The Chronicles Of The Chair

A couple weeks ago, I ordered a chair for my daughter’s desk for COVID-schooling – the at-home, online stuff. That should have been something simple. We went to a store, masked, of course… which 6-months ago would have sounded like we were robbing the place. Picked out the chair. They were out of stock and ordered it for us. This was a Saturday. Delivery date: the following Tuesday. This was a month and a bit ago. No chair. So what happened?

We were told that UPS was having delays due to COVID. I get that. The USPS the same way. I understand. But Tuesday came and went. Then another Tuesday came and went. So I decided to call the company and find out what’s up.

First off, I got an automated computer system. This was remarkably unhelpful. I entered the invoice number and it tried to tell me the UPS tracking number. Computer voices should not do tracking numbers. The voice sounded like it was saying the same thing over and over. Lots of rhyming letters that were indecipherable from each other. Why can’t it do the alphabet thing alpha bravo november one seven six… or whatever it is? Granted, most people don’t know that alphabet – or improvise some of it.

I know, in the past, I have actually played with people a bit and given thinks like: the tracking number is pneumonia, knowledge, gnome, Gnostic, psalm, honest, homage, philistine, psychic, wrinkle, knob, whole, psoriasis. If you don’t realize how funny that is, say them out loud and that might help. If you’re still lost, there’s not much I can do for you
Anyway, I ended up calling the store itself to find out what’s up. I was told they shipped it weeks ago. Hmmm… Maybe I should call UPS and find out what’s up there. UPS had an automated system so I tried their “online chat” system. Here’s a transcript:

CYRIL G: Hi, My name is CYRIL.I am reviewing your information and I will be with you in a moment.

CYRIL G: Nice to meet you. I already have your tracking number here and just a moment while I check it. I’ll be right with you.

CYRIL G: Thanks for waiting. It appears that we only received the creation of the label from the sender on 8/16 and we’re still waiting for the physical package from them. It would still depend with the sender Office Depot as to when they will schedule a pickup for it or if they will tender it to a UPS location. In this case, please contact the sender for further assistance and verification if the package is still at their warehouse or location.

Me: They say they gave it to you on the 16th

Me: According to Office Depot it has been picked up and is on it’s way. You, on the other hand, say you never got it. So which is it?

Me: Sounds like the two of you need to talk to each other better.

CYRIL G: I agree with you on that point. If the sender claims that this has been shipped out on time, then this should have been delivered already. Next step is to file a claim investigation however, the claim must be initiated by the sender as they are the party that can provide necessary details as to how, from where and when they tendered the package to UPS.

CYRIL G: For now, please contact the sender and ask them to fle a claim with UPS for further resolution

Me: So them telling me to contact you about this… waste of time?

CYRIL G: I’m sorry you have to go through with this. The sender already knows that are the next step that needs to be done once they’ve been informed that a claim investigation is already required for us to further research for the package

Me: And, of course, you calling them to say “what happened with this package” would be too convenient? Yeah… why not make the customer that has been waiting for his chair to arrive a middle man for your lack of communicative skills? Gotcha.

CYRIL G: We also wouldn’t want to make things harder for you. We will sort this out with the shipper as soon as they file a claim investigation from their end.

Me: Did you really read why you just typed? You don’t want to make things harder by making things harder. You can’t be bothered to find out why you two aren’t talking to each other properly?

Me: I’m not your marriage counselor.

CYRIL G: Yes I read it and I wish I can do more but we’re unable to contact the sender on your behalf. I understand that this does not meet your needs but we do not have any other alternatives options available from our end.

Me: CONTACT THEM ON YOUR BEHALF! One of you is making the other look bad! I have nothing to do with it!

Me: Fuck it. Cyril, you’re useless.

What I gleaned about this was that the chair had somehow gotten lost between the loading dock and the truck. So, somewhere, there is a box, with a chair in it, magically floating over a loading dock and, for some reason, no one has thought to question why it’s there.

Meanwhile, after several phone calls to corporate offices, they decided to refund my money. It will be appearing in my account within two to three business days. But wait… we’re not done yet. Two to three business days was two to three weeks ago. The money was never refunded. So, what happened when I called the store itself to find out what’s up? I now have to bring the receipt into the store for the refund as corporate is slowed by the virus. If I pay them, it moves instantly. If it’s coming back, two to three days. Ah, hell. That’s another who blog entry and I’m tired.

** UPDATE **

I went to the store and they gave me the chair which was now, magically, in stock. The manager seemed equally annoyed that this wasn’t taken care of.


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