Walk A Mile In Another Store’s Shoes

, , | Right | October 14, 2018

(My dad is a notorious packrat, but my mother has finally convinced him to do some cleaning. I’m visiting them, and he shows me a pair of shoes, still in a box.)

Dad: “I found these when I cleaned out my closet. I bought them three years ago but never wore them. Look: the receipt is still in the box. I’m going to take them back to the store.”

Me: “Um, let me look at the receipt first, Dad.”

(Since I worked in retail for many years, I don’t want my Dad to be “that customer,” so I look at the receipt and see that returns after 30 days will be given a store credit.)

Me: “They won’t give you your money back, Dad. Just a store credit.”

Dad: “That’s okay. I can buy another pair of shoes.”

Me: “All right.”

(We drive over to the shopping center and he stops in front of a shoe store. Puzzled, I look at the receipt.)

Me: “Dad, this isn’t the right shoe store.”

Dad: “Yes, it is. This is where I bought them.”

Me: “Dad, look at the receipt. It says [Shoe Store #1]. This is [Shoe Store #2].”

Dad: “I know; I bought them here!”

(I look at the receipt and see the address does match.)

Me: “I think I know what happened. The [Shoe Store #1] must have been at this location when you bought your shoes, but they closed and this [Shoe Store #2] moved in. Do you remember [Shoe Store #1] being here before?”

Dad: “I don’t know. But this is where I bought those shoes.”

Me: “Yes, I understand that. But you can’t return them here, because it’s no longer [Shoe Store #1]. This is [Shoe Store #2]. They won’t take them back. Let me find out where the closest [Shoe Store #1] is around here and we’ll take them there.”

Dad: “No, they’ll take them back here. I bought them here.”

(He gets out of the car and I reluctantly follow him, trying to reason with him, but he’s not having it. He takes the box and the receipt up to the cashier.)

Dad: “Hi, I’d like to return these shoes.”

Cashier: “All right, let’s take a look…”

(She looks at the receipt and the box, which identify the first shoe store.)

Cashier: “I’m sorry, sir. You didn’t buy these here. We can’t take them back.”

Dad: “Yes, I did. I never wore them, and I still have a receipt.”

Cashier: “I understand, but we are [Shoe Store #2] and you bought these at [Shoe Store #1].”

Me: “I tried to explain this to you, Dad. They can’t take them back here.”

(I finally convinced him to leave. All the while he was complaining about why they wouldn’t take them back when he bought them here. I tried every which way I could think of to explain to him that shops change locations, and that just because he bought something at a certain location it didn’t mean he could take it back there if a different business was there now. At least I got him out before he caused a scene. The shoes, sadly, went right back into his closet.)

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