Friday, March 13, 2009

How do rich people do it?

Those of you who've loaned me money or mugged me know that I don't carry much cash. I usually only take out about $20 at a time, with the reasoning that if I have more money in my wallet, I will spend it. Even though I know from experience that this has no impact on how much I spend (since I just end up using my free money card, which is cheaper), I still make a habit of it. Also, I often only have about $23 in my bank account. So $20 is the largest amount I can withdraw.

But a couple of days ago, I needed to take out $200, because I was having an improv practice, and paying back my boyfriend for part of a plane ticket. Also, I was getting a hair cut, and I hate putting the tip on my credit card, because then you just have that awkward moment where you’re like “Thank you, looks great,” and the stylist is like, “Thank you, I’m glad you like it,” and then she is still standing there, so you’re like, “I really really like it. It looks perfect,” and she’s like “You’re welcome, you’ve got beautiful hair,” and she kind of smiles at you, and you’re like, “You will be handsomely rewarded, I’m sure” and she’s like, “Oh, you don't have t--” and you say, “Well, got to go,” and then she sweeps off and probably Thinks Bad Thoughts about you.

So I go to the ATM in the CVS across the street, and I withdraw my $200 with kind of a thrill in my chest, because in my world that is A Lot of Money. The 20s come out of the machine pat-pat-pat-pat and I fold them up in my pocket and go back to work.

Later that day, I take them out of my pocket to put in my wallet. But first, I count them, and, horrified, discover there are 2 extra 20s!

Stealing! What bad karma!

Of course, I checked first to make sure I hadn’t accidentally withdrawn $240, but no, there it was on my bank statement: $200.

So I contemplate going back to the ATM, but it wasn’t in a bank, so I would just have to give the money back to a CVS employee, which doesn’t seem 100% right, either, because they’d probably just spend it on booze and pocket-sized Kleenex packets.

Then I thought I would give it to a homeless person. I’d wrap the money in a single, so as not to make a scene when I dropped it in their bucket.

I decided to go back to the ATM, get the phone number off of it, and then if they were like, “Keep it, lady,” I’d call my mom to ask her what the Talmud says about this sort of thing.

On my way back from the ATM, I suddenly realized that there are 5 $20 bills in a $100. Not 4, like with quarters in a dollar (a denomination I deal with much more frequently), but 5.

Which led to my one allotted use of the word “retarded” for today.


Artful Stew said...

A) You tip your stylist? I'm like - biz, I just paid you $80 to cut my hair, I'm keeping the change.
B) I have actually had the real version of that happen to me (I took out $40 and got $60) and yet I felt no moral obligation to return it. I thought it was just good karma giving me props for some good deed I did that day. Clearly, I am not as morally refined of a person as you are.

Julie Hilton Danan said...

This verifies my suspicion that we had lead in our pipes in Texas.