Friday, August 14, 2009

Clearing the Tumbleweeds

I want to start writing on a less regular basis, seeing as how my regular habit has been to not write at all. So I want to break that bad habit, especially with our little one coming in two weeks. I'm going to revitalize this blog; maybe give it a bloglift, a blogicure, some blogoplasty - an all-around major invasive blogery. I'll probably change the template and maybe add a few features to help modernize things a bit since the inception of Random Humor over 5 years ago. Hopefully you'll like the changes, and if I'm lucky I won't mess anything up too horribly, but something definitely needs to be done - besides blogging, of course.

Speaking of blogging...

I went to Wells Fargo to evict a couple of mischievous checks and some noisy cash that happened to be renting some space in my wallet. I just wanted to do a straight deposit, so I went to the drive-thru ATM. I rolled down my window, looking for the envelope box, but didn't see it. I pulled up to the ATM, and tried to open what looked to be a likely envelope-holding drawer, but to no avail. It didn't even open - it was one of those trick drawers that serves no purpose save for the ATM designers to snicker and point when someone tries in vain to open it.

So here I was with checks and cash to deposit, and there be not an envelope in sight. Wonderful. Then my eye fell upon a sign on the face of the ATM, stating that this was an envelope-free ATM. My first thought was, "Oh great, how am I supposed to make a deposit without an envelope?" Then a less retarded part of my brain woke up from its coma and shouted, "Hey stupid! That means there's some newfangled technology in that there ATM that makes envelopes obsolete. You probably just stick your checks into the machine and it takes care of the rest."

The obstinate part of me quickly retorted, "Bugger that, give me my old-fashioned envelope-operated ATM. I don't trust this lack of enveloping one bit."

And that was that. I drove through the drive-thru, made my way around to the front, parked my car, and walked up to the ATMs in the bank's front wall. As I approached an open one, I realized I forgot to bring a pen to write down my deposit amount ($2.53) on the envelope. I was about to stop my progress and go back to my car to get a pen when what do I see but more envelope-free ATMs! Seeing that there was no escape from my familiar ways, this time I gave one of them a closer look to see how it worked.

Apparently, all you have to do is stick your checks and/or cash into the ATM's mouth and it scans the checks and identifies the value of the bills in seconds. It even shows you the scanned electronic version of each check. And that's all it took to convert me. I went from stubborn curmudgeon to drooling technophile with one check.

It's a liberating feeling, really. Knowing that I no longer have to bring a pen with me to make a deposit at an ATM. Knowing that I don't even have to count up my bills and checks - I can just rely on a machine to do all the math for me, and I don't even need to think! Now if only I had a machine I could use to think of a good ending for this blog.

Oh well.


Erica said...

This blog reminds me of Dana Carvey's "grumpy old man."

"I'm old! And I'm not happy!!!"

;-) I just think it's funny that you didn't trust the new technology.

Scot said...

Well, there IS a downside to this wonderful new technology. If you have several checks to deposit, it takes much longer than it did with envelopes... because now you have to feed them in, 1 by 1, and wait each time for the machine to scan and prompt you with the results.

For us people always on a schedule, it is very annoying. :-/

Sean Reagan said...

Actually, at Wells Fargo, you can deposit up to 30 checks at a time I believe it was. I did two at once and it only took a few seconds to scan them both.

Fr. Michael Reagan said...

Yah, get used to it, old man. I've been depositing my checks that way for months! Sometimes the scanner gets the amount wrong however. I tried to deposit my usual monthly paycheck of $16,030 and the scanner read it as a measly $16.03! Canceling the deposit and trying again yielding a reading of $16,000,300.00, which of course I quickly authenticated. You have to keep an eye on this modern technology, for sure!

BTW, I will be receiving all mail at my new private South Pacific island I just bought. All incoming mail comes with my champagne and caviar shipments...