PINned Them As A Scammer

, , , , | Legal | April 1, 2019

(I’m running one of the cashier lanes. It’s late and not particularly busy, so I’m spending my time organizing the shelves. A customer comes up to me, wearing a hoodie with a hat under it.)

Customer: “Hey, are you working?”

Me: “Yep! Right there.” *points to my register and starts walking to it*

Customer: *arriving at the register* “How long have you been working here?”

Me: “Oh, a couple of months.”

(It’s an honest answer, though I intentionally omit the fact that I cashiered at another store a year prior to this job. The customer hands me a couple of prepaid debit cards. To prevent fraud, only debit cards and cash are accepted as payment for them. There is also a $5,000 limit on how much you can purchase in total, with each individual card having a $500 limit.)

Me: “All right, how much on these?”

Customer: “Five hundred.”

Me: “Okay.” *puts the first card in for $500* “And how much for the other one?”

Customer: “Five hundred.”

(I put the other one through, but at this point, I’m concerned that the customer may be falling for a scam; the reason we have a $5,000 limit on these cards is that they are an easy way for scammers to receive money. I decide to probe him to make sure this isn’t occurring.)

Me: “$1,000? That’s quite a lot. What’s it for?”

Customer: “Girlfriend’s shopping spree.”

(I brush aside concerns that he could be the victim of a scam and proceed to tell him the total. However, the oddity of that response ignites a bit of suspicion.)

Customer: “This is a credit card.”

(I know what’s going on, because I’ve heard about this scam before. The scam is to tell the cashier that their credit card will work if you hit the “cash” button twice, which is what you do to tell the register that you are being paid in cash, for the exact amount — a shorthand for typing in exactly the amount owed and then pressing the “cash” button. Of course, this button has nothing whatsoever to do with credit cards; he is trying to scam the store out of $1,000 by tricking the register into thinking it is getting cash. The way I decide to deal with the situation is to play dumb and attempt to run his debit card through correctly.)

Me: “Can’t do that. It has to be debit or cash.”

(The customer “swipes” a debit card. However, he intentionally does it sloppily so that the magnetic stripe reader will not successfully read the card.)

Customer: “Did you put it as exact cash?”

(It surprises me that he decided to put it that way, but rather than confront him on the matter, I pretend I didn’t hear.)

Me: “It looks like it didn’t read your card. Can you try again?”

Customer: *doing the same thing as before* “I’m telling you: you have to do exact cash.”

Me: *again, pretending I didn’t hear* “Here, let me see that.”

(I motion for his card, and he hands it to me. I swipe it correctly on the PIN-pad for him and then hand it back.)

Me: “There you go!”

(Defeated, the customer continues with the card already swiped. It asks for his PIN. He types something in, and the system reports that, of course, the PIN was incorrect. No surprises there.)

Me: “Ah, it says the PIN is wrong.”

(Without a word, he “tries” again; I am later informed by the customer behind him that he is actually just typing “8888” into the keypad every time. He allows the PIN entry to fail, not once, not twice, not three times, but FOUR times. I am kind of shocked he would do this; some banks will actually lock out your debit card when this happens.)

Customer: “Why ain’t you running it as exact cash?”

Me: *feigning confusion* “Um, because it’s a card.”

Customer: “Well, it’s not working.”

Me: “Do you have another form of payment?”

(He thinks for a moment, and then eventually gives up and leaves.)

Me: “Have a nice day!”

(I’m proud to say this was my first and so far only encounter with a scammer while I was working as a cashier, and he got nothing. The next customer and I had a bit of a laugh about it.)

He’s About To Get Tow-tally Annihilated

, , , , | Legal | March 31, 2019

We had issues with customers parking in our gas station parking lot and then going up to the big casino whose property we were on. Both the casino and station were owned by the same tribe, but the rule was that if you went to the casino, you could not use the gas station parking lot, even though it was closer. They had a free shuttle to and from the lots at all times, so there was really no excuse.

As I was coming in from pulling trash by the pumps, I saw a giant truck in one of the two handicap parking spaces directly in front of the station. Because of so many people parking in these spots without permission, it was just second nature to check the vehicle for visible signs it was allowed. This truck had no handicap tags, placard, or stickers. I went into the miniature casino that was in the same building as the station, but there was only one customer there. When I asked, she said it wasn’t hers.

I called security and asked them to make an announcement for the owner of the truck to come move it. I gave the tag number and description, and asked them to let the customer know that if it wasn’t gone in fifteen minutes, it would be towed.

As another security officer came down for the hourly checkup, an enraged man came, as well, cursing and screaming about having to move his vehicle. I was outside again, and security stood there as a precaution. I told him that not only was he not supposed to use our parking lot if he was in the main casino, but he had no visible handicap tags.

He continued to scream and rant at me, and it was making me angrier and angrier. Security was trying to hide his smile and look professional.


“Sir,” I said, a little tersely. “There is a marking of a person in a wheelchair underneath your vehicle, right now.”


“Yes, sir, I violated the laws of physics, lifted your truck up, painted it under there, and then gently lowered it back down. Move your truck or I’m having it towed.”

He moved it one spot over. “There, you f****** b****. I’ve got another fifteen minutes.”

“Dude, if you walk off, I’m having it towed.”

He walked off, flipping me off, and I looked to the security officer.

“Let me call the tow truck. Please.”

“That was the funniest thing I’ve seen all day. Go for it.”

The tow truck got there in ten minutes, spent another five loading the vehicle up, and sat there another ten as the driver came in for something to drink before leaving.

