Amazon Calico Critters
So there's these things. You may have heard of them. Unless you're one of my Facebook friends or Twitter followers. Then only four of you will actually know what I'm talking about.
I crowdsourced to find out if these were really worth the investment, but all I got were crickets chirping. Exactly four people responded to my query about these little fuzz covered animals that live in the animal equivalent of Silicon Valley. Read: expensive and tiny real estate.
Calico Critters are teeny and adorable animal families who live a rich country lifestyle that includes villas, townhomes, treehouses, manors and a vast array of clothing, furniture, cars, amusement parks, etc. Don't stay on the website too long. There is something strangely hypnotic about the music and the neverending pathway. YOU WILL NEVER GET OUT.
In doing my research for what to tell Santa to get Emmy this year, I've become somewhat of a Calico Critter expert. I didn't read a single book about child birth but dagnabbit ask me about the Furbanks family of squirrels or the Wilder panda family and you'll wish you never started down that path.
Anyway, The Good Doctor and I were debating the merits of the Country Tree House (with its mango monkeys, hot tub, slide and pagoda) vs. the Cloverleaf Manor (with a palatial 9 room spread, chandelier, and balcony.) That was Monday. The Good Doctor found the treehouse for 119.99 on Amazon.com. Pretty huge since it sells for 179.99 to 199.99 on Toys R Us, Target, and at local toy stores.
But analysis paralysis had us in its grips. Do we go for the giant mansion or the quirky treehouse? We finally decided that because most of Emmy's pretend play involves animals going to the park and to pre-school, the treehouse would be more fun. Besides, in reading dozens of reviews about these things, decorating the manor was going to be a biatch. I don't have 9 rooms of furniture in my real home, and I'll be damned if I have to spend my weekends making teeny curtains out of toothpicks and scraps of fabric for 18 windows.
Log onto Amazon on Wednesday and WTF, the damn treehouse is now 179.99. FIFTY dollars more.
Long story short, we called Amazon to see if there was any way to get the original price. First person put us on hold a bunch and said there wasn't anything they could do to offer that sale price.
It was a sucky feeling, but it was our fault for not pulling the purchase trigger. But, as I learned way back when with my dad's DMV carpool sticker experience, when at first you don't succeed, call back at least one more time. You never know if you just got a customer service rep who was in a bad mood, inexperienced, unhelpful, or just unauthorized to make any decisions.
So The Good Doctor called Amazon customer service again and this time, Valerie answered. He explained that we shouldn't have waited but we didn't realize the price was going to go up 50 bucks in two days. And just like that, Valerie put a $50 promotional discount on the account that we could use toward the house.
NGUYENING! That is primo customer service. Amazon gets the purchase at the same price they first offered, so there's no additional sweat off their backs. Plus they get SUPER happy customers who will now blow even more of our hard earned money on tiny fuzz covered figurines and accessories.