Name: margalit
Location: Massachusetts, United States Professional writer, educational advocate, opinionated ultra liberal mother of 18 year old twins, living life in the slow lane due to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, congestive heart failure, and diabetes.

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Sunday, January 25, 2009

Boots: The continuing saga

Now that we have gotten the Boy's boot crisis out of the way, it's time for the Girl to have her own crisis. Because, in our house, nothing ever goes smoothly for too long. It's just our way of showing that we still need Mom to solve our problems. Lucky me!

As you might recall, when the Girl got her job the day after she turned 16 (call her industrious), the very first thing she spent her paycheck on was a pair of chocolate brown tall Ugg classic boots. She had longed for those boots forever and a day, and she was so excited to get them that we had to drive all the way out to Nordstrom because they were the only store that had her size in stock on that particular day.

She bought them with such pride and she was so excited about having this brand new pair of Uggs that she bought on her own. It was huge for her. She's 16, give her a break. Uggs are absolutely THE most popular thing to wear on your feet in the winter out here. They just are. So shut it about how ugly they are. We disagree and our feet are warm and cozy. So there!

As you know, we're not having a nice simple and easy winter. We have tons of snow, and with tons of snow goes lots of salt and sand in the roads. Salt that does an amazing amount of damage to a chocolate brown pair of Uggs. The Girl walks to school, and most people in our city are just TOO entitled to actually shovel their walkways. It's not a law, believe it or not, so people just will not shovel. That means that kids walking to school have to walk in the streets. Streets filled with salt and sand that do severe damage to a brand new pair of boots.

Within a month, her boots were ruined. I mean seriously ruined. The entire footpad was gone. All of the fleece just disappeared and there was no padding left. The entire foot of the outside of the boot was terribly stained with salt. Salt that we could not get off no matter how hard we tried.

And we tried hard.

Now, we're not novice Ugg owners. I've had several pairs over the years, as had the Girl. We've never ever seen anything like how these boots fell apart so fast. It wasn't as if she was doing anything other than walking to and from school. I'm wearing a pair of Uggs right this second that are on their 4th winter and they look brand new. I walk through snow with them all the time. They are in perfect order.

So I went online and contacted Nordstrom customer service and told them about the boots and asked if there were any recourse. The customer service people were so nice and they said "of course" and that they would look for a pair for her, or we could go to our "local" Nordstrom and exchange them. So off we went with the letter from customer service and tried to exchange the boots. Nordstrom refused to take them back, even though we had a promise from cust. serv., we had the original reciept that showed the boots were only a month old, and we had the Nordstrom guarantee that the customer was always right. Except for this time.

The Girl was devistated, to say the least. She was out $160 dollars, she had nothing to wear on her feet that would satisfy her need to be wicked cool, and Nordstrom was a complete disappointment to us, even after I explained that she bought them out of her own money and she was 16 years old. Tough luck. They didn't budge.

The Girl's boyfriend promised to get her another pair of Uggs, but his parents put the kibosh on that idea, so she was doubly disappointed.

She bought herself a pair of rubber boots with a gift card she had, and they're fine IF she puts on 3 pairs of warm hiking socks as well. But the deal is, she's out a pair of Uggs and she's terribly disappointed.

I'm not sure what to do. Do I contact customer service again and tell them that the store wouldn't exchange them? Do we just admit defeat and try and wait out the winter? Or do I let her spend money again on a pair of Uggs? I just don't know what path to take.

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Blogger Daisy said...

My heart aches for her. I like your idea of contacting customer service and telling them that the store refused to take them back. Maybe they'll put some pressure on Nordstroms.

25/1/09 8:25 PM  
Blogger Robin said...

I would DEFINITELY contact customer service again - that's just not right.

26/1/09 2:46 AM  
Blogger JaneB said...

Contact customer service again, definitely

26/1/09 5:55 AM  
Blogger Suzy said...

I would contact Customer Service again and even try and find Uggs customer service number. Definitely would not buy another pair of Uggs until this was satisfactorily sorted out.

26/1/09 6:41 AM  
Blogger Blog Antagonist said...

Maybe try Uggs corporate instead? After all, it's their product that performed so poorly, and perhaps they could replace them directly and eliminate the need for wrangling with Nordrstom.

I feel for her so much. My family was somewhat economically challenged when I was a kid, and I bought a lot of my stuff with money I had earned. It takes a lot of blood sweat and tears for a 16 year old to earn that kind of money.

26/1/09 7:39 AM  
Blogger Kat said...

I would definitely call Nordstrom cust. serv. again and tell them about the "local" store. If you have the name of the rep. who refused that would be even better. Nordstrom's does not want the bad press.

26/1/09 11:41 AM  
OpenID chloefieri said...

Absolutely contact customer service again! I was just talking to someone last week about her new Uggs and she said they were actually 4 years old but everytime they got messed up with salt she took them back to Nordstrom and they cleaned them up for her.

26/1/09 12:02 PM  
Blogger Lunch Buckets said...

Just echoing the rest of the flock - call customer service again.

27/1/09 2:42 AM  
Blogger margalit said...

I sent the cust serv person an email with the photos attached and asked her to send a new pair of boots. Tomorrow I'll call. I wanted them to SEE the boots first.

27/1/09 6:18 PM  
Blogger eema said...

I hate to be the odd one out on this one, but it's just plain obvious that those boots are not meant to be worn in snowy, wet conditions. Every shlumpy looking pair of UGG's I see out there all look the same after being worn in wet weather. What gives? They're NOT snow boots. Despite 'everyone' wearing them, they all look like that after one wearing. Of course it sucks to work that hard and purchase on her own, but the consequences are totally obvious and I don't think Nordstrom's is responsible for giving out new pairs to everyone who wore these boots in this weather. I'm certain that nowhere on the label does it say waterproof.

29/1/09 11:34 AM  
Blogger margalit said...

Eema, you're right, the boots aren't waterproof. Which is why she bought the Uggs waterproofing spray and waterproofed them THREE times before she wore them outside.

The boots are made of sheepskin. Unless I'm incorrect, sheep spend much of their time OUTSIDE in the rain and snow. Therefore they should not fall apart after the hide is tanned and waterproofed. The outside IS stained. But the inside is the real problem. ALL of the fleece inside the boots fell out. Gone. Vamoosed. That is NEVER supposed to happen. And nobody we know who has had Uggs has ever seen anything like it.

29/1/09 1:11 PM  

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