It's a cash sale, sweetie

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Feb 6, 2010 11:53 pm

As required by law, I'm out earlier today doing my share to stimulate the local, national and global economies by recklessly purchasing various items offered up for my consideration. First stop, Sports Authority, where I refresh my supply of red and white Zara Spooks and various gold spoons which will next find themselves attached to the lips of a surprised redfish while he and I debate his future. Back to the front of the store I go, and wait patiently behind a couple of other patrons while Tiffany and Skip, the two sporty youths running the registers, debate the merits of their respective hair gels. I edge toward Tiff's line, as it appears to be moving a bit faster.



Reaching her station, I present my selections for her scannage, and she greets me not. Her conversation with Skip has now lodged upon her cell service vs. his, and emotions are running high. She completes the bar code boogie with my monofilament missiles, and without missing a beat recites my total due in between comparing her texting ability to the speed of light.



I offer up a piece of paper which the Fed has created to show that central bankers have a sense of irony and humor, and Tiff takes it, still not engaging me in any sort of eye contact. She punches in the amount denoted in the corners of the inflato-note, and then says, "Phone number."



Not, "What is your phone number, sir?", or "Can I have your phone number, because I find middle aged men who purchase fishing lures and don't shave on Saturday mornings incredibly alluring?", or "If it please thee my lord, pray may I knock down your digits?"



No, it was declarative and offered no room for interpretation. "Phone number."



You know those commercials a while back, I think it was Visa, where everyone is spinning wildly through some retail environment, swiping their cards and whirling away merrily, and then the festival comes to a crashing stop when some dolt attempts to pay with (gasp) cash? Well....



I look at her with the look that I usually reserve for a client when he starts wanting to talk with me about his latest home based, m.l.m. endeavor, and how he and I could really leverage my whole client base together and recruit our way to Nirvana, without the uncomfortable shotgun blast to the head at the end. As that look settles on her for several seconds of quietude, she finally glances up at me, for the first time, and says again in that way that only exasperated teenage girls can, "Phone number?" her voice going up at the end in that combination of question and boredom.



"It's a cash sale," I point out to her, allowing that perhaps her rote response to the retail rumble had credit card security factors ingrained in her highlighted head.



"I know that," she said, still holding the bill I had given her and shaking it slightly to show me that she really did know what cash was. "I need your phone number for our records."



This is where it really started to go bad, as I devolved into full Ben Stein mode and began to explain to her that our exchange began and ended with the offering of my cash for her store's merch. She stood dumbfounded and actually turned to Skip and said, "He won't give his phone number." Skip glanced up at me for a moment, then shrugged and said to Tiff, "Well, some people are just like that. Ring it up anyway."



RING IT UP ANYWAY??? Allow commerce to take place anyway? Allow the freewill exchange of goods and services to occur anyway? Is this where we're headed, boys?



She entered something on her keypad, gave me my change without another word, and glared at me as I thanked her politely and moved on. It happened again at Lowes about 15 minutes later, but Sharquanda running the register there laughed and said "You know that's right," when I pointed out that I was paying with cash, and it was no big deal.



Resist the Borg!! I think I'm going to start being That Guy who pays his car tags and prop taxes with bags of nickels.

Feb 7, 2010 9:44 am

Sharquanda!!! That's some funny s***!!!


Feb 8, 2010 10:59 am

Bio must have missed the part about spoons and monofilament to clarify that "spooks" didn't reference the color of one's skin, but rather a specific type of fishing lure.

 
Actually, Bio, it's 2010 - we say Negro.  At least they do in the Senate.
Feb 8, 2010 5:22 pm

It has nothing to do with cash vs. credit.  They just want to track customers.  I always tell them I'm homeless.

Feb 8, 2010 5:32 pm

I think its a tad unfair to inconvenience the poor teenage girl who is making minimum wage and could give two sh*ts about her part time job. If you don't want to give your actual number give a fake one. The company is just trying to track customers for marketing and what not. You probably built your current business by jumping out of the bushes at strangers and offering your investment services. Its a bit lame to take offense to the way another business wants to attract/keep their customers.

