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Don’t Be A Pawn In Her Game

, , , , , | Legal | October 12, 2021

My husband likes to go to pawn shops to buy tools and guns. I usually come along just to browse, and I usually don’t find anything of interest. I have recently gotten into sewing and I happen to spot a higher-end sewing machine in really good shape with all the accessories and manuals on one of our visits. I decide that it is worth the chance for $200, and the pawnshop offers a thirty-day warranty, so I buy it.

When I get home, I ask about it on one of my sewing groups on Facebook. It turns out that the machine retails for $500 new. Most people congratulate me on the purchase and tell me that I got a really good deal. However, one lady decides to accuse me of buying stolen merchandise simply because I bought it at a pawnshop.

Lady: “Why did you buy that machine?! If you got it from a pawnshop, it is probably stolen! Only horrible people shop at pawnshops! How would you feel if someone stole your stuff and sold it at a pawnshop?”

Me: “What are you talking about?”

Lady: “Pawnshops are notorious for selling stolen goods! The police will come and arrest you if you tell people how much you paid and that you bought it at a pawn shop!”

Me: “Pawnshops are one of the most regulated types of resale shops in the United States! It is actually a felony for a pawnbroker to buy an item that they even SUSPECT is stolen! When you sell an item, you have to present a government-issued photo ID with your address and personal details AND provide a thumbprint as identification! I even had to show my driver’s license when I bought it because they had to create a buyer profile for me!”

Lady: “But people sell stolen items at pawn shops all the time! I wouldn’t trust a pawnbroker!”

Me: “Do you buy stuff on Facebook Marketplace, yard sales, or flea markets?”

Lady: “Yes, all the time. What is your point?”

Me: “Did you know that there is literally ZERO legal recordkeeping of those transactions? You could have easily bought stolen items and didn’t realize it! Pawnshops keep detailed records of who they buy from AND who they sell to!”

Lady: “BUT. PEOPLE. SELL. STOLEN. GOODS. AT. PAWN. SHOPS! You will be arrested!”

Me: “Yeah, right! If it is stolen, as you allege, the responsibility is on the pawnshop, NOT me! I bought the machine under the impression that it wasn’t stolen! Plus, my husband has been dealing with that pawnshop for close to twenty-five years, so they probably did their due diligence on the original owner.”

Lady: “I am going to report you to the police! Your name is [My Name] and you live in [City], [State]?”

Me: “Yes!”

Lady: “Now you are going to jail for buying stolen property!”

The lady DID call the sheriff’s department where I live, but they literally laughed at her after she accused me of knowingly buying stolen property from a legitimate pawnshop! My husband was born and raised here, and being a small town, all the sheriff’s deputies know my husband. The deputy who talked to her is even the deputy who checks pawnshops for stolen items, and he said that they had no report of that machine being stolen, anyway.

I don’t know how she couldn’t understand that just buying an item from a pawnshop DOES NOT mean that the item has been stolen!

This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 102

, , , , | Right | July 18, 2021

The pawnshop where I work also functions as a “financial institution.” When a customer loans with us, there is a 20% interest rate with every loan. The loan period is ninety days, which is broken up into three monthly payments. For example: if you get a loan of $100, the interest is $20 every month. If you would like to pay out the loan, it’s going to be $120 you owe us. You don’t have to pay the loan out early, but the cheapest payout would be in the first month. We DO NOT have any control over totals, payments, payment dates, late fees, etc.

A customer comes in, ready to pay out his item. The customer hands over his ID to my coworker. 

Customer: “I’d like to get [item] out, please.”

Coworker: “Okay, great! That’s going to be $160, and do you have your original loan contract we had you sign?”


Coworker: “Yes, you do. The grace period is established automatically in our system and is basically giving you a couple of days so the item doesn’t fall out for sale.”

Customer: “Well, y’all didn’t tell me the price would go up! This is absolutely ridiculous! I want my s***! NOW! I have $25; give me my stuff!”

