Scammers Pretend To Buy Gas Station, Hold Amazing Sale, Run Away

A strange gas station scam in Minnesota didn’t hurt customers, exactly: it benefited customers. The scam victim was the owner of the gas station, who thought that they had sold the place to credible new owners. Instead, after a glorious one-day sale with everything in the convenience store half off and gas about forty cents per gallon below the local market price, the sale collapsed. The owner says that the down payment check bounced, the buyers disappeared, and $50,000 in cash was missing…along with the gas and merchandise that local customers pounced on during that too-good-to-be-true sale. [More]

(Ron Dauphin)

Hey Best Buy, If You Want Us To Shop There, Try Selling People Stuff

Michael is buying his mother a new computer for Mother’s Day, because he’s a good son and she’s moving away soon. As long as he was buying a computer, he wanted to get some reward points from Best Buy on his credit card. Only he couldn’t. While the product page bragged of “free shipping,” Best Buy was not willing to ship the item. At all. [More]

Customers Revolt, Make U.K. Pharmacy Chain Stop Sorting Toys By Gender

Customers Revolt, Make U.K. Pharmacy Chain Stop Sorting Toys By Gender

Early on, kids don’t care very much about what they’re supposed to enjoy playing with. Sometimes boys play with trucks, and girls play with sparkly magic wands. It bothers some people when toys are sorted into “Boys” and “Girls” sections, even if they aren’t explicitly labeled as such. But customers of UK pharmacy chain Boots got very upset when they noticed that toy sections had clear pink and blue labels, and a line of scientific exploration toys were only in the “boys” section. The message, detractors said: science isn’t for girls. Perhaps that caring for babies ins’t for boys, either. [More]


Jared Sold Us Two Really Terrible Engagement Ring Settings

Three years ago, it was a beautiful and memorable moment when Greg proposed to his girlfriend and she said “yes.” Only a few hours afterward, something that was memorable for a different reason happened: the rhodium coating on the future Mrs. Greg’s white gold ring wore off, making it look yellow and setting off her nickel allergy. The couple convinced the retailer, Jared, to replace it with platinum, but that didn’t work out so well, either. [More]

Why Does Cinnamon Toast Crunch’s Whole Grain And Sugar Content Differ In A Smaller Box?

Why Does Cinnamon Toast Crunch’s Whole Grain And Sugar Content Differ In A Smaller Box?

Reader IonicBurn noticed something kind of weird over his breakfast cereal this week. He had two different-sized boxes of Cinnamon Toast Crunch, because it’s the best cereal in the world and that’s what his wife happened to pick up. With the boxes side by side, he noticed that the sugar and whole grain content different from one box to the other. Aside from the nutrition discrepancy, the boxes were identical. So how does being in a different box change the nutrition content? [More]

Just Because Sports Authority Says It’s Having A “Sale,” That Doesn’t Make It True

Just Because Sports Authority Says It’s Having A “Sale,” That Doesn’t Make It True

Stephanie saw that there was a sale on Asics sneakers at Sports Authority, and she just happened to be interested in buying some. When she reached the store, she noticed that many of the shoes had “Sale” tags on them, but if you moved those tags aside, this didn’t actually represent a “sale.” [More]

Strictly Speaking, This Party City Sale Sticker Is True, But It’s Still Stupid

Mathemetically, this is true.

Shopping at Party City, Jeff noticed this odd sticker. It advertises discounts of “up to 75% off” and that the item retails at $9.99 and now costs $10. Only that’s not really the confusing part. [More]

The lovely flowers that arrived.

I Ordered Directly From A Local Florist, And It Was Awesome

Why are we still yammering about Valentine’s Day flowers? The holiday itself is long gone, but as birthdays, funerals, hospitalizations, and other occasions come and go, the problems with using national Big Flower websites remain. As another major flower-sending holiday, Mother’s Day, approaches, we’re sharing this story from reader Josh about how wonderfully his order from a local florist turned out. [More]


FTD Salvages Fiancée’s Birthday Present After Florist Tries To Kill Her With Lilies

Sometimes, it doesn’t matter all that much when a florist substitutes in a different flower from the one you ordered, and sometimes it matters very much. In the case of Andy’s fiancée, it’s actually kind of important for her to not get a certain kind of flower, because she’s allergic to it. It’s no fun to get flowers for your birthday if you can’t be in the same room as them. [More]

This ear canal vacuum is fun and healthy!

