We’ve got a lot going on here in bakery land, but I wanted to take a quick break to share with you a string of emails between us and a wedding customer of ours.
When we cater weddings we offer rentable cake stands along with the sweets. The catch is that you can’t destroy the stand and you MUST return it within our timeline so that the next client on the list to use it may do so. This, for 8 long years, has gone along swimmingly…until last week. We had a stand returned to us 9 days late and completely destroyed. The client signed a contract stating they’d return the stand to us the day after their wedding and that the stand would be in acceptable condition. It was late. And we deemed it destroyed. Just as the contract stated we could do. So, being a small business who doesn’t have cash to throw around, we charged the client’s credit card for the price to replace the stand.
And that’s when it all went crazy.
Now, for your reading pleasure, the emails regarding the situation:
1st, let me say that the cupcakes you supplied for our wedding and the sales and delivery process handled by Claire we’re absolutely exemplary.
Unfortunately, I’m writing you about an unfortunate situation with the cupcake stand we rented. I’ve been trying to resolve the problem amicably with Jennifer Batchelor, but without success. Please see the email thread below.
I’m hoping that you will be able to step in and help. The cupcake stand was in no way damaged — not even a scratch. We carefully cleaned it and because it came appart easily when we attempted to move it, we gently disassembled it for transport back to your St. Cupcake Galore location. Apparently that was a mistake on our part, but I think it was an understandable and easily remedied mistake. As soon as I heard that there was a problem, I offered to come over and assemble the stand to quickly return it to the same fine condition in which it was delivered to us.
Jennifer refused this offer and has charged our credit card for the full replacement cost of the stand. I find that very inappropriate and have disputed the charge with our credit card company.
Also, since the stand was returned disassembled, I’m happy to pay the late fee of $25 as stated in the contract. I just don’t think it’s fair to have to pay to have the entire stand replaced when it’s not damaged at all.
Thank you for your consideration. We have friends and family getting married over the next year and would really like to be able to recommend your services to them.
The Angry Groom
Hi Angry Groom,
Sorry to hear about your troubles with the cupcake stand contract.
The problem here is twofold: first, the stand was returned 9 days late. We made repeated attempts to contact you. We had the stand booked out to another wedding. We had to purchase a new stand so that we could fulfill an obligation to other customers. Had the stand been returned to us from you at the agreed upon time (stated in the contract and signed by you,) then this would not have been an issue.
And then the stand is eventually returned to us, in a paper grocery bag. Your wedding ribbon still adhered, and in pieces. We had the stand built for us - to our sturdy and stout specifications - and in no way whatsoever was it meant to be disassembled.
I appreciate your offer to reassemble the damaged stand, but that isn’t what the contract stated. We never agreed that if you the customer returned the stand late, destroyed, that it would be acceptable for you to come and fix it for us. What we agreed was that you would return the stand ON TIME so that we’d be able to continue to do business with other customers and that you’d return it in a condition to make that possible. This you did not do. You did not hold up your end of the contract.
If your credit card company needs copies of the contract you signed please let us know and we will gladly provide them, with the sections pertaining to this situation clearly highlighted.
We provide contracts for stand rentals so that our interests can be protected. And while it is disturbing and sad to read that your next step is to alter your friend’s and family’s perception of our business as a result of this situation, I have to accept that as your choice. But in the interest of Saint Cupcake, I really must stick to the contract you agreed to and signed.
Insert several more emails here to our Weddings and Events Specialist. Also insert several Yelp reviews, Twitter comments and Facebook shout outs. All extraordinarily negative and not representative of the actual truth. The Angry Groom failed to do what he said he would - he signed a contract and he did not hold up his end of that contract yet wants me to bend over and take it. Sorry, Angry Groom. Not gonna happen.
Because there’s not enough time in this life to continue to go round and round with The Angry Groom and because his daily slanderous comments were starting to take a toll on my staff, I made the tough decision to refund his money. A cleansing. A burning of the sage. A ridding myself of his twisted lies.
The receipt detailing his refund was sent along with this letter:
Dear Angry Groom:
As you can see from the accompanying attachment, I refunded $220 to your credit card today, May 21, 2013.
Make no mistake, we are well aware that we are under zero obligation to refund any amount of money to your card but are doing so because we can no longer afford the drain you are continuing to put on our resources both mental and otherwise. If you have any additional confusion as to the contract that you signed it is attached for your review.
What is perhaps most unfortunate is the fact that you will take nothing away from this situation but the knowledge that incomplete truths, harassment and slander will get you exactly what you want.
I trust that this will be our final correspondence. In addition I request that emails to Jennifer Batchelor now cease as well.
Wishing you every happiness,
NOTE: We DO NOT want the stand returned to us. Please keep it as a token of your wedding day and of the hours you spent spreading lies about the responsibilities you agreed to when signing our contract.
Note to humans: Take responsibility for your actions. It will make you a better person.