It's been a few since my last rant, so I figure it's appropriate that this one is a doozy. And it covers several aspects.
As I mentioned in one of the IRC channels earlier, today has been one big exercise in 'how pissed off can we get Nathi before she finally snaps and kills someone'. Now, common believe aside, I'm not usually the truly violent type. Today, I could have gladly tried for some live rp'ing to go all 'Dread Lady' on several people's asses with little regret (til later of course, then it'd be All Over TM
But I digress. I may seem to do that quite a bit in this one.
Ever have one of those days when you get up and you can just tell
you would have been better off staying in bed and sleeping til it were all over? Today was just such a day, as you may well have guessed. Some dark, unheeded corner of my brain was desperately trying to hit the 'abort' key, while the rest of my conscious mind was yelling 'full speed ahead, and don't spare the whip!'. It was going to be one of those busy days. I had hoped to prepare for that by going to bed at a decent hour the night before, but was unable to sleep. Proper thanks goes out here, given the insomnia problem faded, and I slept like a baby. Until I had to get up all too early, and so didn't want to even move. Yeah, it was one of those where you swear, even breathing seems to take more effort than it's worth.
Usual morning routine of 'hurry up and get ready', then pile da lil one in the car and drive il marito to work so I could have the car - something which will soon be changing once I get my minivan.
Yes. Minivan. You got a problem with that, bub?
All seems to be going well - a bad sign if ever I saw one. Any time things seem to be going well in spite of that nagging feeling, one ought to be on guard for the sudden switches. Or in this case, the slow creeping doom. It began with little things. Like how the preferred daycare I'd looked into wouldn't have any openings til May. And then, only 'maybe', if they opened up a new class. The little man, also being impressed with the place, was none too keen on leaving. After a bit of conversation and promises of other fun things to do at home, he agreed that we could compromise on this - very advanced reasoning for a three year old, you know. Of course, on reaching home, he decided to withdraw from the agreement by grabbing onto the headrest slides in front of him, holding on for dear life, and screaming 'NOOOOO!' at the top of his lungs when I tried to coax him out. Thinking perhaps he just needed a moment to think about it and adjust to the idea that home is where we would be staying for a bit, I explained the consequences, then gently shut the door and walked into the house only to grab the bags of empty cans that were sitting just inside the front door so I could bring them out for recycling. (Yeah, go us. *waves a lil flag*) You know the reasoning here, yes?
"He'll want to come out because he won't like the idea of being left."
Didn't work. Or rather, yes, he didn't like it. But he liked the idea of just getting out of the car less.
I tried it one more time, this time going into the kitchen to retrieve the trash - a matter of mere moments, I assure you - then headed back outside to the dumpster, which is at the other end of our apartment building. He still wouldn't budge.
Well, that was enough of that, so I gently extricated him from both his seat and the headrest - a delicate task as he is one strong little cuss, and I had no interest in harming him in any way (though by this time I was starting to lose patience) - and then carried him into the house. He straightened himself out like a board, and I ended up having to cradle him in both arms, sideways. Yep, sideways like hauling lumber. I laid him down on the couch, and he went into one of his OMG TANTRUMs. This kind doesn't just get mad, he spits. He clenches his teeth and forces saliva through them, resulting in bubbles and bubbles that he somehow thinks are going to help him get his way. I really should have taken a picture. Maybe next time - there is always
a next time.
I let him cry it off, which took him quite a while and somewhat ruined the plans for the playground. Not about to reward behaviour like that. Didn't matter what room I was in, he'd follow me in just
to make sure he knew just how vexed he was with me not wanting to stand all day watching him sit in the car. Luckily, it didn't take too long for him to get happy again. Thank $diety.
So, life moved on. Thinking, as I had been told, that I was going to have guests today, I got my things ready to drop off at an agency office downtown, and I waited. And waited. And waited some more. Generally, when someone says 'see you tomorrow', and they have had a fairly steady pattern of when that time 'tomorrow' is, one expects that in some sort of reasonable time frame, one will indeed see those they are expecting to see. No dice. No phone call, no nothing. Ah well - not so bad, right? Still have time to take care of things before we pick up il marito, and time after to drop those papers off, seeing as how for the first time this week, he was getting off on time.
Now, in order to fully understand this next bit, I have to make one thing perfectly clear.
I hate 'em.
Thrice-damned, difficult, 'we aren't here to help you, we're here to see how hard we can screw you before you break and scream' sons of bitches, I say. Only redeeming quality of them is that sometimes
when the stars are right, and the heavens are properly aligned, and after having signed over your firstborn in triplicate, they may deign to loan you some cash. If they feel like it at the time. Possibly.
Remember that minivan I mentioned earlier? (Quit it.) To get said vehicle, money is required. Now, previously, when I found a car that was less than half
of what this one is costing (read: only $1500 for the cheaper one), this bank wouldn't give me a loan for it. Not even a short one. Regardless of the fact that we could easily afford the payments. They said that due to policy (remember this word - they use it a lot), they couldn't loan on a car for that small an amount without having something else of value attached to it.
