After spending several months researching the internet and electronics stores for 3D HD TVs, I was finally ready to upgrade from my lousy Sharp standard television. I had narrowed my selection down to two models from the same brand (Samsung). One of these models was not on display in any of the 2-3 Best Buy store locations that I visited. On this particular occasion, I had about 30 minutes before an appointment, so I decided to pop into Best Buy Store #109 (11301 W Pico Boulevard in West Los Angeles). All I wanted to do was ask a clerk to pull up an image, on one of their computers, of the model in question, so that I could see an image larger than that on my mobile phone, the latter of which was too small to get a good idea of the TV's aesthetics. It was a Sunday, so I knew it would be busy, but I didn't think my inquiry would take more than a few minutes and, as I mentioned previously, I had a half-hour to kill. Every clerk seemed to be busy, not necessarily with customers, as I saw two or three clerks and one or two managers(?) huddled over a workstation. At the neigboring workstation, a strapping young black clerk was ringing up a purchase for a pretty little white damsel in very tight shorts (or, perhaps, it was a low skirt - I tried not to ogle her). Although the clock was ticking, I took a place in line behind the customer and patiently stood there, awaiting my opportunity to make my inquiry. As I waited patiently, looking back-and-forth between the clerk ringing up the customer and the group huddled over the other workstation, an older customer approached the workstations from behind me and, as if she did not see me waiting there, and with an air of authority, pushed her shopping cart up until it rested beside me and, in a pushy manner, asked if a clerk could help her pull an item from a shelf. Well, not one clerk looked up at her or responded to her request. The huddled group continued their huddling. At this point, I grew peeved, not only at the store employees but also at this this customer, who had the nerve to demand something with utter disregard for other waiting customers like myself. Of course, this is a typical situation in Los Angeles. Angelenos always think they're too special to have to stand in line and wait their turn. I digess. Anyway, I heard her mutter something like: "I don't know who's working here. I guess I'm the only one working." I was about to respond, but I held my tongue. Then, when there was a silent pause with the huddled group, she repeated her request and, as the huddled group began to disperse, one of them agreed to help her. I suppose I must have still been wearing my invisibility cloak. While continuing to wait there ever so patiently, as the young customer ahead of me asked a couple of questions, I noticed the clerk look up at her and, then, at me. We actually made eye contact. After the transaction was complete, and the clerk sent his customer on her merry way, without looking up at me or, in any other way, acknowledging my presence or, even, referring me to another sales clerk, he abruptly turned his back and walked to the back of the store, exiting through the doors at the back. I stood there, absolutely flabbergasted, wildly staring around and wondering what just happened and who was going to help me now. I waited a minute or two, then began storming off toward the front entrance. On my way out, however, I decided to make another attempt with a clerk in a different department. As if my customer experience wasn't bad enough, it got worse. Now, as previously mentioned, I have spent hours researching my potential purchase on the internet. After I decided on the particular TV model that I wanted, I checked Best Buy's website to verify that it was available and to see an image of the model (since no physical store had an in-store display model). Upon a search for that specific model, a list of results appeared, but the model for which I specifically searched was not listed at the top. For some reason, I had to scroll down toward the middle of the page to find that model. At any rate, I know that it was listed on the Best Buy website. Well, after providing the exact model number to the clerk, he tried searching for it on their website, but he didn't see it. I told him to scroll further down but, to a Best Buy clerk, I am just a simpleton who knows nothing about technology and the internet, and they are clearly top experts in the field of technology, so he dismissed my instruction and continued to search various web pages for the item. At one point, I told him to just forget it as, by now, my half-hour was up and I needed to leave in order to make my appointment in time. He told me to hold on, so he could try one other thing. I waited, only to have him turn to me and assert: "That model is not on the Best Buy website; I can't find it anywhere". I thanked him for checking and quickly made my way toward the exit. When I reached my car, I pulled out my mobile phone and performed a quick search on bestbuy.com, entering the model number just as the clerk had entered it in the store. I scrolled down the list and, lo and behold, there was the exact model that I requested, just as I had seen it when I previously searched, before my visit to the store. Yes, I'm just an average customer with little - or no - internet/technological experience . . . at least to Best Buy, that is. On my way out of the store, who do you think I found sitting at the front entrance, carrying on a casual conversation with another Best Buy employee? That's right - none other than the same black stud who was previously helping the pretty little white thing. And, although I did not eavesdrop, I can venture to guess (and I bet I would be right) as to the topic of their conversation. Needless to say, and as my headline implies, Best Buy Store #109 lost a $3000 sale, as I made my purchase - that same day - at another store, where I received top-notch customer service. If it weren't for the attentiveness I received at the other store, I would have made my purchase from an online retailer. On a side note, when I previously visited the same store location and inquired about another model, the sales rep in the Magnolia Home Theater Department directed me to search for it "on the main floor" as, according to her, that particular brand would only be on display there. When I then asked a clerk on the main floor, he told me that particular model was available only through the Magnolia Home Theater Department, and I should look there for a display model! One of these days, corporations are going to realize and remember how important good customer service is to . . . the customer! Until then, I hope they continue to see their sales drop and scratch their heads, wondering why they no longer have regular customers or why their sales/stocks are not as strong as they should be.