The ideal kitchen, shown on my favorite channel, HGTV, has granite countertops and stainless steel appliances. So of course, when our refrigerator died, I really wanted to go with stainless.
Unfortunately, stainless is a lot pricier than white. Looking for a way to manage this on a budget, I hit upon a scheme to get a free refrigerator. I wrote to GE and asked for one.
I am not making any of this up. Here is a copy of the letter I sent:
Mr. Jeffrey R. Immelt
GE Chairman of the Board
Dear Mr. Immelt,
I have had my GE refrigerator for about 23 years. My husband and I bought it when we got our first house and it has been a dependable workhorse. But it is getting old. The little gizmo that tells the refrigerator the door is open broke off about 10 years ago and we have been in the dark ever since. The drawers are half broken. The time has come to say goodbye.
I have a replacement all picked out. Of course it’s a GE product. I am in love with one of your refrigerators. Not just any refrigerator, but the GE Profile Energy Star 22.2 Cu.Ft. stainless bottom-freezer model PFS22SBSSS – the one without the ice-maker. We have a little kitchen and this will actually fit in the small space I have.
“Great!” You say. “We like people to be in love with our appliances. What’s the problem?”
I can’t afford it. I have GE Profile refrigerator tastes and a dorm fridge budget.
“Oh” You say, not as warmly as before. “Sorry, but what do you expect us to do about that?”
I’d like you to give me one.
I have a wonderful husband and two, fantastic teenage girls. But if it were just about us, I wouldn’t ask. No, I’d get the $300 model with the wire shelves and be happy. But this is bigger than us. I’m thinking about what is best for our wedding cake. This is a big year for our wedding cake. It will be 25 in November. It has lasted longer than 80% of marriages in America today (not sure of that statistic, but it sounds about right).
It’s an old story, one you probably hear everyday. Our wedding cake spent its first year in my mother’s freezer. Since then it has been way in the back on the bottom shelf of my GE refrigerator (in the dark since the door-is-open-gizmo-breakage-incident). Over the years, whenever we’ve moved, it was the last thing out of the fridge and the first thing back in at the new home. It’s still in pretty good shape, although I don’t think I’d eat it.
Don’t you think that a cake like that deserves a GE Profile Energy Star 22.2 Cu.Ft. stainless bottom-freezer model PFS22SBSSS refrigerator, the one without the ice maker, as a resting place?
Wouldn’t this be a great advertisement for GE refrigerators? What a testimonial to the wonderful preservative powers of your refrigerators. Also a terrifying commentary on the preservatives in food, but that is beside the point.
Please consider my proposal. I would appreciate hearing from you.
You will be happy to know I did end up getting a stainless steel, French door, freezer-on-the-bottom refrigerator. I love it!
You may be surprised to learn, however, that my new refrigerator was not a gift from the chairman of GE.
Instead of the very large cardboard box I was expecting, GE sent a letter. It was a chilly (note the irony) little form letter from some public relations flunky stating they always appreciate hearing from customers, yada yada yada. There wasn’t even a coupon enclosed!
Although the new appliance was expensive, I am content. To all those unfortunate souls still yearning for a stainless steel refrigerator, I say – let them eat cake! I just so happen to have some in my fridge.
p.s. I am on vacation this week. Here is a post I originally wrote for another site, before I came to WordPress last fall. Hope it gets more readers than the 2 it got the first time around.
Well, you certainly have at least one additional reader. But, if it’s all the same to you, I think I’ll skip the cake. Have a wonderful vacation!
Thanks! I’ll be back home tomorrow. I’ve really missed my wedding cake.
Can’t hurt to ask, huh? Wouldn’t your jaw have hit the ground if they sent you one!
It would have been a great ad campaign. GE missed the boat. And my kids would have loved that big box. I remember fighting my sibs over that when I was a kid.
For a company that has figured out how to avoid paying any corporate income taxes, you’d think they’d want to spread some of that love around.
The rich get richer, the poor have to shell out big $$ for a fridge.,
I really want to see that cake!
It’s in my fridge – you could have seen it 2 weeks ago!
I’m shocked they didn’t send you a discount coupon! For goodness sake, when I complained about a particularly gross Lean Cuisine, they deluged me with coupons. Why wouldn’t you reward a happy customer too? Sheesh!
The decades old wedding cake, well, I don’t know what to say about that.
At this point, what am I going to do with it – toss it in the trash? I was going to have a big party/cake burying ceremony on our 25th anniversary, but I didn’t do it. Maybe for our 50th?
You mean they’re a bunch of stiffs at G.E.? G.e.e., who’d a thunk it?
I think the letter-reading-flunky just lacked a certain amount of vision. I’m sure if Mr. Immelt had actually received my letter, I would be the new spokesmodel for GE today!
Brilliant. I could see the ad campaign. GE missed an opportunity, there. Fools.
That’s what I thought! Can’t believe I still purchased their dumb, ole fridge.
Hey, if I were in charge I would have given you a new refrigerator. I have a spiffy stainless steel one that I got NEW on Craigs List very cheap. The guy selling it mistakenly ordered the door opening from the wrong side and because it’s a foreign model, it couldn’t be changed or returned. A great bargain for me. Try Craigs List. You might luck out!
I love that kind of story! Why can I not remember when Columbus sailed the ocean blue, but I know what I paid for everything I own? Especially if it was a deal,
If I were Jeff Immelt I would have given you a refrigerator. I’m actually a GE stockholder and as owner of .00000001% of the company I’ll see if I can pull some strings and get you a coupon.
Have a great vacation.
Thanks, Daddy Warbucks,but what I really need now is a new stove. Can you take care of that at the next meeting of the big, cigar-chomping, Monopoly-guys?
What a good idea! I once wrote to a firm when my tv died the day after the guarantee ran out ( 1 year and a day old ) … after a few letters back and forth they gave me a new one 🙂
Have a lovely holiday
Thank you! I wish my appliance pursuit had as happy an ending as yours. 😦
Why not ask GE for a new stove, too? Heck, this could turn into a mini-series.
I would if I thought I had a chance to getting one. Apparently they expect people to PAY for their appliances. Jeesh.
My daughter is a pro at writing letters to companies and getting things for free (she also wins every contest going!).
I have a stainless steel fridge (Whirlpool, not GE). I bought it from the former tenants of our house because they didn’t want to move it across the country. Magnets won’t stick to the front of it, and it shows every fingerprint my teenagers put on it! It is also a lot smaller than I thought it was when I bought it, although it is frost-free…
Congrats on keeping the wedding cake (and the marriage) that long!
My kitchen is tiny, so magnets not sticking helps cut down on clutter. Also, having half a door to open instead of a full one made it much easier to fit in.
I really need a new stove. Do you think your daughter is up to the task?