"You're close, but you just haven't earned it yet, baby."
If I couldn't afford the other in one lump sum, how, you may well ask, can I afford to do it with a more expensive car? Simple. Daddy helped me out (Shut it, you) with an interest-free loan, which I will be paying back in full asap. He sent me out a check to take care of this, for which I am eternally grateful. Mad props to Dad.
The next thing you have to understand is that $Cash$ is what was required for this transaction to work properly. No, not checks, cash. C.A.S.H. And no, I'm not talking 'Johnny'. Reasons for this are unclear, aside from the 'this is how the bank wants it'. Said bank is holding the title to the car - a crucial part of this transaction.
Said bank is also three - count 'em - three hours away from here.
Now that we have the facts clear ...
I drive up to the bank, merrily pop my id in with the check and deposit slip, thinking 'my how convenient drive-thrus are', when a tinny voice crackles over the poor abused speaker system.
"Ma'am? I'm afraid we can't give you back that much in cash. It's our policy."
I blink. I ask her to please repeat that. I get more of the same.
Why is this, you may ask? Well, the bank the check was from was not theirs. This is something banks just can't stand, you know - the fact that they have competitors all over the place. "One Bank to Rule them All" you see. Further proof that they are an Institution of Evil.
For another thing, the amount. Good God Almighty, $3500 is just an earthshattering number to be tossing about, I know. How anyone could expect to be able to cash a check in that amount at their own bank with some degree of success is beyond me. Perish the thought. How arrogant of me to assume.
Yet another thing was the fact it was a 'personal' check. Had this been payroll, perhaps things would have been different. Perhaps. The respect for Authority and a fellow Institution Who Has Us By the Balls is how this all scans.
"I'm sorry, ma'am, but there's nothing I can do. Perhaps if you deposit it here tonight? You could withdraw the cash in the morning. It's not our fault - it's Federal policy that it has to sit here overnight for reasons we cannot reveal to you."
Of course I could. If it weren't for the fact that the current owner, who needs the cash, is planning on making a three hour long drive on a Saturday - when banks close by Noon - and thus needs to be leaving from here no later than 8:30am ... and yep, you guessed it - the earliest banks open on a Saturday, and it's at least a 20 minute drive from our bank to the seller's house ... perhaps if this were not the situation, this would be a viable option.
At this point, it's about 3:30pm, and I'm late to pick up da hubby, and am increasingly Not Amused. "Would you like me to give you back the $600 and deposit the rest?" the teller asks cheerfully. No, I want my damn check back so I can see if there are other options we can work out. Intro drive down the freeway to the other side of town.
Thinking it best to check again with the owner of the vehicle, we stop over there first - it's easier to go there than all the way back to the bank to raise Cain, then drive back, especially considering the wonderful gas prices of late. Of course, said owner is not home. Granted, we're an hour earlier than we had expected, thus we figure 'she'll be here sometime soon, lets go check other options'.
Intro more driving, this time in a town we're not familiar with. Scanning the roadside for just the right sort of business ... and huzzah! We strike gold. Not one, but TWO quick cash places. We stop at the first.
"Of course we can cash that check! Just let me run this through the system to make sure it will clear."
At this piont, I'm wondering what the fuck
my bank's problem was, given that they have an office in the same town my father's bank is, and surely ought to bloody well be able to run a similar check to prove that his account could indeed, at that very moment, cover the funds. Then the other shoe drops.
"Now, to cash this, we'll need ten percent of the total amount. That would be ... $350.00."
My jaw nearly hit the floor.
"Are you kidding me?"
No, he assured me in a chipper, friendly voice, he was most certainly not kidding. Was there perhaps any way my bank ... ah, no. I see. Sob story delivered, and no, thanks to policy, it was a 'pay to play' situation. We moved on to the next location.
These ladies were truly wonderful, if a bit scatterbrained now and then. No, no I didn't have an account there. Yes, I do need help. Intro sob story. Much commisseration ensues. Options are put forward. The fact that our bank has a location in this town just a few blocks away comes up. We head down to the bank to talk to 'Steve', because he is 'really a nice guy' and could possibly help us.
Steve was about as useful as a condom that's been designed with holes in it 'for more comfort and better sensation'. Couldn't do a damn thing for us, regardless. Didn't matter that it was obvious that the situation was becoming increasingly desperate as the minutes ticked by, nor the fact that the check was indeed good ... "We're sorry."
Mmmhmm. So am I.
Back to the owner's house. Finally there. It's about 5pm now, and I'm starting to feel a bit panicked. After much explaination, and not for the life of me being able to understand why we couldn't have just traded checks earlier, thus being able to have avoided all of this unpleasantness to begin with, nor why we couldn't just write her a check which she could deposit which woudln't go through til the next day, earliest, which would be covered, and then write a personal check from her account to the other bank that was holding the title ... Uh uh. More calls are made. To mother in law. To the 3-hours-away banker.
