A Consumer Experience Lesson By Sears

As you may have recently seen in one of my latest posts, I had a piss-poor experience with Sears Appliance repair services where they went to the wrong house and would not come back that day.

But the experience reminded me of one of my better learning experiences that helped shape how I am as a consumerist today.


As you may or may not know, I am a picky consumer. I don't just charge out and buy things because an ad says something good about a product. Advertising is designed to trick you into buying things, whether they're good things or not. Advertising is designed to appeal to certain aspects of your identity, whether it be with music from your youthful era, colors that are naturally appealing or even just referencing one of the strongest bonds there is, family.

No, I do my research trying to figure out the best product to buy, what's a potential lemon what's not.  I comparison shop for quality and price. I look at consumer reviews, making sure there are enough reviews to merit considering the consumer score (making sure the seller isn't spiking a review score, maybe production companies do with their movies.)

So back in the early 90s, I was hot to trot to buy a computer and I had my eye on one in Sears. But I didn't just jump out there and buy it. I went comparison shopping, and this shopping took a few fortuitous weeks, because, well, back then, you had to walk/bike/drive to various stores to compare prices!

(The numbers may not be accurate, but the observation is.)

I had watched this one computer I spotted in Sears, which was going for around $700 and by the time I was ready to buy it, about a month or so later, it was ON SALE for $850.  Wait, what?  Scratching your head yet?

Turns out that while I had been doing my comparison shopping and watching this computer, the price had jumped up to $1,000 and right after the price jump, it went on sale for an amazing $850, "down from $1,000."

I found that pretty peculiar and that experience drove me away from supporting Sears for a pretty long time. I had since gotten over that (until recently), but they taught me a valuable consumer lesson and I am now even more aware of product prices because of this experience. In fact, it may very well be because of this experience that I have become so consumer-centrist.

So for that, I thank you Sears, and for my latest experience,

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