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    No Debit, But Plenty of Loonies

    | Alberta, Canada |

    (At the gas station where I work, a young woman staggers in drunk and tries to buy a bag of chips on debit.)

    Me: “Okay, that will be $1.35 on debit.”

    (The customer picks up the pin pad and proceeds to swipe a quarter through the slot.)

    Me: “Um… ma’am?”

    Customer: “What?”

    Me: “That’s a quarter.”

    Customer: “Yes, I know. For some reason it won’t work. Is this thing turned on?”

    Me: “But… that’s… that’s not a debit card. Do you have a debit card?”

    Customer: “I’m TRYING! But it won’t work!”

    Me: “It’s plastic? Kinda rectangle shaped? Has your bank name on it?”

    Customer: “Why won’t it work?”

    Me: “You know what? I don’t think that one is working. Do you have another one? Sometimes these machines won’t like a card for no real reason. It happens.”

    Customer: “Oh ya? I get that at my work too…”

    (She proceeds to put away the quarter and pulls out a loonie instead.)

    Me: “Ma’am, I think I see the problem now. All of our card systems are down. They must have crashed with all the people buying things today. Do you have cash instead?”

    Customer: “Sure, no problem.” *pulls out 20 dollar bill* “Keep the change. It’s only a few dollars anyway. I don’t want it….”

    Me: “Sure, thanks!”

    (She wanders off to pass out in the bathroom for 3 hours but I just couldn’t bring myself to call the cops on her.)