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Adventures in computer buying and the art of patience


Like the able grasshopper of ancient Samurai-era Japan, getting myself back online took skill, determination, persistance, and plenty of patience. Fortunately, it didn’t involve the use of any swords. Almost, but not quite.

(By the way, check this video out from National Geographic about a Chinese sword maker who uses human bones in the forging process.)

As you may or may not know, my ancient computer went kaput ten days ago. Stupid virus took out my windows registry. It was a sad moment as that machine had been with me for six years, through thick and thin, grad school, over 500 blog posts, and one or two excusions into the deepest, darkest dungeons of cyberspace.

(Not that one of those excursions caused me to download the virus. Nope. No way. Not at all.)

Unfortunately, as there is no cash for clunkers program for computers, I had to scrounge up a few hundred thousand pennies for buying a new machine. Something I had not planned for following my sojourn to Memphis only a month ago. Not helping matters was the fact that someone slimy scoundrel stole some money from me via a fraudulent transaction in Surprise, Arizona.

(Yup. I caught a computer virus and was a victim of bank fraud in the same week. How very 21st century of me.)

So after laboriously counting the nickels, dimes, and a few quarters I did have and cancelling all my cards, I went to the ol’ Best Buy to check out their wares and find a laptop. Althought not intending to buy, I brought the Blackberry and seriously reviewed every single laptop they had. At first I wasn’t too impressed, both with the selection and the service. I’m not a big salesperson person, and I hate when I see several salesfolks led customers to the same item. It makes it seem like they are pushing something they are trying to get rid of.

Frustrated, I left computer-less.

The next day I went back, once again ready to buy at Best Buy. This time I brought my checkbook, since of course my cards were no good. After once again going through the options, I settled on an HP. I strolled on up to the cashier, wrote the check, and lo and behold, my check was no good. Apparently, my check fit the profile of a fraudulent check. I think that’s irony.

So I left without a computer for the second day.

Day three, I was intent on buying a new computer, problems be damned. As Puffy sang, can’t nothing hold me down. For the third time, I went to Best Buy around 1pm. Unfortunately, they were sold out of my machine. By this time, I didn’t care if I had to drive to Miami to get this computer, no deity was going to stop me from buying the computer I wanted.

After asking where I can buy the computer of my dreams, I had to drive nearly 30 minutes to the next closest Best Buy. Supposedly, they had eight of my computer left. Of course, when I got there, they had only two. Two of my dream machines, with one little catch: they were both already tinkered with by the Geek Squad and would cost an additional 70 bucks. At this point, I didn’t care.

I walked out with my computer, finally happy.

Then I discovered it didn’t come with an AC adapter.



2 comments on Adventures in computer buying and the art of patience

  1. I bought my laptop at Best Buy nearly four years ago and haven't had any problems with it yet (knock on wood), but you're definitely not the only person I've heard of who had a difficult buying experience there. In fact, one of the local radio guys had a problem with the power cord, I believe it was; you better believe THAT got mentioned on the air.

  2. I wanted to leave people hanging, but I did eventually get the power cord. It just three trips to the Best Buy 45 minutes from my apartment. But so far, so good.

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