Friday at lunch, my microwave died while warming my lunch. It runs fine, but my food remains frozen. Shucky darn. So I measure the space and resolve to buy a new one after work. The space is pretty small and oddly shaped.
5:30 rolls around and I'm off to Lowes. I really liked the Lowes in Oregon by my house so that's my first choice. Plus they have over 100 microwaves on their web site. Cool. I head up to the new Lowes on Auto Mall Prkwy in Fremont. They have about 8 different microwaves in stock. Pretty much basic stuff. About half are too big and half are too small. None of them tickle my fancy so I move on. Also, I'm starting to regret not bringing a tape measure as some brands don't mark the boxes very well.
I head up to the Sears at Mowry and things take a turn for the surreal. The small microwaves are far from the big microwaves. The big ones are by the ovens, which seems logical. I look and look and finally just about to leave, the vinyl siding salesman tells me the small microwaves are over by the vacuum cleaners and washing machines. I thank him and move on. THey have 16 microwaves. Most are an acceptable size but most are kinda chintzy. At least Sears marks the size on most, but not all, the price tags. Eventually I decide which one I want. No salesman has pestered me the whole time so I wander off to find one. There's one in the next aisle. I flag him down and announce my intentions to purchase one of their fine products.
"Oh, no you need whatsername, I sell washers and vacuums." He looks around and sees the girl helping someone with a sewing machine. He tells me to wait for her to finish. I wait for about 10 minutes for her to finish. Eventually I get frustrated and start asking other salesmen to take my money. Quite literally "I want to buy a microwave, will you take my money?" Nope. Nope. Nope. Not even the vinyl siding guy will sell me a microwave. He does offer to clad my unit of my apartment building in weather resistant plastic though. I'm about to walk when whatshername emerges. I tell her I want to buy a microwave.
"Oh I'm going on my break, can you wait a while?"
"Is there anybody else here that can sell me a microwave?"
"No just me. If you wait here I'll be back in a few."
I say "not interested" and walk off. She smiles at me like she didn't care and goes on her break. I leave. WTF?
I'm back on the freeway heading home and I remember Best Buy has an ample appliance section so I head over to McCarthy Ranch. I walk in and again find big microwaves with the stoves. There's an aisle sign that says Microwaves but that aisle is filled with vacuum cleaners. A cold shiver of deja vu goes down my spine. There's a bunch of small microwaves stacked on top of the aisle in boxes. I can't read the labels though. I find a salesman and ask "Do you have any small microwaves that aren't 20 feet off the ground?" He laughs and shows me where they actually are, 2 aisles over from the vacuum cleaners. There's probably 30 microwaves here tons of brands and new high tech toys. I'm all over all the shiny fancy new toys.
Unfortunately none of them have dimensions listed. I ask the guy if he knows and he runs off and comes back with a tape measure. Cool! We measure a bunch of microwaves and I quickly settle on one much nicer than anything at the other stores. All sorts of cool technology and sensors and programs. The salesman even gets a forklift and fetches a new one from the stack above the floor sucking doom machines. I'm so impressed I tell the salesman and another salesman that was helping out the story about Sears. He tells me Best Buy doesn't pay on commission. It strikes me as odd that someone who gets paid by the sale would ignore me and two guys who shouldn't give a darn if I buy something or not bend over backwards to help me out. I thank them both for a job well done and head out. I'm mildly annoyed by the cashier trying to push an extended warranty though. I tell him, "It's a microwave. If it breaks I'll throw it away and buy a new one."
Anyway, Best Buy just earned future business, and Sears just lost a lot of future business.
I just bought a panasonic NN-T775SF BTW