Coworker: “You are more than welcome to pay an extension payment; it’s only $20. Even if you did come in time before the payment went up, you wouldn’t have enough money to get it out.”

Customer: “This is bulls***! Listen here, you. I have $25 to give you… today!”

Coworker: “Sir, that’s not going to cover the payment. We loaned you $100. You didn’t make last month’s payment, so the price of it w—”

Customer: “Override it, then; I don’t care. I want my s*** now. All you guys are doing is trying to get more money out of me. I know the manager will do it for me. She knows me very well. I’m a good customer.”

Coworker: “Sir, I can’t do that. It’s the company and our system. Our system automatically calculates payments and dates. It’s 100% out of our control. The manager can’t even override it.”

Customer: “You’re playing bulls*** games with me!”

I can hear him starting to cause a scene, so I go get the assistant manager.

Assistant Manager: “Hey, bud, what’s going on over here?”

Customer: “Y’all are playing bulls*** a** games with me and all I want is my [item]!”

Assistant Manager: “Okay, well, it looks like it’s going to be $160 to retrieve your item.”

Now I can almost see smoke coming out of this guy’s ears.

Customer: “No! I already told her I have $25 to get my s***. That’s all I have. See, y’all be playing games with me!”

Assistant Manager: “Sir, I feel like you think we have control of this. We really don’t. This is all computer-based. We have absolutely no control. Now, if I could override the system, I would, but I can’t. The $25 you have could go to the extension payment to save your item from being put out for sale, but you need the $160 to actually pay the loan out. This isn’t anyone’s fault here.”

This guy was really trying to get his item back for only $25 when he was loaned $100. He claimed that he had spent thousands and thousands of dollars with us. We can see how much he’s spent and it’s not even $400 dollars. He ended up calling our store manager, our district manager, AND corporate. His stuff is still there so his call must not have worked.

This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 101
This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 100
This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 99
This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 98
This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 97

Unable To Conjure Up A Return

, , , | Right | June 18, 2021

I’m working the buy counter in the pawn shop when a guy comes in with a TV, putting it on the counter in front of me.

Me: “Hi, what are you looking at doing today?”

Customer: “I bought this TV from you the other day and I want to bring it back.”

Me: “Okay, what’s wrong with it?”

Customer: “It’s haunted!”

Me: “…”

Customer: “Every time I turn it on, there are ghosts on the screen!”

Me: “I can see why that’s upsetting. Let me grab the manager; I need his permission to do a refund.”

Customer: “Oh, no, I don’t want the money back. I just want to bring the TV back. It’s haunted!”

Me: “Okay… you can leave it here if you want. You sure you don’t want a refund?”

Customer: “No, I just don’t want the TV in my house anymore. The ghosts might get out.”

And true to his word, he just walked off, leaving me with the apparently haunted TV. I don’t get paid enough for ghosts, and I can’t put the TV on the floor if it hasn’t been returned or bought in through the till, so I put it in the back room for the manager to deal with, just in case.

The Coughed Their Brains Out

, , , , , , | Right | August 23, 2020

Pursuant to local law, we are currently requiring face coverings while customers are in the shop.

Associate: “Can you please put your mask back on?”

Customer: “Oh, okay, yeah. I just took it off because I needed to cough.”

This story is part of our Anti-Masker roundup.

Read the next Anti-Masker roundup story!

Read the Anti-Masker roundup!

Unable To Think Outside The Xbox, Part 3

, , , | Right | July 16, 2020

I work in a pawn shop. Obviously, this means our stock is almost entirely brought in by customers. And yet, I have this conversation more often than I want.

Customer: “Do you have any [Console]s?”

Me: “No, sorry. We do get them in pretty often, but we don’t have any right now.”

Customer: “Can you order me one?”

Unable To Think Outside The XBox, Part 2
Unable To Think Outside The XBox