Today the date finally arrived, and after spending 20 quid on travel I set off for London with a few heavy books in my bag, just in case there was a chance of getting any extra signatures. I arrived at the shop at 11.50 only to find out ........... it's now tomorrow.
The member of staff behind the counter was perplexed as to how I had picked up on the date, although admitted that others had turned up today too. They may be disassociating themselves with it now, but the shop were definitely advertising this date (at one point at least). I was told this date by a member of staff on my last visit to the shop, and I even still have an e-mail from a member of staff stating the 24th.
They guy never really got the gravity of my predicament though, and just portrayed a 'no harm done, pop back tomorrow' type approach, as though everyone who walks through the door is only ever a stones throw away anyway. He didn't seem to grasp my situation as I desperately asked him if it would be possible to at least get a book signed for me tomorrow. He told me he couldn't do it - but to be honest, under the circumstances that would have been a consolation prize at best anyway, as I was really keen to meet Dan Clowes.
I rarely get to London these days, but always end up spending way too much money in Gosh! when I do. However I was so gutted today when I was told this, that I didn't have the heart to peruse, I simply walked out and set off for home - Just five minutes after finishing my 2 hour journey in, I set off on my 2 hour journey home... the bag feeling that much heavier on the return leg.
I appreciate that this was partly my fault, and why I didn't re-check the date beforehand I'll never know. I could just have easily have booked tomorrow off instead of today, but not now. I'm really annoyed to have taken all the time, trouble and expense to attend this event and still be missing out....
BREAKING NEWS UPDATE!!!! Tuesday 25th May 2010
I've been contacted by Gosh! today, and I've been really impressed at their swift reply, sincerity of apology and offer to help. I got a full and frank answer as to what happened.... They confirmed that yes, originally, the signing was given the Monday slot, but this was later changed to Tuesday to fit around other events the sponsors had planned. They informed me that although they made a financial contribution to the costs of the visit, in no way were they able to call the shots, so they just have to take what was given. I was told that despite what I was told on the day, they would be making sure that I get a consolation prize of a signed copy of Dan’s new book in post, and one or two other goodies as well.
Short of delivering Mr Clowes to the door of Piley Towers to shake me by the hand, I don't think Gosh! could have done any more to try and salvage something from this episode. I think it reflects well on them, and you know many others would not even bother to even reply. I really appreciated the offer, and it did manage to lift the gloom that's been hanging round for the last day!