Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Is It Karma Paying it Forward, or Will Karma Get Me For It Later?!? A Moral Dilemma!

In today's post I am going to first present a moral dilemma, then I'm going to say (yet another) thank you which requires me to reveal ten things about myself (and the last thing is a doozy). So read on in whatever order befits your mood....

So, I tried to return some stuff at Nameless Big Box store this morning.... Here's the set up: I went Christmas and clothes shopping last Wednesday and spent waaaaay too much. Like, oh, ....I hate to say, but it is relevant to the story.... alright, fine, I spent $500. I know! I was totally taken aback by the amount and was feeling guilty about it and then decided that the Animal didn't really need all those pairs of pants and then double checked the Santa wish lists and realized that I got the wrong Wii game, so I decided to bring some things back. But I couldn't find my receipt! Not anywhere!! Which is only weird because I always save receipts that have to do with Christmas presents and when I spend a cringe-inducing amount. If you are returning stuff at this particular store and have the credit card you bought it with, though, it shouldn't make a difference whether you have a receipt or not. Well, not one item I was trying to return was on the card. Nothing. So they're like, "Well nothing is showing up on your card. Let me call the manager." And she walks off to explain what is going on to the manager. The manager then comes back over and says, "Well, it appears that your transaction was voided somehow. So you basically walked out of the store with $500 worth of stuff the other day." I'm like, "Wow. So what do you want me to do?" And then, all nonchalant-like he says, "If you could contact your bank and find out if they charged you or credited the money back to your account, would you mind giving me a call to let me know?" A bit perplexed, I was like, "Okay.... Do you have a business card with your number? And don't you want my number or some ....information? " And then he basically dismisses me by saying, "No, just call if you can." And the cashier pipes is, "Gee, sorry for all the confusion!"


So, is it just me, or does it seem like the whole situation is maybe too much of a pain for the store management to deal with, so he just dismissed the money as lost? I mean he didn't even write down my information! What's that all about?

I am thinking that I am just going to do nothing and if the charge eventually shows up on my card, I will be happy with it, and if it doesn't, well,.... Can I look at this as karma getting my back for all the nice things I've done before??? I resolved to pay it forward and bought the person's coffee in the car behind me at Starbucks today. I've got plans for more random acts of kindness to spread throughout the city. And ideas you'd like to share??

Now, for the Thank You! to Temple, the lovely and talented mistress of Cookies Mean God Loves You. She has tagged me with a meme (someone, please, ANYONE, tell me the origins of "meme" and what it means!) that requires that I share 10 things about myself that are honest and random, which, quite honestly, is how I present most information about myself, so it will be easy:

1. I hate taking baths, but I love sitting in a hot tub with bubbles and jets.
2. I would eat cake at every meal if it didn't equal a giant muffin-top above my pants' waistline.
3. On that note, I lost 35 pounds on Weight Watchers after my second child was born. I've been thinner the last five years than I have been at any other point in my adult life.
4. I feel like it is my duty and privilege to volunteer my time and resources to the community and world.
5. Sometimes I stay up late to watch four hours of TiVo'd shows in one sitting.
6. I am happy to not leave the house all day.
7. I think I'm way smarter and funnier than I actually am.
8. I truly believe that if I met George Clooney he would fall madly in love with me and insist I run away with him to his villa on Lake Como in Italy. No, seriously, he really would!
9. I LOVE being alone, but hate feeling lonely.
and this is the big one....
10. My husband just got accepted (today!) to a Boat Design & Engineering program in England and we will all be moving there next summer.

Watch out, Southampton, UK: The Bitchin' Family is about to descend on your fair isle and I'm guessing we're going to fall more into the "hooligan" class than the "ruling" class....


  1. You tried to fix the "problem" with the store not charging you for all the stuff you pruchased. The store manager didn't seem concerned about it. I say count it as a gift, an early Christmas present.
    Reminds me of the time we bought a TV at Ames Dept store right after we moved here to Pottstown. This was our gift to each other, a TV for our bedroom. At the time we didn't have cable yet so we couldn't get any channels and decided to return the TV to the store. I had the receipt, the clerk did the return. She said, "Oh wait. I made a mistake." She proceeded to do the return again. When I got my statment, my charge card had been credited twice. There was no way I could prove she made a mistake, so basically Ames bought us a TV at Sears a month later.

  2. Wow, that story is crazy! I'm assuming that this is the Big Bullseye store? Why does this never happen to me?!?!?

  3. The ultimate resource for everything you want to know... Wikipedia!

    Meme- comprises any idea or behavior that can pass from one person to another by learning or imitation. Examples include thoughts, ideas, theories, gestures, practices, fashions, habits, songs, and dances.

    Ideas for paying it forward...

    Totally weird experience with the store and manager and all...

  4. WTF????Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo
    I mean, congratulations, Amy and family!!

  5. Re: The moral dilemma. We had a similar situation a few years back in that we didn't get charged the full amount for something we had purchased. We didn't do it on purpose or anything but we decided it was their responsibility to finish billing us...not our responsibility to chase after them to finish paying our bill. Which is kind of the situation you find yourself in. It seemed like they basically just walked away from it so you should to. It is much easier to do this kind of thing to big nameless corporations though. I couldn't do it otherwise. If you feel guilty, then just do your pay it forward thing until you feel better. I guess I failed the moral dilemma thing but corporations screw so many people (including their employees) that I didn't feel all that bad. But now I'm starting too....crap.