Feb 8, 2010 7:42 pm

I tell them 900 123 4567  1313 Mockingbird Lane in Bedrock

Feb 8, 2010 8:38 pm
Ron 14:

I think its a tad unfair to inconvenience the poor teenage girl who is making minimum wage and could give two sh*ts about her part time job. If you don't want to give your actual number give a fake one. The company is just trying to track customers for marketing and what not. You probably built your current business by jumping out of the bushes at strangers and offering your investment services. Its a bit lame to take offense to the way another business wants to attract/keep their customers.





And that could bring up a whole new thread, one on surly teens and how their ennui with their current employment situation is consistently a source of irritation to anyone else who ever flipped a burger, pumped a gallon of gas, loaded a flatbed or anything else done with a good attitude and an eye to the future on your way up the ladder. If it's "unfair to inconvenience" Tiffany by my choice to not deceive her with a fake phone number, but instead to explain to her why I'm not going to do that, then so be it. Perhaps it prompted a thought somewhere in there. Truth be told, she was not as much inconvenienced, as she was incredulous that anyone would not comply, as per her employer's instructions. [see also "Resist the Borg]



PS. I never worked for Jones, so I never jumped out of a bush at a stranger.

Feb 8, 2010 8:39 pm
2wheeledbeemer:
Ron 14:

I think its a tad unfair to inconvenience the poor teenage girl who is making minimum wage and could give two sh*ts about her part time job. If you don't want to give your actual number give a fake one. The company is just trying to track customers for marketing and what not. You probably built your current business by jumping out of the bushes at strangers and offering your investment services. Its a bit lame to take offense to the way another business wants to attract/keep their customers.





And that could bring up a whole new thread, one on surly teens and how their ennui with their current employment situation is consistently a source of irritation to anyone else who ever flipped a burger, pumped a gallon of gas, loaded a flatbed or anything else done with a good attitude and an eye to the future on your way up the ladder. If it's "unfair to inconvenience" Tiffany by my choice to not deceive her with a fake phone number, but instead to explain to her why I'm not going to do that, then so be it. Perhaps it prompted a thought somewhere in there. Truth be told, she was not as much inconvenienced, as she was incredulous that anyone would not comply, as per her employer's instructions. [see also "Resist the Borg]



PS. I never worked for Jones, so I never jumped out of a bush at a stranger.




Feb 8, 2010 8:47 pm
BioFreeze:

"Spook"? This is 2010! Now, we say "african-American." 




HAHAHAHAH!!!!!!


wow.  I felt dirty laughing at that but what a razor sharp wit

Feb 8, 2010 10:22 pm
2wheeledbeemer:
Ron 14:

I think its a tad unfair to inconvenience the poor teenage girl who is making minimum wage and could give two sh*ts about her part time job. If you don't want to give your actual number give a fake one. The company is just trying to track customers for marketing and what not. You probably built your current business by jumping out of the bushes at strangers and offering your investment services. Its a bit lame to take offense to the way another business wants to attract/keep their customers.



And that could bring up a whole new thread, one on surly teens and how their ennui with their current employment situation is consistently a source of irritation to anyone else who ever flipped a burger, pumped a gallon of gas, loaded a flatbed or anything else done with a good attitude and an eye to the future on your way up the ladder. If it's "unfair to inconvenience" Tiffany by my choice to not deceive her with a fake phone number, but instead to explain to her why I'm not going to do that, then so be it. Perhaps it prompted a thought somewhere in there. Truth be told, she was not as much inconvenienced, as she was incredulous that anyone would not comply, as per her employer's instructions. [see also "Resist the Borg]

PS. I never worked for Jones, so I never jumped out of a bush at a stranger.

