This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 54

| Right | July 23, 2016

(I’m a cashier at a popular retailer on a busy Saturday. An early-twenties man waits in line with a birthday card that says “DAD” on the top, and no envelope.)

Customer: “Do you sell the outsides for these?”

Me: “Yes, envelopes should be directly behind the cards.”

Customer: “Oh. Well, I didn’t see them…”

Me: *taking pity on him, as the lines are long and he’s already waited once* “That’s okay. Why don’t you just get it now and go back to pick up an envelope after?”

Customer: “Okay.”

(He proceeds to act like he’d never seen a debit card terminal in his life. I coach him on how to slide his card, and then we get to the cash-back screen.)

Customer: “I thought it was $5?”

Me: “Yes? The total’s $4.34.”

Customer: “But the lowest option’s $10?”

Me: “Oh, um, that’s for cash-back. Do you want cash-back?”

Customer: “Yes. Which button should I push?”

Me: “That depends on how much cash you’d like back.”

Customer: “But which option should I choose? Does it make a difference?”

Me: “It controls how much cash you’ll get.”

Customer: “Will it be more than one transaction?”

(I’m very lost at this point. I decide to go back to the very, very beginning.)

Me: “Sir, cash-back means that you pay the store extra money on your card, and then we give you that extra money in cash. It’s like going to the bank.”

Customer: “Oh! Oh, I don’t want that.”

Me: “Okay, then just hit ‘no.’”

(After all that, he doesn’t remember his PIN and leaves without the card. And then, about half an hour later, he is back at my register.)

Customer: “Do you still have that card?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: “Okay, I’d like to pay with this.” *hands me his student ID*

Me: “What?”

Customer: “Run this. It has [University currency from University a few blocks away] on it.”

(This currency is something you, or your parents, can load onto your card to do things like pay for your on-campus laundry with a swipe of your ID.)

Me: “Sir, we don’t take [University] dollars here.”

Customer: “Why not?!”

Me: “We’re just a store. We’re not connected to your school. We take real dollars here.”

(He left, and he didn’t come back again.)

 

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