Caught in the Amazon jungle … of returns

Me: (opens email, first message reads “Details on your Amazon order FDS436578”) Babe? What did you order on Amazon?

Wife: Oh just some boots for the girls. Don’t worry though, they’re probably going back.

Me: What do you mean they’re probably going back? They haven’t even gotten here yet.

Wife: My mom is sending some boots for them. I want to see which ones I like better.

Me: Why is your default mechanism to buy it instead of just waiting?

Wife: Just … don’t question me, okay? I know what I’m doing.

Three days later, Amazon box of boots sits on chair where I usually sit at kitchen table

Me: BABE! What is going on with this box?

Wife: Oh, you can return it. I like the ones my mom sent better.

Me: I’m sorry, I can return it?

Wife: (makes puppy dog eyes)

Me: (forcefully grabs box) Gimmie this thing … where’s the computer? 

I go into office to use printer and execute return

Me: (yelling because wife is in different room, likely ordering another product that will soon be returned from her iPad) Babe? What is the reason for the return?

Wife: I don’t know … just say we don’t need it.

Me: If we use that reason, they charge us for return shipping.

Wife: Well, what are the other options?

Me: There are like 20 of them and I’m not screaming them all to you.

Wife: What about, “We like it, but we found something better and cheaper.”

Me: If we use that one then it prompts me to tell them where and at what price. How about this one: “Ordered by my wife after she asked my mother-in-law to ship the same exact thing except better and at no cost.”

Wife: Hardy har. Just say it doesn’t fit.

Me: This doesn’t feel ethical. What if the boot company alters its entire sizing chart to account for our feedback?

Wife: I don’t know … what should we do?

Me: Oh geez, I have things to do. I’m just choosing “doesn’t fit.” There. Now I need to go to confession. (prints return label)

Wife: (walks into office, looks at printer) Why is this printing in color? I NEED THAT INK FOR MY WORK STUFF!

Me: I told you, I can't figure out how to print in black and white from the computer for some reason.

Wife: Ugh! Do you know how expensive ink is?

Me: I do. And may I remind you that it was not my idea to order these boots in the first place.

Wife: It’s printing twice! What is happening?

Me: Amazon requires one return label on the box and one in the box. I know this because I find myself doing Amazon returns all the time.

Wife: Isn’t Amazon in Phoenix? Couldn’t you just drop this off to them like, before work or whatever instead of printing all this stuff out?

Me: I’m going to pretend that suggestion was not just made. Where’s the tape? I need to get this label on the box. (finds a roll of tape, grabs it)

Wife: Not my work tape!

Me: I can’t even right now.

One week later

Me: (opens email, first message reads “Return on Amazon order FDS436578 has been processed!”) Cool. (second message reads, “Details on your Amazon order PDC332876”) BABE!

Note: This column appears in the 1/9 issue of The Glendale Star and the 1/10 issue of the Peoria Times.