    What big news! Wow! How exciting, scary, fun...

  6. OMG!!! You are moving to England!! How do you feel? Are you scared?
    About the dept store, I fell if they think it is no big deal...why should you? Is it right? ??? but I would thinkhtey would be alittle more concerned!

  7. Oh, I have so much to say! First, congrats on the hubby's acceptance and the move across the pond! I can hardly wait for all the "transplanted to the UK" blogs!
    Second, that is just wild about your "get out of jail free" card they gave you over the $500 shopping extravaganza! But I love your idea--just pass along the value of what you were going to spend anyway to others. My all time favorite suggestion--donate to your local animal shelter/foster/rescue program--they ALWAYS need help.
    And lastly, I have NO doubt that Sir George would fight to the death for you!

  8. I think you reap what you sow. And you've obviously sowed lots of good!

  9. It's funny because 5, 6, and 7 apply to me as well.

  10. Joanie: Thanks for the great story that really did make me feel better!

    Kristina P.: I'm using my magical skills to wish that everyone will benefit from a huge corporation's incompetence at some point in their life.

    Liz: You are a wealth of information and despite just having made a donation to Wikipedia (see my button to the left), it didn't even occur to me to look there for the answer! Ha! Thank you.

    Rants: It is a karmic payday for finding out we will be moving in 10 months, maybe?????

    Jenners: More validation, rationalization that I can relate to. Thank you!!! (And it is still OK to feel bad, too.)

    Angi_B: OMG yes WTF?!!!?!?! I AM FREAKING OUT but I am also so excited. Anticipation and anxiety in almost equal parts. It is a huge adventure and hopefully it will end up just being wonderful.

    Temple: Indeed, I think the move will create tons of blog fodder. I better be able to get a cable modem where we are....

    I like your thinking with the shelter. Always a worthy cause!
    Of course George would, he would be so smitten he'd have no choice but to!

    Janie: Even I'm not sure that I have done enough to deserve this windfall.... And that is why I am paying it forward.

    Hmmmmm, maybe a blog giveaway in the next couple weeks??? I'll have to ponder that and come up with something goooooooooood. :)

  11. My mom would so be on the phone trying to right this obvious (to her) wrong. Not me, I would kind of look at it the same way you are. Good karma. And I like your attitude. If it shows, it shoes. And you will be fine with that. And if it doesn't, well enjoy :)

  12. Queen Bee: Don't you love just clearing out the TiVo?? It is so satisfying.... Even better when you have nowhere to be and nothing to do!

    And I'm not sure that #7 isn't universal. ;)

  13. Gypsy: I shortened my story, but I actually went to the store twice and asked them if they wanted to take down my info to follow up with me at least three times. All in all I spent almost as hour of my time trying to get the whole thing figured out. I am dropping it b/c the manager was so completely blasé about it... See! I'm still defensive :)

  14. A) I would say you did what you could to return some items. And take it for what it is-a Christmastime Bonus. Either way, chances are your card will catch up with you.

    B)HOW EXCITING!!! My BFF just got back from living in the UK for 2 years. HOW COOL!?

  15. Can NOT believe that store story - that store manager is wacked. In a good way for you. I can see that happening with a $20 mistake but $500? That is so odd. Would NEVER happen here in LA is what I think....

    I would be like you trying to think this is a whole surprise gift and realize I tried to fix it and leave well alone...but it would haunt me a little bit. 'Cause I get like that over this kind of stuff.

  16. According to Wikepedia:

    Richard Dawkins coined the word "meme" as a neologism in his book The Selfish Gene (1976) to describe how one might extend evolutionary principles to explain the spread of ideas and cultural phenomena. He gave as examples melodies, catch-phrases, beliefs (notably religious belief, clothing/fashion, and the technology of building arches).

    I come from England.. You have nothing to fear, but maybe the UK has something to fear from you? (Just kidding!) I live in Sweden now...

  17. Wow Amy, England! I lived there for about 8 months after I graduated HS. I really enjoyed it. Many great memories, it will no doubt be a great adventure for your family. I'd be all anxious about the movie logistics... it's in the details.

  18. First, congrats on the move to the UK! That is so awesome (and I'm almost kinda jealous). Second, I hear you with the karma thing. It's such a bitch sometimes! But I think you'll be okay if you just let it slide this time.

    PS - At least once a week I clean out the DVR entirely. Sometimes I even tack on HBO/SHOWTIME-OnDemand shows that I need to catch up on.

  19. i'm hoping all your readers will start buying the order of the car behind them in the line at starbucks...this increases my chances of being the lucky stranger who is 2nd in line at the drivethru!!

  20. That's why we get on so well you see...I also think I'm way smarter and funnier than I am. But I figure, who cares? If I believe, that's what matters...uh...I guess...

  21. And yeah, it's your karma...keep it. You tried, tried. You're off the hook :)

  22. Number 9 applies to me.
    Great news about the move, it sounds very exciting!


Thoughts appreciated. Advice welcome. Douche-baggery scoffed at then deleted.