End result? "We need to have either cash, or a cashier's cheque. Think you could manage to talk your bank into that?"
Oh sure. Like I haven't just been the rounds with them for the past couple hours and gotten basically told 'no' a dozen different ways. The difference is the new option of that cashier's cheque. Without much choice, and hoping that this will finally be a solution, we head back to the bank. And wait in the drive-thru, which is really more of a 'come and park and watch every other line move foreward while yours sits' situation. On reaching the window, sob story related again. Can you guess the response?
"No, I'm sorry, we just can't help you."
"Not even if w--"
"But the ch--"
"You know, it'd be a damn shame if something were to--"
"Could you perhaps tell me why in hell I'm banking here when all I ever get from you people is 'no'?"
"Alright then. I was told that if I make the deposit tonight, I can still get the cash in the morning. We didn't know there was a bank this close, so didn't think we could make the deadline. Perhaps if the seller meets us right here, and we're here right at 8:30am tomorrow ... can you guarantee
me I can get that money in the morning?"
"Let me check ... Oh, no."
"No?!? I was told at the other location I could? What the hell is this?"
"I'm sorry, ma'am, but since the deposit would be after 4pm, it wouldn't be available til Monday. Standard policy, you know."
"No, no I didn't know. HAD I known, or had you people bothered to tell me, I would have deposited it at 3:30 and not dicked around for going on three hours! I was told 'deposit tonight, get cash in morning' not 'this is a limited time offer'."
"I'm sorry ma'am, but that's all we can do. Would you like to make a deposit?"
Yeah. I made the thrice-damned deposit. And with the reciept in my hot little angry hand, I made my way BACK to the last quick check place to beg, on hands and knees if necessary.
It wasn't necessary. The ladies were still very nice. BUT in order to make this work, we needed a recent bank statement, and a paystub. Which of course, were at home and work respectively. All out of reach, as it was now nearly 5:45, and business closed at 6:00. We were told that if we could get at least a 30 day bank statement showing the auto-deposits, they might be able to help us.
We drove like hell back to the bank. And waited in line again. Cursing the whole time. Got the statement. 3 months worth, oddly enough. Drove like hell back to the quick check place, got there with about 60 seconds to spare before the deadline. Was assured that whatever info we were lacking could be gotten to them Monday - when of course, we would be paying off this little loan. Part way through the paperwork, you guessed it, disaster struck.
"Now, how much was this for, again?"
"Thirty-three hundred dollars."
We only loan up to $300!"
" . . . "
"Oh dear, I am so sorry ... do you want to--"
"No, no that's fine. No really, it's ok."
"I'm sorry, I misunderstood when you said--"
"Not your fault, appreciate all your help. You really have been very kind to go out of your way like this. No worries, we'll work something out."
"Um ... would you like me to shred those papers then ...?"
"Yes, please. Thanks again - going to go talk to the owner and see what if anything we can do."
"I'm sorry we couldn't help you. Have a good night!"
We drove back to the owner's house. More discussion ensues. It is decided that by hook or by crook we will attempt Operation Earlybird Money Retreival. And if that doesn't work? Got no choice but to wait til Monday, and whenever the next time she's able to take 6 hours+ out of her day to drive up north to get the goram title.
This had better be one helluva good car, I tell you what.
It's nearly 1:30am now. Been clenching my jaw so hard it aches. I've got to be at that bank, bright and chipper and acting like I had NO idea that after one of THEIR employees told me that I could deposit in good faith, then withdraw the next day, that there was a 4pm deadline. I will have tears prepared. The owner will be present to add extra sob-factor to the situation. It's gonna be an Oscar performance, I tell you what. Will update all this later with the results.
To you smartasses thinking I should have just deposited the check earlier? Would have, oddly enough - had not il marito's work kept him after banking hours every farking day this week, and father waited a bit to send the check out. Did I mention that since the check from my father was to me, I had to be the one to deposit/cash it? Remember that whole 'one car' deal? With the limited time we had to work with this, given the time constraints and when we got it, things just did not gel. Lotta 'woulda, coulda, shoulda' going on here, yes. But hey. Glass is neither half empty, nor half full. That which it contains is toxic sludge, thus making the choice moot, since I don't wanna drink it anyways.
You'll pardon if I'm feeling less than optimistic at this point.No bankers, tellers, or loan officers were threatened or harmed in any way so that we could bring you today's rant. Unfortunately.
Things went pretty much as expected. Even after speaking to a manager, it was a no go. Even if this could have been avoided had they said something the first time. You know. Before the 4pm cutoff that I wasn't aware of until too late. Come Monday we will be looking into new banking options. Had this been the only thing, perhaps not, but it hasn't been.
Not happy with your situation? Change it. That's my
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