Take that, Target

So, I like Target. Really, I do. And I've got to say: working retail for like, 4 years (including like, a month or so at Target, before I gained true wisdom) has made me very sympathetic to any and all retail workers.

But I have had a couple of run ins with Target lately - one of which blemished an otherwise clean honesty record (oh ok...mostly clean. See how honest I am?), and another that left me a little bit frustrated and a lotta bit perplexed.

I'm going to focus on the second one, because really, the first one is between me and my Maker.

So I'd bought this metal Christmas sign thing from Target, and I decided I didn't want it anymore. I still had the receipt and needed to go to Target anyway, so I went to Target, baby in tow, and walked confidently up to the customer service desk.

"Hi, I just want to return this, please."

"Ok, is there anything wrong with it?"

"Oh no - I just changed my mind. I do that way too often...haha!"

(She doesn't laugh. Not even a courtesy chuckle! Boo.)

So she scans the barcode sticker on the sign, then does it again, and then looks at the sticker and does chuckle.

"Um, this is from Walmart."

What? It most certainly is not! It's from Target! This Target!

"Huh? No, I bought it here."

"No, look...it says 'Walmart' on the sticker."

I look at the sticker. It does not say "Walmart."

"Um, that says 'Wall Art.'"

She looks again.

"Oh yeah, it does."


"But still, it's not ours. It's not in our system."


"Are you sure? I can show you which thing it is on the receipt."

So I take the receipt back from her. Being the former Target employee that I am, I compare the item number on the receipt with the item number on the item's sticker. To my dismay, they don't match.

Now, this was the right receipt. I had kept in in the bag - the Target bag - with the sign ever since I bought the dang thing, which would have been a few days before this occurrence. So I was totally mystificated.

Target Lady saw what I was doing and must have decided it was a good idea because she totally copied me and did the same thing before stating, "Yeah, these numbers don't match. This isn't a Target item."

I desperately look at the sign's sticker one more time.

"But it says Target on here! 'Manufactured by Target Corp, target.com...'"

The thing said "Target" in like, three different places.

"Oh. Well did you get it online?"

Oh yeah, I forgot. I saw this Christmas decoration online and loved it oh so very much that I paid to have it shipped to my house. Then I waited a week before a big, three foot long box came with my precious sign in it. How could I have forgotten? And anyway, even if I had ordered it online, I should be able to return it to the store.

"No. I got it here. At this very store. I can show you where I found it...it was only a few days ago."

At this point, Target Lady 1 has called Target Lady 2 over and asked her for help. They both conclude that my sign is not in their system, and they will not take it back. They refuse to believe that I'm not insane and that I did, in fact, buy the sign at their store. They just won't take it.

And I won't take that. Don't think I thought for a second about just taking that sign back home with me. I marched over to the aisle where I had found it, determined to find another one and thereby prove my sanity. If it wasn't there...well, I guess Maddy and I would just wait in the store until they got more. I was ready to camp out there until next Christmas when they'd (hopefully) bring out all the crap that they didn't sell this year.

So I go to the aisle...and there it is. In fact, there they are. Two more signs that look just like mine. In the exact same spot. Because it's only been a few days. And because I'm not crazy.

So I grab one of these signs and go back to customer service.

Only Target lady #2 is there...not a major party in the issue, but she knows what's going on.

I show her the other sign.
She takes my receipt.
She pushes buttons.
And about 5 seconds later I'm walking away, refund in hand.

Now, what the heck? Why was it so easy for her? And why couldn't it have been so easy for Target Lady 1?

I guess just because they didn't believe me.

But that doesn't matter. I believe in myself.

Katie: 2
Target: 0