I’m going to start this day with a reflection on RadioShack. I hate RadioShack with a hatered that is rarely witnessed by many who know me. If someone was to udder words like crap, shit, stink pile, poo, junk, dump, pewtrid, funk or sounds like blap, ploop, or shlllapsspspsp, the first image in my head would be the RadioShack sign. Why I feel this way is primarely because of a Christmas present I recieved in 1985. It was a silver Ferarri remote controlled car and it was the most spectacular thing I had ever seen. You can tell by weight and size of a wrapped gift that it has to be cool. Rectangular packages leave out the possibility of clothes or books so it was kept for last to unwrap and to a seven year old it was not a disapointment
I could hardly wait to pull that thing from the box, put in the 6 D baterries and tear up the driveway with the Italian dream machine. But little did I know it was bought from the one store that sells only electronic dog shit. When the car was prepped and charged and I was dressed for the inclimate, damp day outside, it was time to test drive.
I remember approximatly ten full minutes of remote control fun and then it came to rest, rolling out of control against the garage door. With a mechanical inclination of a seven year old I feverishly banged the remote. There had to be a simple answer to why the car is not responding! So with mouth agape, arms limp and a slouching stride I walked to the disabled car and examined the undercarriage. I can’t remember what I was looking for but I had a gut feeling it was bad. I needed to take to Mr. Fix-it. You know…Dad.
With careful inspection my father was too perplexed with why the car decided to shit the bed so soon. He expected it to last at least a week. He turned to the one avenue I would never and that is the instruction sheet. This led to my worst fears and that was the long list of what the car could not drive on and if you own it then the joke was on you. Turns out the car could not operate on pavement, lanolium, carpet, grass, dirt or anything else besides a wooden track. Dad looked at me with sympathy and we decided to bring it back to RadioShit on the most dreaded boxing day to see if there was a way to return the car. This is the beginning of my hatered towards RadioShack. But I was cool for now. I had other toys to break.
So we got up early and took off to Perimeter mall. My memory is fuzzy because I probably blocked out most of that day but I’m sure it was a mad house. With the car back in the original box my Dad and I walked into the RadioShack store to stand in line behind other equally pissed off customers. He thought this was a great platform for me, as a seven year old, to gain some real adult expirience and ask for a Ferarri exchange by myself. Now that I think about it he probably was banking on a cuteness factor to make the exchange less painful. Either way, cuteness or life lesson, it backfired and the bitch clerk took one look at me and decided to make me an example.
Now to this day I am positive that all RadioShack emloyees ar given a training handbook full of Nazi propaganda. They take great joy in selling little kids shit for Christmas presents, have them go through the pains of the present breaking and forcing them to come back to the store to recieve an ass chewing. Why I believe this? It only makes sense to me because it happened to me. The snot, chick employee assessed the situation before her and in a loud voice said, “Let me guess, you didn’t read the instuctions and now you want a new one?”
I remember my ears turning hot and humiliation set in. With a scornful look she snatched the box out of my arms and went to the “employee only” section. I looked for my Dad but he was standing by the cassette players lost in geek world. Before Icould go to him for protection the “employee only” door kicked open and the female Gerbles waddeled her way to the counter. She wasn’t done with her power talk. Not by a long shot.
“I am going to let you exchange this but I had better not see you back here whining about how it is broken.” I hope she felt good having a power trip on a seven year old. Maybe it was the fact she had to work on the holidays or I was customer number 3,000 with an exchange but I feel she saw me as an outlet for her shitty RadioShack customer service skill.
Walking out the store my Dad peeled away from HiFi extacy and saw that mission was accomplished. I was still in shock from having my ass handed to me. We made it to about the parking lot before I broke down in tears. I was a protected kid growing up. My folks never yelled at me and my elementary school was something from Nickelodeon so getting chewed out by a stranger really shook me up. It must have because I am writing about it 22 years later. Dad didn’t really think that much about it. We got into the car and went to Ihop for “feel better pancakes.”
By the time we got home the feelings of shame and embarasment subsided and the excitement of a new remote Ferarri took center stage. But when I took the box from the bag the bitch from the store had salt for me wounds. Istead of a shiny ass kicking ass kicker sports car I got a remote controled pickup truck. That’s all I’m going to say about that.
I have not been to a RadioShack since. I refuse to shop there and I even tell others to boycott the company. My visceral hatered towards RadioShack will never be squelched and everytime a new store opens a puppy dies. So up yours RadioShack. Up yours.