Thursday, July 3, 2008

Stroller Nazis and Small Towns

So now that we have moved (don't panic-- we're still in Little Rock, still in the same ward--we just upgraded our 1 bedroom apartment to a 2 bedroom apartment), Rob is home from all of his meetings, we're done travelling, and the Board results are in (PHEW! NO wonder June was a crazy month for us!!!), I have finally had time to start getting a little prepared for the little one soon to occupy that extra bedroom we went to all the trouble to get. I found a GREAT deal on the BabyBjorn Babysitter (basically a baby swing), and ordered a Mei Tai. I am SUPER excited about this little gem--if you like it, check and see if they're still on clearance SALE (although, I do have to say that I really debated THIS carrier also: enter code MOMMIES at checkout to get a 20% discount), and have since been very busy researching diapers and running strollers (hey, these are some serious decisions). So serious, that I'd really like to actually SEE (and maybe even push it, and I don't know, try out the folding mechanisms, etc) said running stroller prior to purchase. This is where I run into a problem. I live in Little Rock, Arkansas. Little Rock is a small town. And apparently, they don't like to run. There is NO place to buy a running stroller in town. Sure, there's the "athletic strollers" available at Academy Sports. But nothing worthy of being called a "running stroller". So after internet research, I've been calling selected manufacturers to ask them about their products, learn if it's really going to be the right stroller for me, right fit, what are the exact dimensions when folded, handle bar height, etc etc. Then I go home and drive Rob crazy making him stand with his arms out in space while I run around him with the tape measure "recreating" a virtual stroller. And, No, this isn't just pregnancy hormones; I really AM this obsessive about all things running(THIS is the lovely one I'm truly dreaming of). Well, today I thought I had a breakthrough. I called the manufacturer of Bob strollers, to be told that there was a Little Rock shop that actually carried their products. I was overjoyed at the prospec that I might actually get to see at least ONE of the strollers I was interested in, and rushed out during my lunch break to see the goods. Upon entering the shop, I asked if they carried the Bob Ironman (keep in mind that 20 minutes prior to this conversation, the manufacturer of the product had told me this is the only one of their products I should consider for the type of running I was talking about doing with it).
"No," says the shop attendant, "We carry a BETTER stroller."
Me: "Well, I'm looking for a running stroller"
Shop attendant: "Well, this is what you really want. I'll show you why. The front wheel swivels. See?"
Me: "No, I don't want a swivel wheel. Do you have one with a fixed wheel?"
Shop attendant(raising voice): "NO, the SWIVEL wheel is BETTER! It's better for running! It's better for walking. It willl turn easily. You don't have the strength to handle a fixed wheel."
I'm eyeing his obviously hasn't-been-on-a-run-in-twenty-years figure, and feeling really dubious about taking any type of running advice from such an obvious non-runner.
Me: "No, I'd really like a fixed wheel."
Shop attendant(getting angry): "I know a guy who ran the Boston Marathon pushing this stroller! This is the BEST running stroller on the market!"
Rather than informing him that Boston does not allow strollers in their marathon, or that the manufacturer had just told me this model was not intended for running, or even pointing out the obvious fact that he was alienating a potential customer by insisting that I did not know what I wanted, I threw my hands up defensively, said "Wow! A little TOO agressive." and left. I don't think I'll shop there again. Scary Stroller Nazi.


Emilee said...

everyone always has to give their 2 cents on what you and your baby NEED. it def gets annoying. are you planning a dallas trip now/ if so, i'm in. :) otherwise i can ask my neighbor if he can order a baby jogger or bob if you want.

Lou said... has some of the BOB strollers at a 10% discount, if you don't mind ordering online.