Close, But No Cigarillo

, , , , , | | Right | July 17, 2019

(I am working in the drive-thru window at a cigarette store next to a good-sized casino. It is about an hour before shift change when a van drives up with about seven guys in it.)

Customer #1: “Hey, do you have money to break $100?”

Me: “Yeah, I’ve got a little bit. What can I get for you?”

Customer #1: “I’d like a [cigarillo].”

(I get the item and ring it up.)

Me: “Okay, that’s going to be [less than $1].”

(He pays and I give him his change when the next guy leans over, waving another $100.)

Customer #2: “Hey, I want one, too!”

(I pause and look into the van. I see them all digging through their wallets.)

Me: “Hey, guys, show of hands; how many of you are buying a single [cigarillo] before you go to the casino?”

(They indicate they all are.)

Me: “And are you all paying with a $100 each?”

(They again all indicate they are.)

Me: “Yeah, I don’t have enough for that. Unless your buddy here treats you all, you’ll need something smaller to pay with. The cage girls in the casino can break your bills easier than I can.”

(They grumbled but all ended up managing to pay with $1 bills.)

The Future Economy

, , , , , | | Friendly | July 16, 2019

(I often overhear a lot of funny things from kids while I’m at work, but this one takes the cake.)

Child #1: “I have more money than anyone else in the world!”

Child #2: “Yeah, he has twenty-three dollars!”

(I stifled my laughter and sadness as I realized that I had less money than that child. Kids are sometimes pretty great.)

Money Doesn’t Organ-ically Come From Nowhere

, , , , , , | | Learning | July 13, 2019

(I work in the finance office of a university. This story was told to me by my coworker. Note that this took place over the phone with a student in online classes.)

Student: “When am I getting my financial aid stipend? I need that money.”

Coworker: “It looks like your funding is scheduled for [date two weeks later]. Once that hits your account at the school, we will review any excess funding and send it out to you within fourteen days.”

Student: “Why’s it going to take so long? I need that money now; can’t you move it up?!”

Coworker: “Unfortunately, we have to adhere to federal guidelines on when financial aid funding can be distributed to your account and will not be able to move up that date.”

Student: “But I need that money. I have to pay my rent and I have medical bills.”

Coworker: “I’m sorry to hear that, but I…”


Coworker: *after a brief pause* “Well, I am very sorry to hear that and I hope that things get better soon. We won’t be able to move up your disbursement dates, but if you check back in with us after we’ve received the funding, we may be able to expedite your stipend.”

(The student seemed satisfied with that resolution and ended the call. When she shared this story with me later I couldn’t help but speculate, “Wouldn’t your organs just falling out of your body, I don’t know, kill you?”)

Rich People Be Ballin’

, , , , , , | | Right | July 12, 2019

I work in a public library. A man approaches the counter to check out some movies. At the time, anyone who owes $5 or more is blocked from checking out, and this fellow owes $6. I inform him of this and tell him if he can bring his bill down to $4.99, he can check out. I’ve found this an effective way to get people to pay most or all of their fine, even our most stubborn “I shouldn’t have late fees at all” patrons.

The man is perfectly pleasant and agrees to pay. He then proceeds to not only pull the waistband of his shorts away from his body, but the waistband of his boxer shorts underneath, as well. He then rifles around in his underwear a bit and proceeds to give me six damp dollar bills.

I can’t refuse the money, so I reluctantly take it and check his items out to him. As soon as he’s gone, I get a can of disinfectant spray, hit “NO SALE” on the cash register, and take out his boxer-short money to spray down, informing a confused coworker what just happened. I also use a LOT of hand sanitizer and make sure the dollar bills are kept separate from the others.

Honestly, I’ll take boob money over ball-sack money any day! Unless she’s lactating, of course.

When They Want A Refund They Spin The Same Old Yarn

, , , , | | Right | July 11, 2019

(I’m working on the register when an older gentleman approaches me with a bag in hand. He sets it on the counter and produces a skein of yarn, saying he originally purchased too many and needs to return it.)

Me: “Okay. Do you have your original receipt?”

Customer: “No, I don’t have that. I paid cash for it.”

Me: “We can still do the return, I just can’t guarantee you’ll get back the full amount since there’s no way to tell if you used a coupon or got it on sale. It would also be for store credit.”

Customer: “Or you can just keep it.”

Me: *confused* “Keep it? I don’t…”

Customer: “Just take it.”

Me: “I… I’ve never had someone ask to do this before. I think I still need to process it through the computer.”

(I call for my manager over the radio, since I would need her, anyway, to get a merchandise return card, which are kept in a locked drawer. By this point, the customer is halfway to the door and the yarn is still in front of me.)

Customer: “No, it’s all right. You just keep it. I don’t need it.”

(He exited the store, and about five seconds after he disappeared, my manager showed up. I explained what had just happened, and she was just as puzzled as I was.)

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