Life as a collection of embarrassing moments

~a column by Colleen O’Brien

Sometimes, trying to make things right with a purchase takes some thought.

My friend DW bought a pair of shoes for winter wear when she vacations elsewhere than where she lives, which is the warm state of Florida.

She’d had the shoes for a year or so, not wearing them much, when things started to fall apart. She looked up the company, ECCO, and wrote them a letter:

“Gentlemen:
“I am enclosing a photograph of a pair of ECCO shoes which I purchased last winter. I’ve only worn them in the winter and as you can see, I live in Florida. They’ve been worn on a few vacations to colder climates but basically not worn much at all.

“You can imagine my surprise last week when on a vacation to Asheville, NC, we found that the black fragments all over the carpet were coming from the bottom of my shoes. They still look great on the top and sides, so it took some detective work to find the problem. It was important because the B ’n B had white carpeting and we had been asked to protect it.

“From the looks of the sole, I don’t think a shoemaker could fix the problem.

“I’m asking you to replace these shoes, send something else comparable or refund my money.

“These are not cheap shoes, and I expected them to last the rest of my life; I am 81, so not too much to ask.

“Sincerely, DW”

Her answer came in post haste:
“DW,

“We are not the ECCO Shoe Company.

“We are the ECCO company that makes warning lights and alarms for trucks and heavy equipment.

“Linette, Accounts Recievable.”

The funny part of the story isn’t that the Accounts Receivable gal misspelled her job title, but that by writing to the first ECCO company she found online, my friend looked even less like she was paying attention than the AR employee.

So many little things we do in our lives embarrass us. You’d think by 81 we’d be about done with having to blush at ourselves.

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