I think I might have been a bit hard on you. It is quite natural to assume at first that the store would give you good advice and that they would educate you on your purchases. I would say most LFS are better than what you experienced. Most LFS would warn an obvious newbie that african cichlids are not your run of the mill tropical fish. To not even tell you that it was an african cichlid that you bought is pretty bad.
A good LFS will try to size up a new customer and find out what tanks and experience they have before selling them anything.
Free the Carbon
55 gallon 2 wpg planted dosing excel with guppies, and shrimp
90 gallon mixed reef with clowns, gobies, and cardinals
150 gallon african cichlid tank with clown loaches