The Sausage Party that is Guitar Center

Wednesday, January 7, 2009 |

Peeps- prepare yo selves. I am about to vent. I am enraged. I am surprised I am still speaking to my father since he is a man. 

So......after a bajillion years of wanting to get a guitar and saying it was in my plans....I am finally going to do it. I am not going to get some super nice guitar as was my plan many years ago. All my money(and more happy Visa money) got spent on school. Surprise!!! But I did get a Christmas check allocated toward getting me a crappy guitar to at least have something to learn on. YAY!

But secretly inside I knew what it really was preventing me from getting a guitar. In the world of crappy cheapo guitars I really want to see and hear the one I buy. Ebay and Craigslist are then OUT. So my only real option is ........gag......Guitar Center. They have the most selection. The inevitability of having to spend even one moment of time in Guitar Center trying to actually get helped by their oh-so-full-of-themselves employees was what was really keeping me from making my purchase. 

Let us make some sweeping and stereotypical assumptions about these Guitar Center employees so you know what I am talking about in case you haven't experienced the wonder for yourselves. 

1) He is a male. 99.95% of their employees are males. 
2) He is in a band that has not made it quite yet. 
3) He has no educational pursuits. College is for tools. 
4) He dresses for work as if making himself look like a rock star or tragically unappreciated grungy acoustic player was the only thing to prove he knows what he is talking about. But he will bore you to DEATH by showing off his talent in case you missed the outfit.  
5) He will jam out by himself on the merchandise and ignore you completely unless his manager is watching or you touch something expensive. Then he will annoy you to DEATH. 
6) There will be 50 employees in the store standing around watching you from across the room but the one you need to talk to in your instrument section is ALWAYS already jamming with someone. ALWAYS. And those other 50 employees are totally and completely incapable of stepping out from their areas to assist you. Even on a Wednesday at 11am when there are no freaking customers but you and the one other guy jamming with Mr. Helpful.
Here is another thing you need to know. That you don't know anything. Inevitably you will need a piece of equipment or an accessory that is hidden better than the holy grail ever was. You cannot really function in the store without the help of one of these jerks unless you are making a really basic purchase.  

And now we will enter into my actual experience today at GC

So I head into the acoustic section. Score 1 point for me that I don't have to get a map or ask the Nikki Sixx wannabe (who I couldn't get away from and couldn't stop looking at- he was freaking me out with his awesome hair)or one of his 6 fellow employees who are behind the Electric counter. OF COURSE once I get to acoustics there is one employee whom we shall call Toolio and he is sitting on some boxes jamming with some old dude in a band. He doesn't even acknowledge I have entered his sacred lair. So like 5 minutes pass and finally I walk up and say I need some help. When you have time of course.  The jammer says - go help her I'm just messing around here. Ha. As if I needed him to tell me that. No one sits around jamming forever if they're actually going to buy today. So Toolio is all ......OK what are you looking for?

I tell him I play viola, I want to learn guitar, from the little I know about guitars I know that I want a 6-string acoustic smallish and a darker color. Also I tell him I prefer a used instrument. I do not believe in buying new instruments. It comes from being a viola player. I want a well loved, used guitar. That is how I roll. 

So he proceeds to tell me that they just got in a shipment of guitars that are perfect for beginners. Toolio doesn't look me in the eye. This worries me. I think to myself"Please don't take me over to the stack of little girl's hot pink daisy guitars!!" 

Toolio then proceeds to a stack of boxes of shiny new guitars and rips open a new light yellow monstrosity. We shall call it Big Banana. I turn and look at him with my "You've got to be kidding me look". He ignores said look. He then starts jamming out on Big Banana. And keeps on jamming. Obviously he is looking for compliments. He is not going to get them. I start talking over his playing. SOOOOO Toolio, do you have anything else more like what I asked for? Toolio stops. How do you like the sound of this guitar? Ummmm....It's nice.... I say. This is a great value. They won't last long he says.  I give him a "What are you smoking? look." I think to myself "Seriously? You want me to believe Yamaha won't keep making new guitars? Riiiiight

So he hands me Big Banana. I awkwardly strum the monster guitar that I can barely hold in my arms. (Hmmmmm......sudden thought! Maybe it's their lack of breasts that keep these men from understanding why I don't want, and feel awkward holding the huge guitars!) So anyways I give it the old college try and tell him- well I really can't play AT ALL which is what I told you but I fully agree the sound is great. BUT do you have anything used and smaller and darker? 

So Toolio tells me they don't have anything used(liar) and then goes off about how I need to get a new guitar and make it my own and scratch it up myself and that's how everyone starts out. I give him the "Whatever you're selling I ain't buying" look. So he walks me over to an Ibanez that is a different style and smaller size. He jams out for a minute and says can you tell the sound quality is not as good? I say Yes I Can. But I like the size better. 

He then shows me to the wall of acoustic electrics and suggests them for a better size, but I need to spend more money. I say I understand they cost more. Toolio then turns to ask jammer man if he needs anything(obviously Toolio is bored with me) and jammer says yeah man....I'm gonna check out I guess. So Toolio asks what he wants to buy and he buys PICKS. PICKS I tell you. I was getting ignored and delayed and having to wait during the endless jam for a PICK purchase?? They soooo didn't roll like this at Brook Mays I thought to myself. No hours of jamming on their instruments with no intent to buy. And the employees were .....helpful. Imagine that. You'd never have to interrupt any employee at Brook Mays during a jam session or a rocking solo to force them to help you. But I digress. I continue to wander the acoustic room at GC. Still carting around Big Banana waiting for Toolio to come back and take it and box it again. Big Banana needs to go back to his home. I see a female employee walk in and I am so excited that Toolio wised up and sent in a girl that I can barely contain myself. But she goes over to the counter and makes some calls that reveal she is in the financing department. Of course. I should have guessed. Finally I set BB on his box and walk to the front and see that the jammer is long gone and Toolio is just chillin with his fellow tools in the toolbox. And I then storm out. Seriously. If I had received even one iota of helpful assistance he would have most likely sold me a guitar. And now once again I am swearing off Guitar Center. What a Hellhole. What a Toolbox. What a MotherFlippin Sausage Party.  

I am so getting a guitar off ebay now.  Grrrrrrrrrrrr.


Alison said...

Toolio!? HA! That was wonderful to read. :) Sorry you had to deal with such jerk faces. I'll loan you my brother if you have to go back to Guitar Center. He's really good at getting what he needs from those idiots.

Rhia Jean said...

Wow. That is similar to my experience of trying to pick out a scanner at Best Buy. Yours was better though. It almost makes me want to go pretend shopping at Guitar Center and act like a total witch...just for kicks.

The Moffitt's said...

Chris says to look it up online and decide what u want then go play it at guitar center then buy it online. He agrees their cs sucks big time. The guitar he bought--they didn't want to show it to him either. Also try a pawn shop. There's also a guitar store in Garland off Garland road but can't remember exactly where. Do a google or drive 635 east exit garland and head towards garland high school. Good luck!!

Molly said...

I didn't even get past the title without cracking up. I LOVE YOU!!! Sausage party is sooooo something that I would say. Why don't we hang out more!?!??!

Bethany & Huey said...

Haha! I love reading your blog!