Record hunting in Partick

Did you know that vinyl at the Salvation Army on Dumbarton Road costs a mere 50p per record? I was just in there the other day, looking for that holy grail of retro furniture, the steel typists desk, when, on a whim, I decided to check out the records. Among the Val Doonican records and the ‘Hits of (insert year)’, I managed to find some real gems:

Lodger, David Bowie
Released in 1979, this is one of those borderline albums, made at the end of the far better first third of Bowie’s career. I wasn’t as familiar with this one as some of his others, but my rule of thumb with Bowie is, if it was released before 1980, it’s probably good. This one just makes it.

Muddy Waters Rocks, Muddy Waters
Not his foray into rock music (which was actually called Electric Mud), just a random compilation of good songs. I don’t really need to say anything else about this one – it’s Muddy Waters, and he rocks.

Purple Rain, Prince
I have this on CD already, but I find that I never listen to CDs anymore. And at 50p, can I really say I don’t need this enough to justify the price? Certainly not.

Night Flight to Venus, Boney M
Even if this album didn’t have Brown Girl in the Ring on it, I still would have had to buy it for the cover alone. This record is very European, and sounds a bit like Aqua, but in a '70s way.

Arrival, Abba
This is the album with Dancing Queen; Knowing Me, Knowing You; and Money, Money, Money. Again, I have some Abba on CD, but there really is something special about putting a record on, leaning back on the sofa, and reading a book. Maybe it’s the crackle of the needle, or the fact that you have to work a little bit harder for your listening pleasure (you know, getting up, turning the record over, cleaning the dust off the needle, etc).

These just scratch the surface. Had I been more adventurous, there was a whole crate full of hard rock/heavy metal, including Rainbow’s complete back catalogue. As a rule, the record selection at Sally Army does not justify daily visits, but it’s an excellent place to go if you have some time to kill and want to make £2.50 go really far. There are other excellent places in Glasgow for vinyl – the Oxfam record shop on Byres Road, Record Fayre off Argyle Street near the Tron Theatre to name but two. But any charity shop will provide a few entertaining moments of browsing.


Can someone help me please?

Never ever ever buy something from www.dabs.com – or from any company that uses Home Delivery Network as their courier of choice.

My laptop’s hard drive recently died after only 3 years (note to self – next time, don’t buy a Toshiba) and made the mistake of ordering a new one from Dabs. Apparently their courier, Home Delivery Network, tried to deliver it twice unsuccessfully, though they never left a card or any other evidence of having done so. On your first 3 purchases, Dabs do not allow you to use a different delivery address from your billing address for ‘security reasons’ so unless you plan to be home on a week day, all day between 7am and 6pm, expect a week or so of bureaucratic nonsense before you hold your purchase in your sweaty little hands.

After tracking the failed delivery attempts on the Home Delivery Network’s website, I decided to call them. There is no phone number listed on the site. It directs customers to go back to the original supplier of the item in question. So, I wrote to Dabs to reschedule, and arranged to work from home the day of delivery. Unfortunately, Dabs, who also discourage customers from actually phoning, have a rather leisurely approach to answering emails, and no one got back to me until the day after the package was meant to be delivered.

I searched online for the telephone number for Home Delivery Network, which I found on a thread called Hard to Find Telephone Numbers. Several bits of information were imparted to me during the ensuing telephone conversation:
  • My postcode doesn’t exist in their system
  • Despite there being no telephone number anywhere on their website, they do not wish to discourage customers from phoning them
  • They do not deliver to Universities (I work at a university, so they could not deliver to my work
  • They will only deliver to homes or organisations that have no yellow lines in front and have plenty of parking spaces (how does that become my problem?)
  • Once drivers leave the depot, they are completely unreachable (apparently mobile technology has not yet reached the logistics industry)
After I screamed, laughed and cried into the phone, we finally reached an agreement. They would deliver to my husband’s place of work. And they did, around 11:30 this morning. And at 2:30 this afternoon, they phoned to say that they couldn't get access to the flat, and I should contact them to reschedule delivery. But they didn't get me, because they called my home number, which I told them was not the best number to reach me during a work day. Either Home Delivery Networks are hilarious pranksters, or complete idiots. And I’m sure one of the people I spoke to at their central call centre was actually drunk.

And, to cap it all off, Dabs finally got in touch with me this afternoon, replying to the email I sent them 2 days ago. Well done!


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