 
Have you ever cold called someone ? Same thing. A high school job is working your way up the ladder. Give me a break.
Feb 9, 2010 10:08 pm

I live in the NYC area. But when I've traveled to Western Virginia or Iowa it always was shocking for me how the people in fast-food stores or chain stores seem to follow the corporate "script" to the letter. Sometimes I feel like I'm in one of those stupid training videos.



Where I live, the only protocol is: give me my food (or check out my purchase) as fast as you f***ing can or I will never come here again. Sure I might miss out on some of the pleasantries you get on Main Street - but I'd rather save that experience for vacation.



If a company had a policy of asking for phone numbers, they would go out of business in my town.

Feb 9, 2010 10:46 pm
2wheeledbeemer:

As required by law, I'm out earlier today doing my share to stimulate the local, national and global economies by recklessly purchasing various items offered up for my consideration. First stop, Sports Authority, where I refresh my supply of red and white Zara Spooks and various gold spoons which will next find themselves attached to the lips of a surprised redfish while he and I debate his future. Back to the front of the store I go, and wait patiently behind a couple of other patrons while Tiffany and Skip, the two sporty youths running the registers, debate the merits of their respective hair gels. I edge toward Tiff's line, as it appears to be moving a bit faster.

Reaching her station, I present my selections for her scannage, and she greets me not. Her conversation with Skip has now lodged upon her cell service vs. his, and emotions are running high. She completes the bar code boogie with my monofilament missiles, and without missing a beat recites my total due in between comparing her texting ability to the speed of light.

I offer up a piece of paper which the Fed has created to show that central bankers have a sense of irony and humor, and Tiff takes it, still not engaging me in any sort of eye contact. She punches in the amount denoted in the corners of the inflato-note, and then says, "Phone number."

Not, "What is your phone number, sir?", or "Can I have your phone number, because I find middle aged men who purchase fishing lures and don't shave on Saturday mornings incredibly alluring?", or "If it please thee my lord, pray may I knock down your digits?"

No, it was declarative and offered no room for interpretation. "Phone number."

You know those commercials a while back, I think it was Visa, where everyone is spinning wildly through some retail environment, swiping their cards and whirling away merrily, and then the festival comes to a crashing stop when some dolt attempts to pay with (gasp) cash? Well....

I look at her with the look that I usually reserve for a client when he starts wanting to talk with me about his latest home based, m.l.m. endeavor, and how he and I could really leverage my whole client base together and recruit our way to Nirvana, without the uncomfortable shotgun blast to the head at the end. As that look settles on her for several seconds of quietude, she finally glances up at me, for the first time, and says again in that way that only exasperated teenage girls can, "Phone number?" her voice going up at the end in that combination of question and boredom.

"It's a cash sale," I point out to her, allowing that perhaps her rote response to the retail rumble had credit card security factors ingrained in her highlighted head.

"I know that," she said, still holding the bill I had given her and shaking it slightly to show me that she really did know what cash was. "I need your phone number for our records."

This is where it really started to go bad, as I devolved into full Ben Stein mode and began to explain to her that our exchange began and ended with the offering of my cash for her store's merch. She stood dumbfounded and actually turned to Skip and said, "He won't give his phone number." Skip glanced up at me for a moment, then shrugged and said to Tiff, "Well, some people are just like that. Ring it up anyway."

RING IT UP ANYWAY??? Allow commerce to take place anyway? Allow the freewill exchange of goods and services to occur anyway? Is this where we're headed, boys?

She entered something on her keypad, gave me my change without another word, and glared at me as I thanked her politely and moved on. It happened again at Lowes about 15 minutes later, but Sharquanda running the register there laughed and said "You know that's right," when I pointed out that I was paying with cash, and it was no big deal.

Resist the Borg!! I think I'm going to start being That Guy who pays his car tags and prop taxes with bags of nickels.

 
Dude, are you, or are you not the spawn of  Hunter S Thompson?
 
Too funny. Do me a favor and write a book. Or at least a blog.