Yesterday, I took my 9 year old ("9-3/4 Daddy!" Whoops, sorry little one) over to Target to get her a new bike. I went to Target over the LBS because she is very hard on things, plus I didn't want to spend $300 on a bike she may outgrow in a couple of years. I'll get her the better bike then.
After much looking over and negotiation (Oh, you other parents know what I mean!), she settled on a nice model. "I've got to have THIS bike, Dad". Whew. $75
I was looking over the bike when I noticed that the front brakes didn't work properly; one side was not contacting the wheel. Should be an easy fix, right?
We took the bike over to Customer No Service. The conversation went like this:
Me: Hi. We want to buy this bike. I see the brake is not working so can we have this taken care of?
Rep: We will repair it.
Me: Great. Do you call someone now?
Rep: No. We will repair it.
Me: Ok. So do I give you my name and then you let us know when it's done?
Rep: No. We just put it back on the shelf.
Me: Excuse me?
Rep: We just put it back.
Me: Well, my daughter wants this bike so what's to stop someone else from buying this one?
Me: That's insane. We want this bike! We are ready to pay for it right now!
Now what I should have done is call a manager but I was so pissed off at this point ( and tired, hot, wanting to leave the store), that I put the bike back on the shelf, tolerated my little one's complaints and left. I am sending a note to the store manager today. Now I know why people say don't buy a bicycle anywhere but the LBS.
BTW, I noticed when returning the bike to it's slot that nearly all of the other bikes were missing parts, etc. What a joke!