Silas ordered a Power Rangers helmet on Ebay a while ago.
It “only” cost $3. But after he’d clicked “Buy Now” we realized that it was $3 plus $39 shipping and handling.
So it’s a $42 power rangers helmet.
It was missing the head straps to hold it on his head. It didn’t matter. He had to have it.
When it came it wouldn’t stay on his head. It slid around and flopped all over the place. If he held still (something he doesn’t do very well) he could keep it on his head for a few minutes at a time.
But you can’t hold still and pretend to be a power ranger. Power rangers, by definition, do not hold still.
He tried using cardboard strips and scotch tape to make new straps. It didn’t work.
“What can I do?” he kept hounding me.
I suggested he email the people who make the helmet to see about getting replacement straps.
He finally agreed. We looked it up on Google.
Power ranger helmets are made by Bandai and distributed in the US by Bandai America.
There was an email for “Product Inquiries,” or some such, on their website. Silas wrote them an email.
I figured that would be the end of it.
The helmet got kicked under a pile of junk under his desk in the hallway and forgotten.
Then three weeks later, Bandai America sent an email back.
Yes, they have a limited number of replacement head straps for those helmets and they’re available on a first-come, first-served basis. They can’t fill requests for replacements by email, but if Silas will send a paper copy of his email to their address in California, they’ll send a set if they’re still available.
I printed the email, and left it to Silas to pencil in his address and a note that, yes, he’d like replacement straps.
A month later, on a day when Silas was moping around the house complaining of being “bored” I sat him down and made him write the note and address the envelope.
This week, the straps finally came, no charge. Silas was ecstatic.
I have to admit, I wasn’t very hopeful about the helmet ever being usable. Sending off the email was an act of desperation. In an age when everything that breaks is disposable, I never thought they’d actually have replacement parts, or that they’d be available for simply the cost of a postage stamp.
It took a while. But Bandai came through. Good for them.
As much as I’m not into their products, it’s good to know that they really do have an interest in doing right by their customers. It made my kid’s day. Which made my day.