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March 24th, 2005

Pounds & Dollars

Okay, two posts in one day you know I'm pissed off.

So tell me, why are people in Baton Rouge completely fucking STUPID???!

Let me tell you the saga of the international check. This is a great tale and one that the higher-ups of my particular banking institution will no doubt be thrilled to hear about in the scathing letter I will send about the ineptitude of their dim-witted employees. It's a long tale, but please do stay until the end and share in my frustration and displeasure - do not let me suffer this outrage alone, I beg of you!

I received an international check - i.e. it is written in pounds not dollars - some time ago. I went to one of my particular banking institution's (henceforth referred to as MPBI) branches to get said check cashed. Apparently international checks are an anomaly in this city causing banking employees to get rather confused. This particular jaunt to the bank took over 2.5 hours - most of that time spent while the person helping me tried to figure out what to do with an international check (I swear she whipped out a manual). She informed me that the check would have to be sent to their international-department to be transferred into dollars. Okay, no problem.

A few days later the nice lady called to tell me there was a problem with the check (wrong date). She would look into it and call me back but they were likely going to have to send the check back to the sender. I told her okay.

Two then three weeks went by and I'd heard nothing - I assumed she'd forgotten to call me and the check had been returned. Then I remembered Blank's Law and I called the bank. The nice lady told me, "Oh no, we didn't send it back. It's sitting here in my desk. I'm waiting for you to come and get it.

I took three deep breaths before answering, "I assumed you'd sent it back. No one ever called to tell me to come and get it."

"Oh. I didn't call you back?" she asked me.

I wanted to say, "No you dumb bitch. Don't you think if you had called and told me my approximately $500 check was collecting dust in your fucking desk I WOULD HAVE BEEN THERE TO GET IT BY NOW?!" Instead I said, "No, you didn't call me. I'm on my way to get it now."

I had to get permission to leave work and drive down and get my check. I contacted the sender and faxed him a copy so he could see the wrong date. He apologized profusely and immediately sent out another - which coming from England took some time to get here.

When it did, I took the check to another of MPBI's branches because this one was closer to my house. I walked up to the teller, even though I'd been told at the first branch the first time around a teller could not do this for me. But since they didn't really know what they were doing, I figured I'd give it a go. I told the woman-I-now-know-IS-AN-IDIOT behind the desk, "I have an international check that I need to deposit."

She looked at me as if I'd just announced I wanted to deposit a few $4 bills and $0.29 coins. It's an international check not a fucking unicorn. It does exist but apparently she didn't think so. "Let me see it," she says.

I hand it to her. "It's in pounds not dollars," I tell her (this is important later on).

She calls to a lady behind the counter, "Can we deposit international checks?" Remember, they're not used to those in this city. She is told yes and she goes ahead and makes the deposit, hands me a slip and says, "Thank you."

I give her a perplexed look, "That's it?" This took over two hours the last time at the other branch. She said it was and I went home.

Now here is where I screwed up - I trusted the teller and the bank to be smart enough to do their jobs. I didn't look at the slip she handed me - for if I had, I would have seen that the genius had deposited two-hundred-and-fifty-eight dollars into my account. The check is for two-hundred-and-fifty-eight pounds which is the equivalent of approximately $500. She's a teller at a fucking bank - a well-known banking institution, I might add - and she does not know that pounds and dollars are not the same thing.

Furthermore, I assumed they would know what to do with the check when they got it. That when they calculated everything up at the end of the evening they would look at this international check written out in pounds and send it to their international department. But no, of course they didn't. I know this now because this morning I checked my online banking account and saw the deposit of $256 (dumb bitch) and then a chargeback of the same amount and a chargeback fee of $4. The check didn't go through because they are bunch of incompetent fucking morons AND THEY'RE TRYING TO CHARGE ME!!!!!!!

I don't even fucking think so.

I have called the bank and someone is "looking into it" for me. He is very nice and seems just as baffled as I that the teller deposited the money as dollars.

He asked if I knew her name, I did not. I do know what date and time I went in, though, and that she was the only one at the counter. I hope she gets fired. And I'm not being cute, I really hope that. There are honest mistakes and then are instances where you are obviously not cut out for this line of work and if this isn't one I don't know what is. I even TOLD her it was in POUNDS NOT DOLLARS. She didn't know the difference.

I am so tired of dealing with this entire international check business that I could fucking scream. I cannot believe how unbearably impossible it has been to get this very simple thing done that people do all over the world every day except obviously never in Baton Rouge.

And now I have to contact the sender again and say (again) how sorry I am that this is taking so long and apologize for the fact that I live in a backwards city with a bunch of backwards-ass fucking morons who couldn't find their way out of a paper bag with both fucking ends cut out.

And let me tell you something else MPBI's main offices WILL hear about this. And as much as I will praise the nice gentleman who is looking into this (he just called again and got me to give him the teller's initials off of the deposit slip) I will condemn and bash the morons who have caused this migraine headache and this unbearably long post that I have forced my beloved readers to muck through. Someone has to pay for all of this suffering!!!

I will keep you posted as to who will burn....

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