Sunday, October 19, 2008

Beware of Buying Refurbished from Tigers!


A couple of weeks ago, I decided to buy a refurbished laptop “directly” from a “Tiger” online. Being a monkey and they being a tiger, I should have realized that there would be some communication issues which would lead me to be somewhat disappointed with my purchase.

The laptop I ordered was a Dell Latitude D610. I know going into my purchase that this was an older model and that it wouldn’t win any speed tests. I bought it because I had a chance to use one at my workplace and I really liked the sturdy body frame. It was perfect to use when I have to go out into the field or if I have to lend a computer to someone who is known to have the case of “The Clutz.”

When my order came, I was very excited. I must’ve opened four boxes before I managed to free the machine from its packaging. When I finally opened it, I felt my quickly heart sunk. Sure, it was the right model laptop, but the machine looked more “used” than I expected. The case had way too many scars and the screen looked a little too washed out as if it had been set on full brightness for way too long. But this wasn’t what bothered me the most.

Now, I can live with the case scars. I can convince my monkey self that they’re battle scars and that it gives the machine character. The screen being washed out is something to keep an eye out and may have to be replaced if it eventually burns out. The thing that bothered me the most is the keyboard. Yes, the keyboard looked so used up that some of the keys were shiny, but this wasn’t the worst thing. The keyboard was also filthy. Between the keys were crumbs of what I could only assume as Doritos. The keys felt greasily slick. It was as if the tiger working on the machine was sloppily eating chips on the laptop while they did their supposed refurbishing.

I called the Tiger and explained my issue. They tell me that it happens sometimes and that a system slips through the cracks and miss its cleaning session. They added that I could send it back for an exchange since it’s only been less than two weeks but I would have to pay for shipping to send it back and to get my replacement.

Now, when I buy something that is refurbished I expected it be cleaned and restored to a nice working condition. I didn’t expect it to be greasy with chip crumbs. That’s something I expect from tuna casserole.

I looked into how much it would cost to ship the laptop back to the Tigers in its original box and a burly man at the UPS Store told me that it was going to cost me close to a hundred clams.

Now being in a country where someone let a “shrub from Texas” depress the economy, I have found myself unable to spare any more clams. So, I acquiesced and decided that I would just spend five clams on cleaning supplies and clean the nasty laptop.

I spent three hours today cleaning that bloody thing. I really shouldn’t have had to do it. Apparently in the language of the Tigers, refurbished means “greasy with chips.” I’ll have to remind myself not to buy a refurb from these animals.

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