My recent tech saga, The Cat Vomit Chronicle, appears to have come out with a rather happy ending after all. This is NOT a sponsored post, not one cat-scratched word of it. But every word of it is true.
Some of you may remember my griping in an earlier post about my cat spitting out kibble on my Apple MacBook Air keyboard. I came down with a horrific cold/flu but and the week after I returned from the vacation at my daughter’s home in the North Country. I needed the vacation after attending the Chicago BlogHer conference where my iPad was pick-pocketed by well-organized thugs. Needless to say, I was not happy about this. My Siamese cat getting crushed kibble under a key I needed to use log in to the computer was the Pièce de résistance of a tragic few weeks. Or so I thought. But I managed to learn a couple things from these events.
It can always get worse.
I had purchased the accidental damage coverage for the MacBook Air when I purchased it from Best Buy as an open box item. That was good. I did not read the fine print and I over-shared with the nice young man at the counter who seemed intelligent. When am I ever going to learn to quit giving people the benefit of the doubt?Actually, the clerk saved me some money by suggesting I just purchase a portable backup drive for $65 rather than the $85 it would cost me to have them do data recovery since we knew the computer hadn’t lost any data after having hooked up an external keyboard and accessing files.
As the nice young man (Geesh am I really old enough to be using this phrase?) was writing up the paperwork associated with this repair I did not supervise what he was writing. Mistake. I thought he would write something like “keys sticking” not “cat vomit” on the form. I really expected him to write what was wrong, not how it got that way. I mean it wasn’t liquid vomit. It was partially chewed kibble dropped on my keyboard by a cat who was annoyed with me. And I had explained that to him, and that the internal thing-a-ma-jigs were working just fine if you hooked up an external keyboard. There was just a couple tiny pieces of kibble under a couple of keys that I couldn’t get out.
But early this week I got a call from the tech section at Best Buy, and “could I please come in and talk to the store manager?” Ut oh. The repair people, whoever and wherever they are, refused repair because of bodily fluids. There is a bodily fluids clause in the fine print. I went to the store and talked to the manager. The manager on duty at the time was a reasonable man. Thank you Goddess! I explained that there were no fluids in the mouthful of kibble that was ejected by my cat. He understood that if there had been fluids as in bodily fluids that the internal thing-a-ma-jiggy drive would have shorted out or be non-functional. But that wasn’t the case everything worked well except for a couple keys.
He had a clerk re-write the repair order and explain that the original receiving clerk mis-wrote the ticket.
Three days later I got a call that “they” had deemed the computer irreparable. The store was authorized to refund the purchase price of the MacBook Air.
Not all big box stores are evil.
I have a good Best Buy store near my house. One of the reasons I like purchasing from Best Buy rather than the Apple Store is that I can get to the counter without feeling like I’m at a rave. The packed body to body experience that is our Apple Store at the shishi La Encantada Mall is just too much of a “line up for a cool experience” place for me. Apple Stores do not have open box items either. I like returns. I buy my cars as certified used cars with less than 10,000 miles on them whenever possible. I like to buy computers the the same way. Knocking a few hundred bucks off a major purchase is always good in my book.
I’ve already told you about the manager helping me out by being understanding and re-submitting my laptop for repair.
What I haven’t shared is that the folks at the same store agreed that buying a tablet of any sort would be silly at this time because the new iPad will come out this fall. What I did buy was a Chromebook (which I will review in the post) so that I would have some ability to write and work “on wheels” at a local co-working space while my “real” laptop was in for repairs that would probably take three weeks before I got it back.
When the verdict came in that I would get a refund rather than have my laptop returned to me, I was unsure what I would do. The clerk who was helping me let me know that I was within the time period when I could still return the Chromebook. So I had a little bit more money (credit actually) to work with in deciding what kind of a replacement laptop I could get.
This takes me through the trials and tribulations part of this story, so the next post will cover what I learned about laptops and web access devices over the course of the summer.
Maggie S. says
Very interesting, given my recent experience with Best Buy and a defective computer. Hmm.
Nancy Hill says
So what was your experience? I think with any specific location the manager and how staff are trained and empowered are the critical factors.