Kaufmann’s Department Store: You suck. That’s all. End of story.

So, back in the beginning of August, I was doing some shopping in Kaufmann’s. I picked out a sweater, and as I went to the checkout, I noticed their signs around that said I could get 10% off of my purchase that day if I applied for a Kaufmann’s charge. <shrug> Sure, why not? It only takes a few minutes, and I’d save a few bucks…my sweater was only $20, so applying for the card would make it $18.

I take my sweater home and basically forget about the card for a while. I went on vacation. I signed a contract on a house. I had other things on my mind. The end of September rolls around, and as I’m putting this summer sweater away for the season, I realize that I never got my card or the bill for the sweater in the mail. So, during a slow time at work the next day, I call up Kaufmann’s to ask what went wrong. I wind up in one of those endless automated attendant systems that don’t appear to want to let you speak to a human being…every option I hit kept asking me for my Kaufmann’s account number. Hmmmm…since I was never issued a card or a bill, I wouldn’t know that, now would I?

I finally start pushing buttons until I get a real person, and I coerce them into transferring me to a live person in the credit department. I explain to the lady that I bought this item, I never received the card and was never billed for it, etc. She looks it up and says “Oh, that account package was returned to us as undeliverable.” She asks to verify my address, and it turns out that they’d tried to send the card to an address that I hadn’t lived at for over 5 years. I can only assume that since I did the instant-approval application method, they pulled my address info from my credit report rather than the application I filled out in the store. How they pulled the old address rather than my current one is beyond me.

In any case, she fixes the address and other contact information and says she’ll be sending my card and a reprint of my statement out the next business day. She even agreed to remove any finance charges on my bill, since it wasn’t my fault that they didn’t bill me in time.

A few days later, I get the reprint of the original statement in the mail. I put it with my bills to pay the next time I get paid. Two days later, I get a second statement in the mail with an $18 late fee and more finance charges, since I never paid the original bill (which, if you’ll recall, I’d only received for the first time 2 days earlier).

Before I could mail a check for the original bill, the collection calls start. Every night, I’d come home to a message on my answering machine from Kaufmann’s, asking me to please call them about my past due balance. As if. They catch me at home last Tuesday evening, and I not-so-patiently explain to the guy that my account is NOT past due, that they had screwed up my account, that it was ME who had called THEM and said “Hey, do you intend to bill me for this or not?” and that I had just received the bill for the first time a few days earlier.

I thought I had made things clear. Not only did I intend to pay, I had pursued them, asking them to please send me a bill. I expected the collection calls to stop. I was obviously wrong. Every day this week, I came home in the evening to more messages on my answering machine. Since I had already mailed the payment on Monday, I ignored them. Until they called me at work yesterday. Engage Berkserker Mode. :mad:

I wouldn’t be surprised if this guy’s ear was blistered from the stream of invective I channeled through the phone line. I less-than-politely told him to never EVER EVER call me at work again. I asked him what fucked up priority did they have that they’d pursue $18 with this kind of vigilance, given the circumstances I’ve described above. I invited him to please close my account immediately. When he told me that they’d wait until they received my payment and then call me to verify that my account had been closed, I told him that we were finished right this very second, and that I did not want to receive another phone call from Kaufmann’s, ever. Period. Done.

These people have got to be the largest group of complete incompetents I’ve ever dealt with in my entire life. Fuck them. Fuck their collection efforts on a piddling $18 that I fucking ASKED them to bill me for. Fuck calling me AT WORK to collect on said $18. They can take a flying fuck at a rolling donut. My business with them is finished. Assholes.

Well, I was going to wait until later, but since you’re already in a pissy mood, ya got that $5 you owe me?
[sub]What, it wasn’t you? Oh, sorry. <g>[/sub]

[sub]Checks pockets, comes up empty…[/sub]

Nope, sorry…no cash. But maybe you’d like to send some thugs over to wait for me in the parking lot where I work and they can try to beat it out of me later. :wink: