• Since this is the Christmas shopping season and all that, maybe you guys can help me with something: What the heck is the deal with salespeople pushing warranties?

    And I mean, warranties on everything.

    Computers and fancy phones, I can see. But kids' games? Even simple CD players?

    Most of these items already come with manufacturers' warranties and most of them for a year at a minimum. But no, you can't leave the store unless you leave with an ever-bigger warranty, often pushed by an even bigger pain in the neck of a salesperson.

    Someone told me that these sales people get a little extra if they successfully foist these warranties off on you.

    I don't know.

    This much I do know: It's the single most obnoxious thing I've encountered this shopping season.

    Do any of you know whether there's any value at all in my taking these extended warranties? I mean, I'm thinking they're all but saying: "The item's doomed to break, buddy. Get this and protect yourself."

    But my luck is the thing that goes wrong "isn't" covered.

    So, am I nuts? Be careful on that one. But I could use your help. Quick. There are two salesmen waiting outside — they followed me all the way back to the studio from a Circuit City this past weekend!

    And they say they're not leaving!

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