Made in the USA or… Ode to my White Corner Shelf Unit

In this troubled economy, it seems to have become popular here in the U.S. to “buy American.” Now, I think it’s ideal and patriotic (and all that crap) to buy stuff that says “Made in the USA” whenever possible… However, apparently the mere EXISTENCE of these words on the package of a product, does NOT necessarily ensure that the product is of better quality than something that says: “Made in China.”

Recently I purchased a white, corner shelf unit to put in my dining room. Ohhhh, White-Corner-Shelf-Unit, how I’ve longed for this day when you and I would be united and you would stand up for me in the corner of my dining room and I could place lovely little knick-knacks upon your surfaces! You will make my dining room look like a page out of ‘Martha Stuart’s Living’, and I, in kind, promise to dust you, and clean you and protect you from children, pets or vacuum cleaners that might color on, spill on, scratch, chip or ding you.

OK, sorry to be so dramatic, but it is imperative that you understand the extent to which I have pined for this shelving unit. I dream of it… how perfectly it will complete the room. It is my passion. It is my madness. The day finally comes. I find it! I have a gift card! I purchase it! I take it home! I can’t wait to put it together! I collect and purchase JUST THE RIGHT bric-a-brac in which to place on the shelves once it’s assembled! I open the box! I slide out the contents! I locate the pieces! I read the directions! I do not see all of the pieces! What the #@%$?!?! How can this be? How can it be MISSING pieces? I PAID for it, did I not?

It was enclosed in a box, on the shelf of a reputable store, IN AMERICA! This IS America, after all, land of plenty. Meaning, there are PLENTY of foreign-made goods for us all! Let me be honest… I don’t REALLY care where it comes from, just so long as I can decorate the rooms of my dwelling with calm assurance that the purchased item will look just like it does on the box. America: We want It = We seek It = We find It = We buy It = We have It! How can this be happening? It is an outrage. It. Is. An. Injustice.

This is really terrible. My parents are coming over later this evening to see this thing assembled and adorned, and for crying out loud… My mom made BROWNIES! Now I will have nothing to show them… nothing but an empty corner with a stray ball of cat-hair in it… sort of reminds me of a tumble-weed blowing down a long, lonely desert road.

Several heavy sighs and slanderous-remarks-about-the-incompetent-retail-chain later, defeated, and with slumped shoulders, I pack up the box with the pieces that ARE there, and start to re-calculate my game plan. As if peering into a crystal ball… I can see my future… an agitated phone call to customer service (waiting on hold for at least 10 minutes)… an angry rummage to find the blasted receipt (IF I still even have it!!)… A trip BACK to the store (wasted gas money)…

So I’m angrily SHOVING pieces back INTO the box, packing it up and calling my Formerly-Cherished-White-Corner-Shelf-Unit all kinds of nasty names and I think I happen to include the phrase “stupid-Made-in-China-piece-of-crap”… when I happen to notice stamped right on the bottom of the box: “Made in the USA.”


10 thoughts on “Made in the USA or… Ode to my White Corner Shelf Unit

  1. JT says:

    Ouch! Not the kind of testimony to the good ole U.S.A. we like and yet the tragedy is it is all too common. Yes the China crap is missing pieces as well sometimes …but we want to believe that if it is made in the USA that it is a superior product! Oy it’s time for a nap, maybe the piece will magically appear while you sleep 🙂

  2. Great job putting into words what we have probably all experienced. Soooo maddening to find that “one and only” purchase that you have so looked forward to…only to find it is defective!!
    A little side note about not getting what you pay for…be careful at WalMart that you actuallly GET your purchased bags of items while pulling them off of the circular turnstyle. I had a feeling everything was NOT in the 2 bags I pulled off and sure enough, I was missing three items. GRRRR. We had to go back to the shelves, get our items, and visit the customer service dept. Boo Hiss.

  3. Precisely why I hate flat pack furniture. Whatever happened to the good old days of purchasing items already assembled and delivered in this form? I miss them.

  4. Honestly, I didn’t expect this when I read the title for your post. The post seems to be informative at first, but it end up in something that give me an empathy.

    I’ve experienced this once when I bought a corner shelf from a local furniture store. It has ‘Made in the USA’ printed on the back. But a rubber base is missing from the package. Fortunately, the store give me a replacement.

    Your closing line made me laugh. Thanks for a great post.

    • Thank you Jennifer! I am glad you liked it and it is nice to “meet” a new reader. I look forward to checking out! Thank you for stopping by and reading and commenting. I hope we “see” one another some more. 🙂 Glad you got a laugh!

  5. It’s probably some kind of scam, as in the BOX that contained the thing was made in the USA–or more likely, the STICKER the placed on the hunk of junk was made in the USA.

  6. Mychele says:

    Back when people didn’t like buying things Made in Japan, remember when they made all sorts of electronics, the Japanese built a factory town and named it Usa. They didn’t lie – it was made in usa!

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