i already had a general idea in mind what i did and did not want, and the plan was to mix and match components, rather than buy one straight out of the box.
we stood in the home theater section for 15-20 mins and no sales associate bothered to come buy and ask if we needed anything. meanwhile, there were some people playing with a bookshelf stereo system, and by playing with it, i really mean turning the volume up to eardrum melting dBs. no one came over to ask them if they needed any help with anything, either.
finally, my friend tracked down a sales associate, because we had a question about the specs on a specific model (unlike best buy, circuit city doesn't post model specs on the shelf tags). he took the shelf tag and moseyed over to the computer. 5 mins later, he came back and told us that they didn't have that particular model in stock? WTF? i didn't ask you if you had it, i asked you what the specs were on it. but thank you for telling me that neither your store nor any of the local stores have that model in stock right now. then he just disappeared into the mists of the break room again or something, because we didn't see him again for the rest of the time we were there.
when we got over to the speaker section, we discovered that the price tags didn't match the merchandise on the display floor at all. we had to sit there and read the stock numbers on the merchandise and try to suss those out from what was posted. finally, i find what i want... so i thought that i could just take a tag and take it up to the counter to have it scanned. WRONG. they don't do that. again, no sales associate dropped by to check on us, so we had to go hunt one down. when we found him and told him that we were ready to point out the models that i wanted, he waved another sales associate over and told her to go find an associate to "deal with us." then he continued to stand right there.
there are no words. i was completely speechless. we could have done that.
finally, checked out, bought my stuff, and i refuse to ever go to circuit city ever, ever again. i still can't believe i purchased $1000 worth of stuff from some lazy chumpstains.