Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Record Lowe's

I can pretty much tolerate shopping. Sometimes I even enjoy it. I like those home decorating shops -- Restoration Hardware, Pottery Barn, etc. And when I am feeling very flush, I enjoy cruising for sweaters. But, otherwise, shopping is often an irritant. It is NEVER more irritating than when I have to enter a Lowe's. I assume there are Lowe's stores across the country, but if I need to explain -- BIG box hardware store. I cannot really call Lowe's a store. Nothing the size of the denounced planet Pluto could be called a store. Certainly not a "Shoppe."

Four out of the four last business days I have been to Lowe's. Heaven help me.

Last Wednesday, I went in for a couple extra copies of my bathroom paint sample to give to the contractors. I also decided to pick up some Velcro while I was there. Kind of like finding a needle in a haystack. I happened to ask a clerk while I was looking in aisle 39. Eighteen aisles later, with a dramatic flourish, he revealed the Velcro display. Mission accomplished? Not yet. We can no longer have PEOPLE manning the checkout stands. No, we gotta do it ourselves. All the clerks are needed to guide people among the 112 aisles and dramatically display their exploring skills when the needed product is located. I approached the do-it-yourself checkout with my usual trepidation. I had only one item to pay for, so no bag was necessary. However, I had the audacity to touch the proferred bag. The machine demanded I stand there until a clerk came to assist. No clerk came. I went to the next do-it-yourself checkout. This time I successfully pressed the button that stated no bag was necessary. My purchase totaled $7.30. I feed in a 20 dollar bill. What do you think came out for change. Seventy cents. The machine made a hideous noise, then the screen claimed that it had just returned 12 dollars to me. It did not. A clerk, seeing my facial color had changed, came to my rescue. She did not rescue my 12 dollars. Another clerk was summoned. Eight minutes later, my money was returned and I left the store, vowing to never again return.

It was Thursday morning when my sewing machine started making funny noises and chewing up thread. I had broken another needle, which I promptly replaced, and went on sewing. Didn't work very well. I cleaned the bobbin race, I rethreaded, I did a number of other things, to no avail. I did it all again. Removing the plate over the bobbin for the 6th time, I discovered that the last broken needle had caused a teeny bit of metal to stick out, giving the bobbin thread a place to catch. Well, I could fix this simply. I would look for a narrow metal file to remove this bit of metal. No file on the tool table. Would a fingernail file work? Don't have any. Should I go to the drugstore to get a nail file, only to return home and find out it wouldn't work? Best just to go on to Lowe's and get a metal file. After being guided throughout the store, files were located. A pack of five cost $17. Everybody needs a pack of oddly-shaped metals files, don't they? Well, I just might, so I bought 'em at a human-operated checkout. Got home too late in the afternoon to actually have time to use 'em.

On Friday morning, my contractor asked if the paint color had been selected. I proudly said yes, and held forth the paint chip. He did not take it from me. He stated that it would cost much more for him to take the time to go to Lowe's. One of those time and materials jobs. Well, I would just have to go to Lowe's and buy the paint myself. But what about that metal plate sewing machine issue. I would just take the plate with me, stop at the grocery store (had to do that anyway, lots of studio time being completed here, right), get a nail file, try it out in the car. Well, the simple nail file worked, so I got to return the $17 files. Paint purchased through a human-operated checkout.

On Monday, my contractor says he will be ready for the trim paint on Tuesday. I know we've got that. The hubby told me so. Spent all morning in my dusty, crusty, basement pulling out old paint cans, only to find out we've got no trim paint. Damn. After a few curses, I grab my keys and head out to Lowe's. Can't get there. Car won't start. Hey, there's another car in my garage. Out to Lowe's. Ask for white trim paint. Do I want the white or the ultra-white? I whimpered that I wasn't prepared to make that decision. The friendly clerk helped me and I paid my money to a human and staggered out to the car.

Thanks for putting up with this information. I know it wasn't rewarding for you. It wasn't rewarding for me. I am now going to go have a look at my "white" paint. I didn't go for ultra-white. Will I regret it? Such is life. I do wish I had purchased those nifty hooks I saw in Lowe's last Wednesday. I also have yet to pick out towel bars, too. Hmmmm.


paula said...

are you kidding? this was the most entertaining post! it exhausted me but I loved it.
reminds me why i go to mom and pop stores even though half the time they don't have what i need.

Cathy Kleeman said...

Tag, you're it:

Kim - I used the SAQA Ring list to find artists new to me. I hate those self checkout aisles at Lowes, too!
The rules are as follows:
1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself.
4. Tag six people at the end of your post.
5. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know your entry is up.