Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The $85 Watch Battery

Almost every watch I have ever owned was a Timex. I had a Swatch once but somebody stole it. Nobody ever wanted my Timex watches. They took a licking and kept on ticking until I either stopped winding them or quit replacing batteries.

My partner bought me a nice watch for Christmas (2008). I'm sure he was disappointed by my lack of interest in fancy features. He's all about the latest technology--or was, until he turned 30. I just wanted a watch with a white face and big numbers so I could see the time without having to reach for my glasses.

We finally settled on a Swiss Army watch. It's plain, simple, and exactly what I wanted. I love it and wear it every day.

Or I did, until the battery died last week. When I mentioned to my partner my plans to drop into Walmart for a new battery, he suggested I instead go to the pawn shop for more knowledgeable assistance. Sounded like a good idea, so I did.

Rather than the pawn shop I went to the Fine Jewelry store located right next door. OK. It was really just a different door to the pawn shop. But I felt better about going in.

The kind gentleman behind the counter was only too happy to help. He took my watch to someone working in a backroom and returned to help a customer who came in after me. No problem.

While he was still helping the other customer, a lady came out of the back with my watch. She told me the cost was $10. I gave her $10 cash and she returned to the back room. She didn't give me a receipt but I had my watch so I left.

That night I noticed the watch had stopped again. I figured the pawn shop installed the wrong battery. Since I didn't have a receipt, I decided to eat the $10 rather than return to the pawn shop.

The next day I drove all the way across town to the watch store. I told the guy I'd taken the watch someplace else and shared my theory about the wrong battery. He took my watch to a back room.

When he came back he asked where I'd taken it. I panicked. Instead of the truth I told him I took it to Walmart. He said Walmart isn't authorized to work on these watches. Uh oh.

He returned to the backroom and came back with my watch and a sad look on his face. The watch was damaged and I would need to leave it for an estimate of the cost to repair it. He offered to talk to the people at Walmart about paying for the damage and wanted to know which of the two stores in town it was. UH OH.

I came clean. I admitted I'd taken the watch to a pawn shop and failed to get a receipt for the battery. He backed away from the counter and looked at me suspiciously. I'm not sure if he reacted to the lie or the fact I'd taken my nice watch to a pawn shop for a battery.

Today I picked up my fully-functioning watch. The cost? Just $70 for the part and $5 for the labor. When I entered the transaction in Quicken, I classified the $75 as an educational expense.

And that's the truth, or I'm not...

The Crotchety Old Man


CathyB said...

Oh dear. I know it's not funny, but the way you write about it made me chuckle. Remember - "Oh what a tangled web we weave..." I'm sorry the lesson was such an expensive one.

Incidentally, I got an e-mail offering 15% off a new blog-book. If you're interested, let me know and i'll get the info to you. CathyB

Crotchety Old Man said...

Thanks CathyB. Honestly I thought it was funny, too. I got notice yesterday that my first blog book has shipped (for Tico & Toodles). Can't wait to see it! If it looks OK I plan to send it to my Internet-free Mother.

CathyB said...

Yay! I'm glad you ordered your book and are expecting it soon! I haven't done mine yet. So far it's a little over 100.00, and I need to make sure I have the extra funds. I hope you're happy with how it turns out! I'm sure mom will love it!

Crotchety Old Man said...

I started to include all my posts but since I haven't seen the book yet, and the cost was climbing, I opted to go with just a few months instead. Should arrive any day. If you don't me complaining about it in a blog post, it turned out good!

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