Saturday, November 12, 2005

Home Improvement

Yesterday, needing some screws to hang up a curtain rod, I went to the mecca of home improvements- none other than Home Depot. Whenever I go to Home Depot, I find myself closer to understanding the feminine psyche than at any other place. I’ll go with a specific purchase in mind, and yet inevitably end up spending hours just roaming the store looking at all the new stuff they’re selling. Back in high school, my mom would send me off to pick up a fresh propane tank so she could grill steaks for dinner. When I still hadn’t returned home later in the night, she would frantically call my cell figuring I must’ve gotten in a car accident.

Anyways, I was wandering around the store when I decided to ask one of the sales people for help (if you’ve never been, there’s not a greater resource than Home Depot workers, trust me). He was a nice enough fellow, but you could tell he definitely got way too much pleasure from working in the power tools section of the store. In his enthusiasm, he ended up trying to sell me a $100 hammer drill (keep in mind this occurred right after another employee had already told me all I needed was a $30 one). When I pointed out the $30 option, he replied, “Well you could get that one . . .” and then gave me a look that said, “but I would never have any respect for you for the rest of your life.” Logic like that is what makes it so hard for a guy to make prudent purchasing decisions (as evidenced by the fact I routinely buy electronics roughly 3 times more expensive than I need or that every time I go to Hooters with my friends we get 50 wings when 30 would do just fine).

Seeing that I was still wavering in my decision, the employee pulled out his trump card, “If you buy this drill, you’ll never need another one for the rest of your life. Heck, you’ll teach your kids how to use this drill in your home.” All of this seemed like a fairly convincing argument until it dawned on me that I’m single, in my early 20’s, and living in a rented apartment in the city. Suffice to say, the white picket fence surrounding my house in the ‘burbs is still a quite a ways off. I politely declined his offer only to watch him use the same line on a couple in their late 20’s standing right behind me. Apparently those extra years were the difference, for they gladly picked up said drill and left with wide smiles on their faces, clearly thinking about little Billy happily drilling away before he could walk.

Unfortunately, you’d be sadly mistaken if you were thinking my purchasing restraint lasted the entire trip. When it turned out there were different two methods to attach the curtain rod to my concrete ceiling, I debated as to which I wanted to use. I ended up just buying enough materials to do both, with the rationale that whatever I didn’t use I could always return. And this no-questions-asked return policy is single handedly turning young Americans into a generation of impulse buyers. Of course, that’s another story for another time; right now I need to go return a drill set.

Mr. J


Blogger Berry said...

LOL! Great piece. Home Depot is dangerous territory. I still haven't been to the one of the east side of the city. That must be an experience.

7:50 PM  

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