I’m a fan of automation. Some people bitch and complain about our increasingly technical world, but I revel in it. With every leap in technology there seems to be fewer people for me to actually have to talk to. I don’t give a shit about talking to a “real” person because I’m deftly scared of talking to people. Talk to a computer? Okay. They won’t think my voice sounds funny or something. I can’t wait for the day that I can order a fucking Big Mac by pushing buttons on a kiosk. Thank you Redbox, Netflix, and Amazon for making it possible to not interact with other humans. It probably doesn’t come as any surprise that I love ATMs because they finally accept cash deposits!
For awhile they would only take deposits for checks. If some asshole wrote you a check you could stop at the ATM and toss it into your account without talking to anyone. This also helped you circumvent bank business hours which was handy. They never accepted cash though. If someone paid you cash in a drug deal, changing their oil, or whatever you’d have to spend it or manually haul it to the fucking bank, once again talking to people, fucking around with deposit slips and your exploded pen, and dealing with 9-5 hours on weekdays. Fuck that shit: Banks Suck. This is part of the reason I hate dealing with cash.
Another fun fact: I’m in charge of my parents’ cell phone account. We have a deal where I pay the bill monthly and they repay me for their share. It’s a good system. They can be late and I won’t blow their phone up or charge them late fees and interest. Anyways, they pay me in cash, so every month I have to haul the cash manually somewhere. Checks would be nice because you can deposit those on your phone! You can deposit checks while you take a shit if you want. But nope because they use cash. Cash has to be taken to the bank…until recently.
The ATMs finally accept cash deposits! You pull up and feed the ATM your cash like it’s a hungry beast and, bam, you have cash in your bank account. It’s rather easy and Chase ATMs are all over the place so I can conveniently toss money into my account on my way home whenever or wherever I want. And it always works flawlessly. I count the cash beforehand, deposit it, and the screen always counts the correct amount. This was the case until it wasn’t.
I went to the ATM yesterday in a shady part of town around 11 p.m. I had $264 to deposit from phone payments and drug deals (just kidding FBI!). I did the usual stuff: insert card, enter PIN, select “deposit,” and insert the cash. Then the machine just froze up. It had the little circly icon that means the thing was “processing something” and it just kept doing it. Then the screen went black and, holy fuck, a command prompt window came up followed by a Windows loading screen like you’d see on a PC or laptop. And my money was still in the machine…
This was the fear always in the back of my mind: I gave the ATM cash — cold, hard cash — and it just shits out mid-transaction. What the hell was I supposed to do now? Call the cops? Call the bank? Drive off and hope that maybe it accepted it? Eventually I thought that calling the bank would be the best course of action.
Then the automation that I loved backfired. You see Chase doesn’t like to pay people to talk to you, so it’s a pain in the ass to figure out how to talk to a person. Automation doesn’t give the option “if the ATM ate your cash deposit, press 5!” so how do I talk to a person about that? I was a little shaken up at the time making it even harder to think logically. Eventually I just smashed “0” on my phone and wouldn’t you know it, but that did the trick. I talked to a real person.
It being 11 p.m. Central Time, I was talking to someone (probably) halfway around the planet. That’s fine with me, but motherfucker, accents are a pain to deal with. I found myself saying “uh, yes?” after what I could guess was a question. One time the dude even said “I credited your account for the $254 that you deposited” and I corrected him that it was really $264. I check my account today and only $254 was credited. Mother fucker. He was nice enough though and seemed to have fixed my main problem at least for now.
That’s it. ATMs suck because of random glitchy shit like this. I still love the bastards though because it’s way more convenient than talking to a person between the hours of 9-5 ON WEEKDAYS. And will I quit doing cash ATM deposits? Hell no. They’ve worked 98% of the time and I’m not going to change my habits because of one incident. Because then the terrorists win.
That doesn’t mean they don’t suck though. Fuck ATMs. I mean I’ll still use them but thanks to a damn ATM my Friday turned into an anxiety-fest from hell. Thanks ATMs. You Suck.