Yesterday my electric kettle done up and died, had the biscuit, bought the farm, went for the kippers. It was about ten years old so I really couldn’t get too cranky about it. I performed the appropriate solemn rite over the late kettle and turfed it into the garbage.
As is my wont, I did a little research online and found a lovely assortment of electric kettles available at my local Canadian Tire store. Conveniently located in a nearby shopping centre to which I was planning on visiting anyway.
I arrived at Canadian Tire and, having used my morning’s research to its fullest capacity, I knew I needed to stroll over to aisle 11. Sure enough there they were: silver kettles, black kettles, white kettles. A regular Smörgåsbord of kettles from which to choose. I checked out a few then decided on a Sunbeam model that was very similar to the one that had gone kaput and was available for a decent price. So off I went to pay for my new kettle and continue with my other chores.
Upon arrival at home, I wanted to boil the kettle a few times to get the factory taste and gunk out. I opened the box and withdrew the kettle. I noticed that the contents of the box were packed in somewhat like a well-played game of Tetris. There was not a millimeter of extra space in that carton.
I put the kettle aside and went in search of the power base. Only to be disappointed. No power base was present, no means of plugging the kettle into an electrical outlet existed. How could they have been so stupid, so dim-witted as to package a kettle without including the power base? Given the tight fit in the packing, this was clearly a box that was not meant to hold a power base. Evidently, I had purchased a ‘replacement’ kettle. Why did it not indicate that on the box?
Somewhat irked I called the number on the user manual. After the usual wait – I was so glad my call was important to them – I got a person on the line. I calmly went through the whole experience and she took the model number and asked me to wait for a moment. That was some 24-hours ago so I guess I’m technically still on hold with them, except for the fact that I hung up after several minutes, thinking I would have to return the kettle regardless of what she may tell me.
I packed up my new kettle in the Tetris-like manner I had received it and, later in the afternoon made my way back to Canadian Tire. I approached the returns desk, plunked my bag on the counter with my receipt and Canadian Tire money and started to unpack things while explaining my gripe.
“I bought this here this morning but there is no power source,” I started but before I could finish the nice lady cut me off. She said knowingly “yes there is”.
I looked at her as she casually opened the box and removed two pieces of tape that were holding down the kettle lid and lo and behold there was the power base. Just like the neck and giblets in a frozen turkey, except the turkey packaging clearly indicates there are parts inside. I looked at her and asked if she had seen this before to which she rolled her eyes and said it happens all the time with this product.
Why would they put the power source in the f*%#ing kettle but not mention it on the box, (as I have suggested above) or in the user manual?
This packaging and lack of instruction is nothing short of diabolical. Thank you Sunbeam Canada for a fine kettle, but a really bad lack of communication!