this toy. Certainly more than I could cope with!

"So, do you know what you're after then?" Him, looking directly at my Husband.

Slightly annoyed, I took a deep breath, pointed and said "This is the one, please Sean" I say nice and slowly reading his name badge.

"Ah" he says.

I note the raised eye brows and softening of his tone of voice.

I have clearly presented a problem. He is going to have to change tack as is clearly not dealing with the man but the small-lady-brained woman.

"O.K then, do you know what it does?" in an ever slower and more gentle tones of voice

"Yes" me, with about 3 seconds of patience left . . .

"What is it you need it to do?"

As if this were some kind of test!! Should I fail it then he would not be in a position to take money from us in some strange act of retail responsibility. This I understand with knives and alcohol etc. to under age children. But a PC to a couple in their late 20's?!!

"I need it to access the Internet, basics word documentation, ability to cope with imagery. Nothing significantly technical or high spec. Thank You"

Me, now down to about 2 seconds of patience remaining . . .toying with the idea of telling him I was planning on hacking into various government computers and banks or accessing indecent images.

"Right, well then lets see what we have in stock shall we"

Shoulders up to my ears and steam pouring out of them. I throw a look at my Husband. Who is slightly amused at this exchange of patronising conversation, where I have tried to out-patronise a sales man and failed. As he (meerkat not Husband) has absolutely maintained his Little Lady attitude throughout the course of this conversation.

We have been in the shop for about 20 minutes before getting to the point of confirming an available machine. It's incredibly warm and we are now being subjected to the sales pitch of insurance and
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software etc. Which is now being delivered to my superior-man-brained husband rather than the feeble-little-lady-brained wife. Presumably he felt that this was going to be far too technical for me to cope with all together.

The shoe is now on the other foot from my perspective and I am now in a position to find the exchange quite amusing.

My Husband is taking on the look of a seriously angry snake ready to gobble up this stupid, insulting and patronising meerkat, who is rapidly taking his last second of patience.

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We eventually get the PC home only to be faced with the blue screen of death.


It is rapidly returned to another store and exchanged for a sexy glossy, black, 10 inch screened machine which is standing up to the test of my little blogisphere adventure.

Although the thoughts of having some kind of magical glitter float its way through the pages of this blog have crossed my mind.

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