I've been a customer of your Target photo lab for a number of years, now - the prints I make for cards and framing come from your machines, and until last evening, I can honestly say I've never had a complaint, and indeed, have been more than happy with your products and services.
Last evening, however, I must admit to leaving one of your stores in a somewhat less than gruntled state, Target.
I entered the Target in Buford, Georgia, at 6:25 PM, intent upon printing some photographs. Granted, I usually use another store, but I was in Buford and really wanted the prints to mount last night so I could ship them in the morning. When I approached the Target photo lab, the woman there informed me that the one-hour service I was hoping to use was closed. It closes at seven, she told me.
And, she said, I have to shut the machine down and it take a little while so I started it now so it would be shut down by seven.
Uh-huh. So I'm thinking, the sign should read that the service closes at six-thirty, then. I just sigh. She goes on to say that I can do instant printing if I want. It costs a little more, but it's still open, or I can leave the order to be printed tomorrow.
Instant print it is. I slide the disc in and select the prints I want to make, go thorough all the choices I need to make, and start the printing.
Hurrah, I think, I will be able to mount and mail these babies before the weekend!
Umm...not so much.
The prints were horrible. Not in a "Oh, I thought the picture was a good one, but look, it turns out I can't photograph worth a damn" horrible but more like "These looked fine when I had them printed before, but now they look blurry and washed out like the machine's been on a bender and can't be bothered right now" horrible.
And the photo maven has conveniently disappeared. Oh, wait, there she is, hiding behind some carts.
She ever-so-cheerfully asked me if the prints looked OK.
No...no they did not, I replied. They look washed out, blurry, pixelated and generally awful and I can't use them.
Oh, she replied, yeah...she really didn't like using that machine because it printed like an ink-jet printer and not a real photo machine, and prints usually turned out looking a little funny.
Well, gee sugar, could you have maybe mentioned that before you wasted my time and this paper? Thinking, not saying...
She went on to tell me that she wouldn't charge me...which I thought terribly generous of her seeing as how I couldn't use them in the first place...
I thought about being angry...annoyed, even, Target.
I mean...am I unreasonable, Target, to expect that, when your own sign says a product or service is available until 7 PM, it actually will be available until 7 PM, and not until six-thirty PM so it's shut down by 7 PM? Am I out of line, here?
Is it wrong, Target, to expect your photo lab employees to have reasonable knowledge of the differences between processing methods, and that when they're informed that high quality prints are desired, directing a customer to a piece of crap printer that is no better than one at home is probably not the best course of action? And then, telling that customer that they are magnanimously allowing the customer to keep the useless prints will not likely engender feelings of warm fuzziness. I'm just saying, Target...I'm just saying...
Yes, I though of being angry...but then I laughed, target. I laughed. Because, Target, I realized that, while I didn't have my prints, and would now be delayed in finishing and shipping them...I had something just as good.
You, Target, provided me with blog fodder!