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Bruin fans get home (furnishing) advantage

December 04, 2006|Daniel Yi | Times Staff Writer

A day after UCLA's stunning upset of USC, it was Jackie Stewart's turn to score.

He was among several dozen customers of a West Los Angeles furniture store who scored thousands of dollars in free merchandise after the store offered an unusual giveaway if the underdog Bruins beat the Trojans.

"Thanks for the furniture," UCLA graduate Stewart, 30, said as he readied to load his loot Sunday into a rented truck.

Last week, H.D. Buttercup on Venice Boulevard announced that anyone who spent $2,000 or more on merchandise between Thursday and Saturday's 1:30 p.m. kickoff could keep the furniture but get their money back if UCLA won.

Sunday the store began tallying up the damage, and it will be days before the total amount is known, said Mila Becker, the store's director of public relations.

Winners like Stewart wasted no time. Customers were lined up before the doors opened Sunday morning to sign up for the refunds and pick up their furniture. News vans filmed the action.

"Our VP of finance is a Trojan, and he was going on and on about how USC was going to win," Becker said. "Frankly, we got tired of hearing it and we told him to put the money where his mouth is."

Stewart said he was looking for furniture for his new Santa Monica apartment, which he shares with his girlfriend. He heard about the promotion from his father Saturday and decided to check it out before the start of the game.

It was almost game time Saturday and Stewart was having second thoughts about UCLA's chances when he saw what he wanted: an Italian leather sofa set.

"It was 1:23 when I made the purchase," he said. The price? Exactly $2,000.

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daniel.yi@latimes.com

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