Bah, Humbug!

Bah, humbug!

Since when did I have the 'christmas spirit'?

So I bought gifts for a bunch of my coworkers. It was pretty helpful. I think the managers even liked their gifts. I know the owner appreciates his copy of the Sorpanos soundtrack (he's a HUGE Sopranos fan).

In any case, It has been thinking about all these gifts and finding the right ones for the right people that has kindof gotten me into the christmas mood this year. I really was not planning on being very christmas-y.

But yesterday while picking up the last gift for someone, I wound up in line at Best Buy, and was sent to a station where the transaction was almost complete (If you've used Montgomery's Best Buy you know how their system works. Good most of the time, but it can have little hiccups). I wound up behind such a hiccup. A girl a few years younger than me (for the guys: she was about a 6 or a 7 out of 10) who was buying her last couple of gifts for family and boyfriend, and whose check was declined. Her bank didn't provide the cashier with any information, they just declined it over the phone.

Now, it's entirely possible that the girl simply overspent. She didn't keep track of one of her purchases, and there she is, account empty. Too bad. It's also possible, however, that a family member or friend got to her account and screwed her over, or that her bank (in the horror that is the week before christmas in economic transaction terms) screwed up her account or someone elses.

I really don't know, and I'll never find out.

But she seemed nice enough, and quite shocked and appropriately mortified.

And hell, it's two days till christmas.

So I reached past her and laid my debit card on the counter.

"Run it on this card."

The cashier, not yet realizing that I've never seen this girl before, assumes that I know her and looks at her for confirmation and then back at me. The girl looks at me like I just disembarked from an alien hovercraft that punched a hole in the roof and landed in the Networking and Connectivity department.

She says, "But, how am I going to give back--"

"Merry Christmas."

The cashier, at this point, gets her train of thought up to speed and overtakes reality: "You don't know him?"

Confused and still embarrased about the money issue, the girl responds. "No, I've never seen him before."

I smile and look at the cashier. "Go ahead and run the card."

The cashier looks back at her and in her surprise, her heavier latino accent kicks in to match her distinctive features. "Girl, you better take it! Don't ask no more questions!" she says with a laugh.

The girl tries to protest again but she's too shocked to put up any real argument, and I finally get her to bustle off with her own breathy "Merry Christmas! Thank you!" so that I can finish my purchases and go to work.

Now, I don't know about you, but I like to think $43.94 was well worth the knowledge that maybe sometime in the next 48 hours, and hopefully on christmas morning, in at least two households, a christmas story will be told about a mysterious young benefactor who saved christmas for a young girl.

I guess that settles it, I'm a pathetic romantic after all.

Hopelessly hopeful.

Merry Christmas everybody.

Friday, December 24, 2004


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