This Exists: Wax Vac, The Ear Canal Sucking Machine

The best infomercial/direct-response ad products solve problems that you had no idea you had. The Chia Pet? The Topsy Tail? The Shake Weight? The Snuggie? The Comfort WipeAll things that your life would have continued just fine without, but they make so much sense that you simply must have them. We’re not sure that’s the case with the Wax Vac, which combines the glamor of an ear thermometer with all of the fun of sticking an electric sucking machine in your ear while grinning. [More]

This 1-800-Flowers ‘Deluxe Fruit And Gourmet Basket’ Is Some Bruised Fruit, Beef Jerky, And Cheese Nips

Looks tasty.

It’s not that David expected earth-shattering things from a 1-800-Flowers gift basket. He didn’t expect it to look exactly like the photo at left, especially since he ordered a smaller size. He was expecting something that didn’t look like your what lazy bachelor(ette) friend who can’t cook dredged up in the back of their kitchen cabinets to bring to your Super Bowl Party. [More]

FTD Thinks ‘A Different Vase Is OK’ And ‘Change The Flowers Entirely’ Mean The Same Thing

The same thing. Right?

At high-volume times like Valentine’s Day, and at any other time, really, flower-delivery services like FTD reserve the right to substitute something similar if they don’t have the exact item in stock that you want. Mark was upset shortly after Valentine’s Day because he ordered an arrangement that had a purple container, purple flowers, and some white lilies in it. Purple is her favorite color, you see, and lilies are her favorite flower. Isn’t Mark thoughtful? Speaking for the ladies of America, he is. He’s also really mad. [More]

"Crap" was not an option.

More Valentine’s Day Mishaps From Proflowers

Mykel picked out a lovely bouquet for his fiancée from Proflowers, but the lovely and lush bouquet isn’t what showed up on her desk. What she got had a lot fewer flowers than it had looked like on the site. [More]


Florists Hate FTD And Teleflora Even More Than Disappointed Girlfriends Do

As a customer, you see ads from the ancient florist wire services like FTD and Teleflora. Readers write in and complain to us about those specific brands, since that’s the website they visit and the brand name that’s familiar. When you order up some flowers, though, that’s not who brings them to your door. It’s locally-owned florists, small business owners, who actually arrange and deliver your gifts. They might receive orders from the wire services, but often earn no profit or even take a loss on putting it together. [More]

One of these things is greener than the other.

FTD Kicks Off The Valentine’s Day Disappointment Season With Subpar Roses On February 11th

Alex tried to beat the rush. He had a dozen roses delivered to his lady’s workplace on Monday, February 11th, paying $96 for the privilege. Whatever he expected, it was not what appears in the photo that he sent: even properly lit, there’s a lot more green and a lot less luscious red rose in that picture than there should be. [More]

Raiders Of The Lost Walmart Will Take 10 Minutes To Download This Post Over A 56K Modem

Raiders Of The Lost Walmart Will Take 10 Minutes To Download This Post Over A 56K Modem

Among the readers and tipsters of Consumerist are a brave band of explorers on a sacred mission to advance human knowledge. Their quest: to find really, really old crap sitting on the clearance rack at Walmart, and take photos so we can laugh at it. They are the Raiders of the Lost Walmart. Here are their latest finds from the field. [More]


Why Finish Line Can’t Sell Me The Shoes That Are 2 Miles Away, Ships Them From Opposite Coast

“How hard could it be?” Tom asked himself when he set out to use an online-only Finish Line coupon to buy some sneakers. He could stop by his local store and pick the shoes up on his way home from work. Simple! Only not all that simple. It seems like the online and in-store inventory systems of national chain retailers should be integrated, but things are, as they always seem to be in the real world, not that simple. [More]

(Tortuga One)

Why In-Store Pickup Is Kind Of Weird

Jeremy blames the strangeness of his recent electrical cord reel puchase on Sears, but nothing about it was peculiar to that retailer. There was a $20 discrepancy in price for the same item online rather than in the store. Now, few stores price-match online retailers or price-match themselves. What they do offer is in-store pickup for your online order. Jeremy took this to its ridiculous but logical conclusion and purchased his item online, then carried it to the pickup area and out the door. [More]