Salesmen suck

I went out and bought my husband a new television recently. Sounds like a simple enough exercise, right? Well, you don’t live on an island.

Up until now, we have only had 1 televison in the house, so it often turned into a bun fight when favourite shows were on at the same time. My husband was getting sick of watching his movies on his laptop, and often mentioned it in a loud voice whenever my television programs were on as he was passing through the loungeroom.

I decided that I would get him a television for the bedroom that could play movies from a USB stick. That way, I’d get to watch my shows in peace. It was a good plan

I took my USB stick loaded with movies with me to the store to test it out on some of the display stock, but the salesman wasn’t too keen on me sticking my potentially corrupted USB stick into the port of one of his televisions. He assured me that he knew which television would play my movies, and which would not.

I eyed the Sony in the corner, but he steered me away from that  to the store’s generic model and told me that it would definitely play whatever movie I wanted it to. I asked him if he had seen this television actually play movies in this fashion, and he said that he hadn’t, but showed me a printout that gave the specs as being movie player compliant. As the price was right, I decided to bite the bullet and lug the oversized box back to the island.

Getting it back to the island involved transporting it in my car, getting from the car to the ferry, getting it on the ferry, getting it off the ferry and into the other car  parked near the ferry on the other side, and finally getting it home. I decided to employ the skills of my son, much to his disgust. We almost lost it in the water before we even made it to the island when my son overbalanced getting onto the ferry.

We finally got it in the front door and we tripped over the dog on the way into the bedroom, sending us and the television sliding towards the floor. Fortunately the television landed on the lounge. I wasn’t so lucky and landed on the coffee table beside the lounge. My son landed on the floor, just missing the dog.

I limped into the bedroom to clear off the chest of drawers and take the television out of the box.

After much swearing, tugging, and screwing in the base, we finally got it started. I tuned it in and stuck the USB stick in.

It didn’t work.

The files were not compatible with the system. Or so it announced on the screen. I tried avi extensions, I tried mp4s, I even tried mov extensions. Nothing. The television was a dud, and I would have to take it back.

I rang the store and told them of the situation. I spoke to one salesman, who sounded surprised that it didn’t work. He asked me if I was sure.  I rattled off all of the extensions it wouldn’t play, and he shut up. I finally got to talk to the salesman that had  sold it to me. After he apologised profusely, he asked me if I wanted to buy a media player to go with the television so that it would work. I told him I already had a media player hooked up to the main television, and that this was not the object of the exercise. He asked me if I could bring it back today. I asked him if he remembered what I told him about where I lived. He said that I had a week to bring it back and replace it with another one, but he wasn’t sure which one would play from USB. He was telling me this now?

I was pissed off, that was for sure. I had gone to a lot of trouble so that my husband could enjoy his many movies simply by transferring them from his hard drive to his USB stick.

I decided to bring out the big guns and called my husband, who was in the middle of the ocean.

He called the store the next day from the ship and got me another, better television replacement at a discount price, an in-house demonstration of the movies being played from USB, plus a free 2 year warranty. He is a tough negotiator when he’s had a few weeks of rough seas and rough jobs. I was impressed.

The next day saw me and my son lugging the first television back to the store to get the second television. I took my USB stick again. The store manager asked me to bring it along to demonstrate that this other television would play my movies. He didn’t seem too worried about any ‘bugs.’

The television in question? The Sony sitting in the corner that I had wanted to buy in the first place.


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