Yesterday I got an email from PayPal saying that a charge was made for the Salt Life webstore and I didn’t think much of it. I’ve done some shopping on Amazon and thought maybe I purchased something from a vendor there, though I was pretty sure I hadn’t purchased anything from Salt Life. It was a relatively small charge so I thought I’d investigate once I got home from Madilyn’s Christmas party.
Then five minutes later, I got another email from PayPal saying that there had been a nearly $500 charge to a Lowe’s in Colonie, NY. At that point, I kicked into high gear, fled the scene of the party, and tried fervently to dispute the charge with PayPal. Because my PayPal account is connected to my bank account, I wanted to make sure the charge never went from “pending” to “complete” because that was the difference between the money being held in my bank account to being actually gone.
PayPal to the Rescue?
I couldn’t do anything online because the charge was still pending so I called PayPal. After a 44 minute wait, they got on the phone, cancelled my PayPal Debit Card, and gave me the rundown on how this whole thing had to go. Basically, the charge had to go from pending to complete in order for me to be able to file a dispute which is the biggest load of horse crap I’ve ever heard in my life. They said that they would put the funds back in my PayPal account once the dispute resolution was filed, but that does me literally NO good considering the fact that the funds would ultimately come out of my bank account and I had no access to a PayPal debit card. I hung up from PayPal trying to decide if I should let the transaction complete or if I should call my bank and have them cancel the payment. The problem with that option is that I have a lot of automatic payments that come out of PayPal that would have to be changed and I was trying to make this process as easy as possible.
My gears start turning
Then I remembered that the charge had been from a specific Lowe’s store, not a web order. PayPal had told me it was a web order, but I realized that if it had a Lowe’s store number attached, these thieves probably ordered online and had chosen “store pick-up” instead of having the items shipped to their home.
I called the Lowe’s store in Colonie, NY which wound up actually being in Albany. I got a young sounding customer service guy who tried to tell me to call my bank. I realized nice Summer was going to have to die for a second and assertive Summer had to come out to play. I said to him before he could even finish:
Listen, I’ve already called my bank. What I’m trying to tell you is that I believe someone made a web order and plan to pick the shit up in your store and I wanted to notify your store so that when they come in to pick the shit up someone is there to intercept them.
Apparently profanity gets the job done because the lightbulb went off in his head and he was like, “ooooooh, let me get loss prevention on the line!”
Good idea, dude.
A nice sounding woman answered the phone and nice Summer returned for the conversation. I explained the situation again, told her I live in Florida, and she was like, “Oh my gawd.” in her best upstate New York accent. She got my name and phone number then I told her the amount of the purchase. She said, “Is it a Master Card ending in XXXX?” and I said, “Yep!” and she was like, “I have the charge right here, it was a web order, and they did select in-store pickup.”
VICTORY! She said they would cancel the order and when I asked if I should call the local police, she said I could for my own personal reasons if I felt like it, but that they would take care of it on their end.
No, I didn’t ask what they tried to buy. No, I didn’t ask for them to call me when the people came to pick up their shit, but I should have. I was far too proud of myself for figuring the situation out to bother with those important details.
The resolution is that the charge is still pending but it won’t ever go through as complete because the transaction is cancelled. I’m kind of disappointed in myself for not calling the police to warn them, or for asking Lowe’s to call me back once the thieves were caught, but I’ll get over it.
As for the thieves, I’m sorry they’re going through whatever it is they’re going through that made them feel the need to steal from a family at Christmastime. I hope that this year brings much better things for them and that they make better choices or get whatever help they need to learn to be productive law abiding citizens.
PayPal can kiss my rear end, and Lowe’s – thanks for working with me to get this resolved. I hope that’s the most exciting that happens at your store for the rest of the year.