Re: United Future Organization + DJ Iball's SPY NITE

Bijan Pesaran (
Wed, 2 Apr 1997 17:02:36 -0800

I used to do a reasonable amount of my music shopping at Virgin
because it seemed convenient and they do have a relatively large
selection of cds. But ever since I had a run in with the manager of
the Megastore on Sunset Blvd in LA I haven't spent a penny there
again. Here's why:

I was browsing through some titles one day last year when an assistant
came up and said hi, asking me what music I was interested in.
When i told him he suggested a release they had on import saying it
was really good. I wasn't sure as I hadn't heard much about the label
or group and it was pricey. But the guy said it was a no-lose
situation because they always accept imports for an exchange. They
even have a sign on the cash registers stating that. Fine, I
thought, I might as well check it out.

As it turns out, I wasn't that impressed with the sounds
and, feeling guilty about the price I paid, I
took the cd back. This is where it gets bad. The assistant I saw
said that he had to get the manager and made me wait about 5 minutes
in line (people piling up behind me). When the manager showed up he
said he couldn't accept the cd because I had listened to it! I
couldn't believe it. Nowhere was this stated, and their own employee
had suggested that i listen to the cd before returning it. Besides,
the rule seemed totally arbitrary - listening to the cd doesn't change
it in any way. (Note: There is no plastic packaging on imports,
that's why they accept them for exchange once opened - they are
already opened when you buy them). I tried to explain my situation to
the manager and pointed to the sign right under his nose on the cash
register stating my rights. He wasn't having any of it. There was no way he could
accept a cd that had been listened to. "Would you accept a cd that
had been listened to?" He asked me, i said that I honestly had no
problem with it, but he didn't seem to care. "Returns are why the Wherehouse is
going bust". He retorted. "It's people like you that are losing us
money". At this I was getting pretty annoyed. He was getting
personal and was raising his voice. I tried to tell him that I had spent a lot of
money in his store already and, at the prices they charge, I was hardly
profiting. "I don't care how much money you spend at this store." He
snarled at me. "You know what I'm gonna do for you? Go into the store
and choose another cd right now and I'll give you an exchange. But I
don't want to see your face in here again. Do you here me?" I
was totally stunned. I started to feel guilty because there was a
line of people waiting behind me and I felt as though I were the
trouble-maker. So I just turned around, picked up another cd (i
didn't really want anything) and made the exchange. After the
manager had left the assistant started giving me lip and basically
treating me pretty badly. I swear, I never raised my voice or got
bolshy, I just responded to the guys points as he raised them.

Like I said I haven't gone back. Instead I spent a little time
searching around LA and found a couple of pretty good independents
whose import buyers special order stuff for me and even give me a
discount. I save at least 20% off what I paid at Virgin and
have made some friends. Even if you aren't near a metropolitan area,
mail order firms are all over the place and provide quick efficient
service on the whole. I have mentioned modern music in maryland
before and pj, the mail order guy there is really good about making
sure he fulfils your order or letting you know about any difficulties
he's having.

I would recommend staying away from these faceless (rude) coorporate
outfits. If you're looking for hard-to-find items, get to know the
people working at an independent. Well worth the effort - and a lot
more enjoyable!