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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Chaos & Old School Retail Transactions

I was almost out of minutes on my cell. I buy prepaid minutes, a thousand at a time for a C-note, ends up costing me about ten bucks a month on average. My phone is ready for the Antiques Road Show, I think it is compatible with Smoke Signals 2.0, but I can still call and text with it.

Meanwhile, my bank switched debit card vendors or something, and I had two new debit cards to replace my one old one, and since I didn't know why they sent me two, I hadn't activated either one. My old card had a 3/11 expiration date, so I thought someday I might inquire why they sent me two new ones.

My old one quit working the other day, they were forcing my hand. I went through the drive through last night to get some cash, and I inquired. A bank employee came out and met me in the parking lot, explained that since I had a VISA debit card and an ATM card before the switch, the new vendor had sent replacement debit VISAs for each. Which one did I want to activate, the one ending in these for numbers or that four numbers?

I couldn't fathom why I'd care which one, so I picked the first one. She said she'd activate it for me, no problem.

Then I got home and couldn't find either where I thought I'd left them. Then tonight, needing to go buy cell minutes, I upped my effort to find them, and thought maybe I'd put them in the car in case I got by the bank someday.

I found a card, but it was the one I hadn't picked. I tossed my car looking for it, muttering about how we had to stop 'living like this.' 'Like this' being in perpetual clutter. I'm better than I used to be, but somehow the number of things I actually need to cart around or keep always exceeds the number of places I have for things I need to cart around or keep. Then stuff I don't need at all sneaks in and takes up some of that already overextended space and voila, there's clutter.

So I went to the T-Mobile store and asked the kid working there, 'Can I write a check?'

It's been so long since I wrote a check in a store, it felt like something you're not supposed to do.

And I guess it is because after saying it'd be no problem it took the poor girl around twenty minutes to figure out how to verify the check, endorse it, and print the receipt, each step of which she had to ask for more experienced help with before the solution was found.

When I graduated high school, a restaurant that took credit cards, you knew you were in a restaurant, complete with waiters and probably a maitre d'. I know, this was back when we used pay phones instead of cell phones and the plains were black with buffalo. And I'm pretty sure there was no such thing as a debit card back then.

Then I came home and immediately found the missing debit card where Mo's foot had been. About eight inches from where I found the one I knew was no good. Gotta quit living like this.

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