Wednesday, September 3, 2008

.01

Yes Barbie, this blog is what you think it's about - so if you're reading this and you still have not slept - I will catch a flight there and KYO. GO TO SLEEP.

For the rest of you who do responsibly sleep.... I do not understand why employees or customers think that a store owes them a penny. Money is money and a debt is a debt. I do not go to the local grocery and demand the cashier cover my bill if I'm short - even by a penny. If I'm late on any of my bills - cable, power, water, phone, etc - even by a penny, they can, will, and do disconnect/discontinue/and disrupt service. Because, even by a penny - you are a negligent, past due on your bill. I do not call them up and say, "It's just a penny, you pay it!" or "Short the company!" I know that it's my bill, even that one, small penny.

Why then, do people when they come to a convenience store, expect me the cashier to either dig in my own pockets or short the drawer to cover their bill? Worse, why do employees think this is acceptable behavior?

Since becoming a full time employee, there has been a battle of wills on going between a co-worker and myself - one of the things we've been battling is shorting the drawer over pennies (sometimes as much as ten cents, sometimes as little as a penny). I will admit, there are a few customers, that on occasion I do not mind digging in my own pockets and putting in for their purchases - but that is my own choice and between me and them. Not something I am committed to do for each and every single customer regardless if I know them or not.

So today, when a customer was coming in to purchase 3 quarts (32 oz) beers and some crackers and was short - yes, by just a penny, and I nicely said, "Well, if you don't have it, you don't have it. You can put back one of the beers, or you can put back the crackers. Or you can go out to your car and see if you have a penny." Then the guy turns around to solicit from a customer, "No, you cannot solicit from our customers. I'm sorry."

The customer behind him, "It's just a penny! Come ON! Just short the drawer!"

Wow.

My co-worker behind me. "Geeezz! It's just a penny! Just give it to him!"

Me. "Do you want to put back one of the beers or the crackers? What would you like to do sir?"

The customer behind them huffs and says grouchily, "I'll go to my car and get a penny. Man, what a crock."

My co-worker behind me, "I cannot believe this, I'll go get a penny. Wow."

Me, "I'm sorry. It's not my money to give. You know, I didn't buy the merchandise in this store. I'm sure you're understand."

They said they did - even though they too just wanted me to let them slide on the penny.

The customer behind them came back and slammed his penny down (as did my co-worker a few minutes later), "Here!"

My co-worker slammed down the penny and a few extras in the Mentos area for anyone else who might be short. She then stormed into the manager's office, shreking for all to hear as she went, "Patttyyyyy you HAVE to talk to her about this pennnyyyy thiinnngggg!!!!!" And then SLAM goes the door.

Wow. I mean WOW. All this over a flippin' penny. So she's tellin' me that this guy really needed his three quarts of beer and crackers that badly? He just couldn't put one back and wait until he had the money? Did we, the store owe it to him?

When we go someplace, it is our responsibility as the consumers to make sure we have the means for what we plan on buying. That means EVERYTHING. If you plan on buying BEER - then you bring you ID, unless you've got gray hair and a cane. If you plan on buying tobacco, then you bring ID. If you plan on buying anything - you bring money (debit, credit, cash). And if you plan on paying with plastic (debit and/or credit) bring a readable ID - just in case you're asked for it. You cannot logically and sanely get p/o'd at the cashier for simply following the rules. They are not on an authority kick, they are not bitches, they are not being mean - they are simply - following the rules. They are consequences for NOT following the rules which can include fines, loss of job, being written up, etc.

The cashier does not owe you a penny - YOU are the consumer and as such, you have to have your act together before the cashier can act in the first place, not the other way around.


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