Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Life's Awkward Moments

Had a bit of an awkward moment this morning at a drive-up ATM right near my office. And, before you ask, it's the only drive-up ATM I've ever heard of/seen, also. It's one of those things that manages to be both brilliant and ridiculous at the same time.

When I'm in my car--which is quite low to the ground, mind you--watching me climb through my front window is, likely, hilarious, for others to behold. For me, though, it's just ridiculous.

In an SUV or just a car that's a bit higher off the ground, I'd imagine the whole drive-up money machine thing is convenient and nice. Brilliant, even.

But the whole point of the drive-up ATM, as opposed to the normal walk-up variety, is to add both convenience (It's cold out! I don't want to get out of my car!) and speed to the whole process of extracting your own money.

Well, this morning, at sometime between 7:50 and 8:00, I rolled up to the ATM and sat in park while the person in the car in front of me...did something. She was digging through stuff on her backseat, that I could tell.

But I figured she'd at least look up when she saw me behind her, and either hurry up a little bit, or maybe pull up and let me use the ATM while she was doing whatever it was that she was doing.

Still, I gave her the benefit of the doubt.

And then several minutes passed, and she was still rifling through her backseat.

Finally, her head popped out from the car, but instead of acknowledging that she was holding me up, she just shut the door and climbed into the driver's seat. And proceeded to sit there.

Now, she was likely writing out a check to deposit in the ATM, which is fine. But she didn't even look up to see that I was behind her, or to say she'll be a couple of minutes.

And, okay, if it were me in that position, I would have made sure to have everything filled out and ready BEFORE getting to the drive-up ATM, which is, as I said, a convenient and fast alternative.


Well, there she sat, in her front seat for several more minutes, without even a hint of recognition that she was being incredibly rude (in my opinion, anyway). I wasn't sure what to do, mostly because I don't like being rude myself, so I sat there.

And then another car pulled up behind me.

At that point, the woman in front was still in the front seat, door closed. It had gone on long enough that I wasn't sure if she was done with the ATM and maybe she just didn't realize anyone was behind her.

So I decided to tap the horn. Lightly.

At which point she got out of the car and went to the ATM, deposited her check, got a receipt, and she was done. But before she got back in the car, she looked at me and waved, in a way that made it unclear if she was saying "sorry for the hold-up," or, "you happy now, jerk?"

In that moment, I wanted to ask her just that--were you acknowledging that you just help two other people up for 10 minutes while you did who-knows-what that SHOULD have been done before pulling up to the ATM? Or did you think I was the jerk because I called you on your rudeness?

I didn't ask, and then she got in her car and she pulled away.

And then I felt like the jerk. And I don't like feeling like a jerk, because I try so hard to not be a jerk. And so, since I can vent on a public forum, I decided to vent. Still not sure if I was the jerk, but it made me feel better writing about it.

Which, come to think of it, might actually make me a jerk.

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