Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Costco Comes Through!

Costco gave me $25 because they tried to kill my ex-girlfriend!

I guess that needs some explanation. Back in the mid-90's I dated a woman named Nancy for a few months. Not very serious, and we grew bored with each other, had an amicable split, and have remained friendly since. When we were going out, she was a single mom, and her ex was not always coming through with the child support, making her life difficult. So, I gave her the second membership card that Costco (I think it still might have been Price Club) gives you, a good deed that cost me nothing.

A few years later Nancy married a guy named Tony, who also has kids. They continued using the Costco card from me, which made sense since it was free and I had completely forgotten about it.

Maybe 8 years ago Costco came out with the Executive Membership, which, along with other small benefits, gives you 2% back on all purchases. When they tried to upsell me to this, I said there was no way I spent enough for it to make sense. But when the lady looked, she said I had spent something like $3000 the previous year. I had forgotten that Nancy, now in a family of 5 or 6, was using the other card. So I took the Executive membership, and now get 2% karma payback for a good deed done long ago. Whenever I see Nancy and Tony around town I suggest they need new tires and a big screen TV.

What does this have to do with poison?

Sunday night I got home and my neighbor had left a post-it on my door to call right away. He tells me that Costco had come to my house because I had bought some gouda cheese that day, and it had salmonella, and they wanted to take it back before I ate it and died. But I had not been to Costco that day, so I concluded it had to be Nancy.

I did not have her number, did not know Tony's last name, and wasn't even sure if she'd changed her's when they married. But, I found her in the phone book and called. She said Tony had eaten some cheese while watching football, but she thought it was not the gouda. Disaster averted.

The next morning, Costco calls and I tell them I got the message and Nancy has the cheese and knows not to eat it. He says he wants to bring a $25 gift card over for my trouble, and that he would also like to give one to Nancy, so I give him her number when he arrives.

The message in this is that Costco handled this as well as any company I have ever heard of with this type of problem. Coming to my house to get the cheese when they are concerned! Wow! Giving me a gift card just because they bugged me a bit? Very classy. Too many companies try to shun any responsibility in a case like this. They went out and fixed it as fast as they could. Think I will continue to shop there? I sure will, although maybe I won't be buying any gouda cheese there for while.

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