Recently, Tim signed up to receive Office 2007 if he bought something from this online promotion. He told me all he had to do was buy a $9.99 Cuisinart coffee grinder and he would get Office 2007 for free. Hmmm sounded a little bit better than true, but we needed a new coffee grinder. Our poor coffee grinder had tumbled off the shelf one too many times and, therefore, it was held together with chewing gum and string.
Over Christmas our daughter’s boyfriend Travis said “your parents don’t drink and they don’t smoke but they sure do like some “crack” coffee.” Tim has been called a coffee snob on more than one occasion. We laughed and continued to drink our Peet’s Coffee that Tim received as a Christmas gift, but I wonder was it an observation or a premonition of what was in store for us?
Before the package arrived I saw a mysterious charge of $34.95 appear on one of our accounts. I asked Tim if he knew anything about a charge from something called Seattle Direct. He said, oh yeah, that’s the $9.99 coffee grinder. I walked away wondering how a $9.99 coffee grinder morphed into $34.00 but didn’t say anything. A few days later, the long awaited coffee grinder accompanied by two packages of coffee arrived. If those are one pound packages, I will eat my bucket hat.
We laughed and said, oh well lesson learned. Anyway, we have a new coffee grinder. The thing didn’t like it at our house and was very uncooperative from the first time we used it. The lid wouldn’t settle on the lip right and it didn’t want to grind coffee beans at all. You had to shake it and jostle the beans around inside so that you wouldn’t grind a few beans into dust leaving the rest of the beans whole. We gritted our teeth and thought that eventually we would get the hang of the thing.
Three days later it died never seeing the arrival of two more pounds (!?!) of coffee. Hawaiian Hazelnut Kona Blend is certainly something that my resident gourmand would buy. Oh no, it isn’t. Needless to say, I ran to the computer to see what the latest charges would be. You got it, another $48.95 debited to our account. These must be some kick ass coffee beans.
Tim immediately got on the phone to SEATTLE DIRECT-remember this name and run, don’t walk away-the very polite young man told Tim that he had signed up for two pounds a month. Tim told him in no uncertain terms he hadn’t done anything of the kind and he wanted to be taken off the list and reimbursed for the cheap coffee grinder. The young man very slowly and precisely informed Tim that the company was only honoring the contract he had made.
And then it began, Tim started to rally the troops for the unfair business practices that had been foisted upon us. He posted about it here. When I went to the complaint board, a shiver went up my spine. Many of these people said that they had never signed up for the coffee shipments and some of them were receiving shipments of two pounds every two or three days and each time their credit cards were charged. Many of them said that the company was very unresponsive and that there was no way that any of them could drink that much coffee, but it arrived on schedule at least once a week. Not one of them said the shipment was one a month.
Now, Tim and I are heavy coffee drinkers, and we always offer a cup to friends and neighbors, but there is no way that we will need more than four pounds of the stuff in a month. For one thing, it is awful coffee. It is dry, dusty, not a bit of oil anywhere in sight. So here we are paying through the nose for coffee that we do not want, forced to drink it night and day to get rid of it, and waiting in horror for the next shipment to arrive on our doorstep. We are kind of in our own Nightmare on Denison Avenue. Or have we become victims of addiction in reverse? Remember, boys and girls, stay away from Seattle Direct.