I would like to have a bit of rant (and you poor people have to listen). Since I am single, I am the one who needs to go to the big box home building stores for things that need purchasing for my home. I am happy to ask for help and directions-no shame at all. This past summer I was landscaping my back yard and needed to be at the local HD store quite a few times. One day I was there four times and the staff were starting to greet me as a long lost friend. I'd rather be that well known at the LYS (local yarn store) than about bags of rather 'aromatic' fertilizer and gravel. But they were usually quite helpful once I was fortunate enough to find a staff who wasn't being run off their feet, this being a new construction neighborhood. Yesterday I went to the store on my lunch break to try and pick up a programmable thermostat. I asked three different staff people, in the section where the last person had directed me, and was given different directions. However, after I was able to find the thermostats, there was no programmable ones left for natural gas but rather for the electric baseboard heaters. Once I was in the right area, the last two male sales associates came by and looked at me with something like pity or disdain. They could obviously tell that I was searching for the right thing and wasn't having any success. Seriously, do they think that I don't know what raised eyebrows, whispering between themselves and lack of eye contact mean? Hah! I work with people and know what those not-so-subtle signs mean. The thing that gets to me is that women are the ones who spend almost 80% of the family's budget-has no one ever read their yahoo websites with all those helpful tips? Usually I go right up to them and ask again and again until they see the value in helping me. (It's really hard to ignore a positive but persistent female who keeps on asking!) I decided that I couldn't be bothered to ask these guys again and will be taking my business to another big box retailer today before going into work. A big box home store on a Saturday. Oh the blissful thought of those crowds purchasing all the shelves and organizers to fulfill their January organizing resolutions. Excuse me while I go to drink copious amounts of coffee and knit a few rounds on my latest knitting project to calm my heart and give me the bravery to go through the ordeal again.