Commerce

I needed a fairly long ethernet cable to run to the TV room, and we failed at making our own so I decided to just buy one. Amazon has 50' cables for $6-10, but I wanted it today (new TiVo, for which "wireless" on the feature list apparently really meant "wireless-capable, if you get a peripheral", fooey).

I went to Best Buy, where their price was $36. We had roughly the following conversation:

Me: You price-match, right?
Rep 1: Yup.
Me: (shows Amazon listing for exact same cable)
Rep 1: This doesn't ship directly from Amazon; that doesn't count.

Me: I'm prepared to pay a little more to get it locally today, but I can't really bring myself to pay more than three times their price. Is there anything you can do for me?

Rep 1: Nope.
Rep 2: (walking by) Um, let me see what I can do. (I follow Rep 2 to a different desk.)

He gave it to me for $10.

It occurs to me to wonder now if I'm part of the problem for brick-and-mortar stores. On the other hand, if their price had been $15 (a 50% markup) I probably would have just paid it.