Ten minutes after that, the customer stormed in, screaming, “WHERE IS MY TRUCK?!”

I took great pleasure in saying, “Probably the impound lot by now. I really hope you hit the jackpot.”

The Jury’s No Longer Out On Whether They Need An Update

, , , | Legal | March 30, 2019

(I’ve moved from one end of the country to another. Occasionally, my dad still gets a piece of mail with my name on it. Usually, it’s just junk mail, but if it looks official, he’ll open it for me to make sure it’s nothing super important. One day, it’s a jury summons, and we’re both stumped because I haven’t lived in the state, much less his house, in five years. I call his county clerk’s office.)

Me: “Hi. Um, I’m not entirely sure what to do in this situation. My dad got a jury summons for me the other day but–“

Clerk: “Then you need to report on the day indicated.”

Me: “Yes, but I can’t because-“

Clerk: “If you don’t show, you’ll have a bench warrant out for you.”

Me: “Yes, I know, but the thing is, I don’t live at that address anymore.”

Clerk: “Oh, then we need to update our records.”

Me: “I’ll say. I don’t even live in the same state as you and haven’t in several years. I’ve also gotten married, and the summons has my maiden name, not my legal name.”

Clerk: “Oh! Well, we get our records through the DMV.”

Me: “Right, well, I also haven’t had a license registered to that state in five years; I changed it when I moved, and then when I moved again, and then I updated it when I got married, so I’m not sure why your DMV gave you such outdated information. But anyway, I’m obviously not going to be able to go to this jury duty, so what should I do?”

Clerk: “Your dad is going to have to come in a sign a few things stating that you don’t live there anymore and it should be taken care of, but are you sure you can’t come in? I know jury duty can be a pain but–“

Me: “Er, I live thousands of miles away. That’s kind of why I’m calling.”

Clerk: *sigh* “If you say so. Just have your dad bring the summons in and fill out a form and we’ll take care of it.”

(I get a phone call a few days later.)

Caller: “Hello, is this Miss [Maiden Name]?

Me: “That was my maiden name, yes, but I’m Mrs. [Married Name] now.”

Caller: “Ah, yes, I see that. We’ve gotten your request about your jury duty summons, and I’m calling to let you know you don’t have to come to this jury panel.”

Me: “Okay, great!”

Caller: “The next group we have you in will meet in two weeks–“

Me: “Woah, woah, woah. Let me stop you right there. I need to not be in any groups in your county — actually, in your entire state. If you’ll look at the information I’m assuming you have in front of you, you’ll see my father filled out a form and gave you my new address.”

Caller: “Yes, I have that information right here.”

Me: “Perfect. Could you do me a favor and read back what state I live in now?”

Caller: “Zip code is… Oh. OH.”

Me: “Yeah, sorry to tell you, but your records really need an upgrade because I’ve moved states twice since I was a teenager, and I’ve gotten married. I’m legally not a resident of your state anymore. Please stop trying to summon me thousands of miles away for jury duty with really outdated records.”

Caller: “Er, yes. I will… take care of this. Have a good day!” *click*

(Turns out a few of my other hometown friends who’ve moved states have had this happen to them as well. One actually had to go to court because they had no idea they’d been summoned and had a bench warrant out for their arrest! Luckily, it was cleared up very quickly with just a few pieces of mail, their ID, and an understanding judge. I’m glad my father still lives at our old address, though; I can’t imagine the hassle I would have had to go through if my summons had just been thrown out.)

Driving Up The Illegality

, , , , , | Legal | March 29, 2019

This is a story often told by my father and his friend. When they were sixteen, my father’s friend had tuned and put all sorts of extra gear on his moped, most of it illegal. The moped was therefore able to drive way faster than was legal.

One day, my father’s friend was stopped, and the moped in question was taken by the police. Now, my father’s friend was the son of a posh English lady — note that this took place in a small, coastal village in Denmark, where foreigners were not common — and he went home and cried to his mother that the police had taken his moped without any cause. His mother always believed everything he said.

When the night fell, my father’s friend and another of my father’s friends jumped the fence to the police warehouse where the moped was stored. They quickly uninstalled all the illegal stuff, thus making the moped perfectly road-legal once again, and slipped out, unnoticed.

The next morning, my father’s friend and his mother marched down to the police station, where the mother started yelling at the police for taking her poor, innocent son’s moped and demanded that they give it back. When they informed her that it was illegal, she demanded to see it. Then my father’s friend, his mother, and two policemen all marched out to the moped, which was now legal. The police gave back the moped and apologised to the mother. She never did find out that he had broken into the police warehouse to fix it.

When The Racism Card Has Trample

, , , , | Legal | March 28, 2019

(At my store, there’s a cashier that everyone knows as lazy, prone to disappearing from the floor, taking breaks without warning, and breaking rules for both herself and customers. All the managers know she does these things, and she’s been written up multiple times. I’m talking with another coworker about her.)

Me: “Yeah, I’m surprised she’s not fired yet. We basically pay her to play around in the store.”

Coworker: “Oh, it’s because she threatened to sue for discrimination.”

Me: “What?”

Coworker: “Yeah, they told her if she kept it up they’d have to fire her, and she said she’d just claim racism.”

Me: “That’s… not how racism works. It’s not racist to fire a bad employee.”

Coworker: “Yeah, but a lawyer could figure out how to get the court to think it is.”

(It’s been six months and she still “works” at the store.)

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