I’m Done With PFCU

“It’s good to be back!”

That is what I would say if I were writing the post I originally planned for today. But if this situation I am writing about instead was the flame to get me going, well then, so be it. I might as well make something good out of it. Cue rant!

I am taking recommendations for a new bank, or credit union, or whatever. Because first thing tomorrow, I am canceling my account with the Philadelphia Federal Credit Union.

I walked over to my local branch this afternoon to deposit some cash into checking. They recently installed two new ATM machines that both accept deposits, rather than only one with the function previously. I enter my card into the machine, which it keeps instead of a quick swipe, go through all of the menu options, and get my cash ready to insert. It’s more than 50 bills, so I entered half of the stack at a time. It took a while, but save for two rejected bills, the machine counted my money and I was ready to confirm the deposit. I hit “Finish my deposit,” and it first gives me a screen saying it was processing. Then the screen switched to a cancellation screen.

This Screen

A green light flashes over the deposit slot, and my bills peek out of the dispenser. For a second.

As I grab the money, it starts leaving my hand and re-enters the machine. And the door to the deposit slot closes back up. The screen remains the same, and after waiting a few minutes, nothing changed.

I looked up PFCU’s number on my phone, and call, hoping to just ask a representative to step outside and help me. The branch closed at 2pm. It was 2:55pm. I waited in the automated menu for maybe an option for a 24 hour customer service line to be sent to. That wasn’t an option on the line.

As I attract attention in my frustration by other PFCU members waiting for the ATM, one woman asks about what was going on, and pulled out her card to find another customer service number. They do have a 24 hour line, so I thanked her and called them.

The only options given to me were for debit card activation, a lost or stolen card, or a lost or stolen device. Considering the ATM had my card and wouldn’t release it, I pressed “2” for a lost or stolen card.

I was transferred to a representative named Allie, and when I explained to her my situation, she said she couldn’t do anything, and offered to give me the number to the main customer service line.

“Do you have a pen and paper?”

“No, I am outside at an ATM and this was my sole purpose for leaving my house at the moment. I don’t have anything on me now except my phone considering this ATM machine took my card and $98. I would appreciate if you could transfer me to the proper authority to fix this problem.”

She transfers me.

To the same line I had previously called to the direct branch that informed me that customer service hours were over.

I call the 24 hour line again. After going back and forth with the next person in a similar way as Allie, he did actually make some kind of effort. But all he could do was cancel my card, should it ever be ejected from that piece of shit machine.

At this point, three incredibly sweet women from the growing line were tapping on windows and knocking on the doors to see if there were any representatives who had not yet left, because a few lights were still on inside.

Nobody came out, and the associate on the line said nothing could be done about the cash I tried to deposit. The only thing he could do was give me the same bullshit number to call in the morning, and enter “an extensive note” on my account for the next representative I speak with.  I asked him to include in that note that a representative should instead be contacting me for the major incovenience, and if I don’t receive that call, which I’m pretty sure I won’t, I will be back at that branch in person at open to close my account. But honestly, I’m closing my account anyway, because this hasn’t been the first time PFCU has given me issue, and I don’t appreciate anyone messing with my money. But this was certainly the most absurd and most time consuming and infuriating.

As I walk back home, defeated and angry, I hear, “Don’t you let this situation ruin your day!” One of the women who was trying to help called out from her car. There’s something about strangers caring, that will really overwhelm you when you’re having a bad day. So for everyone in line who tried to help or even just sympathized and said sorry this was happening, I appreciate you all. I’m going to take that vibe instead of my frustrated one and finish out my day, thanks. But before I do so,

Screw you, PFCU.

Now for the good vibes for the rest of the weekend.

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Crumbs

“No, mom! Don’t talk to her, ask that guy over there, the NICE one.”

I am her, and at that point in my day at work, I couldn’t give less of a crap about the woman saying it. I believe I caught a glimpse of what has to be the tenth circle of hell that Dante was too scarred to write about. That circle where you’re working in a busy coffeeshop where nothing works and it never stops being 1 o’clock in the afternoon. It has to be, because it surely made me find Jesus again.

The shop I work at is located right in Center City. We have many times when we’re slammed with customers and everything is hectic. It’s to be expected. I wouldn’t work in food service if I couldn’t handle chaos. And to be honest, I kind of crave a good amount of chaos in my life; I wasn’t hugged enough as a child, sue me. But I have never felt as overwhelmed at my cafe as I was this day.

The best part of weathering a shitstorm is that by the time you’ve absolutely had enough, things finally die down and you look at the time to see that there’s only 5 minutes left in your shift. Time moves in hyperdrive when you’re too frazzled to pay attention to it.

By the time I served what seemed like about 100 customers, I look at the clock to see that only a mere thirteen minutes had passed since the last time I had checked. This is defying all rules and principles of madness. How is this happening? What cruel joke is this? Every time I desperately look at the time, none has passed me by.

It’s the worst kind of misery. Every fiber of your being wants to ball up in a corner and sob, but you know that won’t stop the gremlin-esque, caffeine-lacking customers from still needing things and yelling at you. And then you’d have a puddle of tears to mop up, and you’re already tip-toeing around the lake of spilled Half and Half nobody has been able to clean that a customer dropped earlier. So you push through. You feed the gremlins. With all the rapidly depleting energy you already don’t have. And they are blatant in their utter lack of appreciation. Somebody ordered a slice of cake.

It was the last slice of cake on display. and I plate it for the customer and start taking away the cakestand to wash it.

“Hey. Hey! EXCUSE ME!

I turn around to see who’s screaming. It’s the same guy who I just served the slice of cake to.

“I want the crumbs.”

“I’m sorry?”

I want the crumbs.”

Really, sir? Sir, whom I understand can see. With two perfectly functioning eyes that must clearly see me and my coworker drowning in the sea of demands being thrown at us by other overbearing, entitled, rude and hungry patrons, such as yourself. And upon receiving what you asked for in a timely manner, despite the horde you had to fight through to get it, you decide, You know, these poor souls just don’t seem like they hate their lives quite enough. I need the scraps off of the cakestand that they don’t have the time to return to because there are meals going cold that need to be run to tables and lattes that need to be crafted and only two pairs of more than full hands to do it all. Yes, the crumbs. Nothing is of greater importance and I must have it now. Really, sir?

I walked away. Yeah. I am only human, and I have my limits. If I didn’t ask my coworker to handle it, the situation would have gone very differently, and I would no longer have a job. Heck, I would no longer have my freedom for a while.

And I look at the time again. 1:23pm. This isn’t right. Last time I checked the time it definitely said 1:37pm.

Son of a…

 

 

This happened about a year ago and I still remember it vividly. It was possibly the worst day of my entire working life, let alone that job.

No.. I didn’t. I may have wanted to briefly, but our street was closed for construction and there wasn’t any traffic to walk into.

I’m kidding.

But if you ever ask me how things are going and I tell you, “Life is asking me for crumbs,” you’ll understand where I’m at.