Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The Sloths Know Something We Don't

If the husband and I were animals, we’d be sloths. Not because we make Kristen Bell sob big weeping tears of joy every time she sees us, but because we are sofreakinglazyohmygosh.
Click image for source
Don’t get me wrong. The husband works really hard at work. And I work really hard at pretending to work really hard. It’s just that there are some things we don’t do. Things that we really, really need to do, but require, like, three steps and probably twenty whole minutes and who has time for that when there’s Redneck Island to be watched?

Case in point? Our checking account with The Bank That Must Not Be Named. For the last three years, we’ve had, like, four dollars in an account that we’ve been meaning to close for years but our penchant for avoiding Very Important Things kinda got in the way. Every time we’d get a statement or letter from The Bank That Must Not Be Named, no doubt telling us we’ve overdrawn our account and owe four kajillion dollars, we’d throw it under a couch cushion (it’s much easier to ignore your responsibilities when you sit on them) and return to watching hillbillies named Bucket guzzle backwash beer (true story).

The husband finally decided to open one of these letters and read something about OVERDRAFT and then we promptly started sobbing and held each other because, OMG that sounds scary, what does it mean?
Where is Zack Morris when you need him?

Two days later we decided to act like the adults we try so hard never to be and headed on over to The Bank That Must Not Be Named.

Me: We could owe money.

The husband: I know.

Me: Like a lot of money.

The husband: I know.

Me: What are we going to do?

The husband: We’ll just have to pay it. We’re going to have to face the consequences of avoiding our responsibilities.

He sounded all confident and adult-y but he had this scared, shaky-eyed look, like when you corner a rat in your house and it doesn’t know where to go, so it just pings off your walls until it knocks itself out. (Not that I’ve ever had a rat in my house. I did have rats in the office building I worked in for four years. Come to think of it, they never looked cornered and panicked when you happened upon them. They’d briefly pause their casual sauntering, look at you like what the hell are you doing here, and then saunter away.)

It’s amazing the tactics a bank will employ when they are about to lose a customer. We took a seat in the lobby and a lady came over to sign us in. She was all, how can I help you? You look beautiful today. Can I get you some coffee infused with diamonds and unicorn tears?

Us: We want to close our account.

Her: Oh. Well in that case, there is someone  ahead of you in line. He’s not here right now and we don’t know when he’ll be back, but I’m sure we’ll be able to help you soon.

I kid you not, she actually said that.

The man-who-does-not-actually-exist never returned  from wherever he never went (shocking, I know) and eventually we were helped. The woman immediately tried to lay on the guilt, to which I was all, are you kidding me lady? You want to use guilt to get me to do something? I’m Italian. We invented guilt. Trust me on this, you do NOT want to go toe to toe with the Guilt Master. I will chew you up and spit you out.

Which is exactly what I did ten minutes later when she just Would. Not. Shut. Up. I detailed every horrible, nightmare, pain in the ass thing that happened while banking with The Bank That Must Not Be Named, and concluded by comparing the whole experience  to a bad relationship. “Sometimes you just gotta call it quits.”

She turned a little pale and stopped talking, but just couldn’t help making one final remark. “Well, if things don’t work out with the other bank, consider giving us a try again.”

I just smiled sweetly in response, because I don't argue with idiots and also? Seriously? That’s like someone telling you to hit yourself in the head with a hammer again cuz maybe this time it won’t hurt even though each of the last fifteen blows to your bloody skull made you wish for death.

Thanks, but no.

I can’t tell you how liberating it was walking out of that bank knowing the account was closed and we would never have to hide statements under couch cushions again. It almost made us want to turn over a new leaf. To reject our slothy ways and face adult-hood head on.


You see, instead of owing money, the bank gave us money. Way more than the four dollars we thought we had. So as great as it felt to accomplish a long-overdue task, the lesson we really learned is this: shirking responsibilities pays. Literally.

Comment gem!
J Day: I'm sure there were parents who, on the way home, had to field questions such as, "Mommy, why was that one lady on to of the other lady? Were they playing a game?" 



    I'm convinced bankers who lose a customer get waterboarded at quarterly meetings. Hence the desperation to keep you on.

  2. So the moral of the story is, act like a kid for as long as possible. Then people will give you money.

  3. I think we owe some account in a far far away land. I might just threaten to take my business to another bank and see what happens.

  4. I still have an account with about 1.50 in it in my maiden name. I was going to close it, but my old aunt once told me to keep it in case I ever got really rich and need to hide money from the taxman.

  5. I have this habit of just throwing mail in recycling cans, since I pay my bills online. I randomly opened on two weeks ago, and it had a check for $400. I wonder how rich I would have been, if I had just opened all those effing envelopes.

  6. The same thing happened to me when I tried to close my old bank account! They acted like I was personally breaking up with them. My reason for leaving was so simple too--they don't have branches where I now live. The lady was like "well, when you move back, you can switch back to us." Um no.

  7. Americanism at work! Enjoy the spoils.


  8. 1) you made my entire week for posting a picture of the Jessie Spano freak out episode.

    B) I also have an account with about $4...I think it's like $3.58 and I open up the statement, avoid looking at the amount or anything it might say, and dutifully file it away never to be seen again. It's the right thing to do.

    iii) keep slothin in friend!

  9. I wish I could do such adult-y things... When I read, 'Things that we really, really need to do, but require, like, three steps and probably twenty whole minutes,' I thought 20 minutes? That's all? But of course my not-so-adulty mind was thinking about something else.

  10. I have not set foot in an actual bank for years. Really. I do all of my banking online, and if I actually need to go, I visit the teeny, tiny little branch of the credit union that has one girl in it with a computer, a phone a copier. There isn't even a chair to sit and wait in, because there isn't anything to sit and wait FOR. By the way, sloths are awesome.

  11. I don't remember the last time I set foot in a bank. I get all shifty and pale and sweaty. I know I don't belong there. THEY know I don't belong there and I feel like it's only a matter of moments before one of the tellers tries to pick me up, hang me upside down to shake out all the money in my pants, then point and laugh at the sad little miniscule amount of change that comes pathetically plopping out.

  12. "coffee infused with diamonds and unicorn tears" Where can I get some of that?

    Archie Bunker's Place was infested with rodents. http://agent54nsa.blogspot.com/2013/07/varmints-in-love.html

    It didn't end well.

    My bank offered me .0008 percent interest on my checking. It wasn't worth doing the paperwork. I said NO.


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