You Bet Your Ass I’ll Return That

Yesterday my sister-in-law invited us over to watch the Dolphin game and to enjoy her Most Awesomest Clam Chowder Ever. I was asked to bring dessert, and when asked to do so it’s usually a homemade delight of some sort. I was being lazy, though, and decided to stop and pick something up on the way.

Husband and Son waited in the car while I chose two inexpensive but yummy-looking desserts. One was a pre-sliced marble pound cake, guaranteed fresh with a sell by date of October 23rd. It seemed safe…

It was not. It was AWFUL. Pound cake is supposed to be very moist, but this was dry and crumbly. I knew immediately I was going to return it.

My saying so started Husband’s teasing. “You wouldn’t BELIEVE the stuff she returns, ” he announced. Everyone laughed about it, including me, but it got me thinking.

Am I entitled to return the tings I return?

This is the second thing in the last few days I’d said I was returning. There are scallops sitting in my refrigerator now waiting to be returned. I occasionally purchase them at this particular store that sells them for $4.99/lb. I cooked them the day after I bought them, and they smelled terrible. I’ve already called the store and told them I’m returning them, as I knew would not be able to get back right away. Why should I spend $5 for their rancid scallops?

I’ll also return things I don’t use. I’ve returned unused hamburger and hamburger buns to Costco after overbuying for Son’s birthday party.

Here’s another similar type of return: Walmart offers a satisfaction guarantee on their Great Value products. I like to try generics to see if they’re as good as the brand names, and if they are I happily switch. We’ve become big fans of their raisins, raisin bran and several other products.

But I had no problem whatsoever with returning their Crystal Light iced-tea knockoff that we opened and tried and which, according to Husband, “tasted like ASS”.

And it doesn’t end there. I’ve returned gifts I’ll never use, and even returned other people’s stuff.

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with returning something that isn’t as advertised, or that I no longer need. Why should I pay for sub-par merchandise? If my cake is stale or my scallops rancid I’m going to return it, even if I’ve opened it. I know lots of people would just toss these things and say, “lesson learned.” I choose not to. I’ll learn the lesson and put the money back in my pocket, thankyouverymuch. I’m not embarrassed about it, and I don’t think I need to be.

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12 Responses to “You Bet Your Ass I’ll Return That”

  1. Good Fountain Says:

    Who’s ass did your DH think that the iced-tea tasted like?

  2. BeThisWay Says:

    Goodfountain–
    Well, I’m not quite sure. But he’s sure been spending a lot of time with the dog…

  3. Cammie Says:

    I think you are in the right frame of mind when returning items because the items failed to meet your level of expectation (i.e. the scallops expiring before they should/pound cake). But I personally would have a problem returning hamburger meat and buns to Costco simply because *I* overbought. You know that Costco can’t take the risk of selling that product again (damn lawyers), so your return likely went directly into the trash. In the long run, that isn’t profitable for Costco, so either they will (a) raise prices, or (b) change their return policy…both of which affect other consumers. So, yes, I suppose you save money, but do you end up costing me because of your “frugal” ways?

  4. Miss Thrifty Says:

    I used to be a happy-go-lucky returner of goods, and I’ll still return if they’re sub-par.

    But I’ve recently stopped returning any other goods, for this reason, which really shocked me:
    http://www.miss-thrifty.co.uk/2008/09/15/supermarket-shoppers-a-word/

    I don’t know if this applies in the US though!

  5. Lisa Says:

    I’m with Cammie, the only thing I really disagreed with was the hamburger meat & buns. Those things can be frozen and used later, and there’s nothing Costco can do with them except trash them. But I’ve returned other stuff to Costco, like an orchid that died two weeks after I brought it home (NOT my fault, tyvm). I think there’s absolutely no problem with returning substandard merchandise.

  6. Allison Says:

    Hooray! I am not alone! I am a return-er, too. The back seat of my car is filled with things to return when I am out and about.

    -an empty bag of mulch to return to Home Depot. I was charged for 2 bags but only got 1.
    -a bottle of soda which I didn’t notice when I bought it was open; to return to Whole Foods.
    -a box of cake mix to return to Acme; I thought I needed it but found 2 way back in the cupboard.

    I have found Trader Joe’s is excellent about accepting back substandard merchandise. They never give a fuss.

  7. copyeditorsdesk Says:

    SDXB (Semi-Demi-Ex-Boyfriend, the Emperor of Cheap) showed me the way here. Before I met this character, I wouldn’t have dreamed of returning something unless it was broken or missing parts. I never, for example, returned stinky hamburger or stale cake. But lo! He returned stuff like that all the time, and got away with it!

    Now I do the same. Most stores will accept returns of unsatisfactory items. Costco is particularly generous this way; Home Depot also will take almost anything back. Safeway took back a steak that proved not to be so good after the package was opened. And when I found two possible necklaces for a dress in the closet and wasn’t sure which was best, I bought both of them, brought them home, kept the one that worked and returned the other one.

  8. Moments of Fame « Funny about Money Says:

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  9. Jennifer Says:

    And I thought I was alone in the world of Returns!

    Thanks for a great post. I am more likely to return non food items (gifts that missed the mark, clothes never worn, etc.), but this was a good reminder!

  10. Sarah Says:

    You are unbelievable. You return things because YOU didn’t need them? AFTER BUYING THEM? PERISHABLE ITEMS? Do you know where those perishable items go? THE TRASH. I hope you think twice the next time you tell “SON” he should eat all of his food because of the starving children around the world…. and did you mention to him that you help contribute to throwing away billions of pounds of food per year? The only thing you’re doing is being a huge pain in the ass and a waste of time for the person who has to return that product and then throw it out for you. Things that have gone bad are ok to return, as are products that are subpar (that crystal light knockoff…) but hamburger and buns??? You are beyond ridiculous.

  11. Carnival of Personal Finance #175 – "Jokey McJokester" ed. | Budgets Are Sexy Says:

    […] from Are You Going To Be This Way the Rest of the Time I Know You? presents You Bet Your Ass I’ll Return That. Haha…i LOVE the blog […]

  12. enngarceeahh Says:

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS!! i can relate and agree with u about the returns. My boyfriend always teases me about returns too! But hey, if were not satisfied then why not? Your too funny to top it off! :] Thank you for the costco bun returns, I need to return some tomorrow.


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