14 June 2010

I Remember My First Debit Card

While I was out on my epic Montana adventure, this happened back at Hooters:

If you are unsure what is going on here, let me enlighten you.  This is a "Merchant Copy" credit card slip.  You know, that thing you're meant to sign and leave for your server.  That thing that is really effing easy to figure out.  It has a couple of pretty clearly marked lines that you're meant to fill out.  It's simple.  Very, very simple.  For most.

Backstory.  Twin Tower was serving a table of six high school boys.  You know how I feel about high school diners at Hooters.  I'm sure they ordered water.  After asking how much it costs.  Anyway, at the end of the meal, Twin Tower split and delivered the tickets to the table.  One, Mr. Johnston, opted to pay by debit.

Twin Tower:  "Go ahead and sign that top copy and keep the bottom copy for yourself!"

This is pretty typical.  We've all heard it.  We know what to do.  Mr. Johnston it seems did not.  Let us ignore for a moment the fact that he left no tip.  Let's instead focus on the fact that he ignored the obvious "Signature" line and instead felt compelled to sign the very top of the credit receipt.  What the?!

Mr Johnston, let me give you the benefit of the doubt and assume this is your first debit card.  Let me further postulate that this is the first time you have used said first debit card.  I am giving you every possible out here and yet I can still not fathom what led you to sign your receipt in that way.  You make no sense.  You make negative sense.  Yes, I said negative sense.  

Fine, I'll assume Twin Tower's long legs and general hotness got in the way of you doing a simple everyday task.  That's the only explanation.


  1. Gotta love the mind-boggling effect that long legs have on mindless men. This makes me giggle.

  2. What would the world be without stuff like this to perplex us?!?!

  3. This is not even excusable by the "newcomer to paying for stuff with a card" line, its a parent's job to teach their kids how to go out and eat!! Come on people, its not rocket science!

  4. I guess some kids find it hard to get their parents to take them to Hooters lol..

  5. I am in complete agreeance with the thought that it is the parent's responsibility to teach children how to act in a restaurant. Too often I see tips not left, unintentional rudeness and awkward fumbling with the bill. It needs to stop! Get em while they're young!


  6. In the spirit of all fairness and stuff I should say.. Different places have different ways of calling and operating things.

    Here in Canada there are different mechanisms for credit and debit.. and different financial institutions that offer it.. credit is exclusively provided by the Visa's and Mastercard's of the world while debit is provided by the actual banks..

    what I am trying to get at is that normally when we swipe the debit card.. we dont need to sign anything (I would be a little confused myself if I had been asked to sign my debit bill as well).. just enter our pin number.. (tip is either included in the follow the instructions type process or agreed before entering the amount in the machine) .. while credit cards work pretty much the way that you described.

    I notice the bill says VISA and when you keept saying that he payed debit, it kinda baffled me until I realized that maybe your paying mechanics out in he good ol USA work a bit different that ours...

    This is by no means criticism.. more like extra tidbit of info.. If the kid is from around your area it mattters not at all that what he did makes sense for us crazy canucks. However if he is just passing by, visiting his grandparents or something from the white north, maybe we can give him the benefit of the doubt. (the complete lack of tip still is a mystery though).

    That being said .. I love this blog

    Alex in Mtl

  7. My Canadian friend, I appreciate your comment! Being that I spend a lot of time in Europe (and Canada) visiting family I am quite familiar with the different system that you speak of. It is true that a debit card there is run differently than a debit card in America.

    Here, a debit card is (at restaurants and places without a pin pad) treated like a credit card. While at a store you would likely enter your pin (but can also run like a credit and sign) at a restaurant you always sign. It's just what they do, don't ask me why.

    And yeah, I could assume they were from Canada or something, but judging by their age they probably wouldn't be traveling alone like that. And even if they were, I'm pretty sure that most Canadians would still read the slip and figure it out. It's not rocket science after all!

    Thanks for the differing view! Always good to get another prospective!

    Hope you keep enjoying and reading!


  8. I think I know this guy, he was on the freeway the other. You could easily tell it was him as he was driving for several miles with his right turn signal on, then changed lanes to the left cutting off another unsuspecting motorist. While I agree signing a reciept is simple, I still find turn signals even easier to fathom. It would seem evolution has not yet weeded him out of the remaining human gene pool.

    I always enjoy your posts,


  9. I always figure those blinker people have on really loud music and they're totally jamming out...this is the only way I don't totally loathe them.

  10. Oh wow, I've never seen that before and I've dealt with many a credit card receipt before. How odd!

  11. I haven't visited my local Hooter's in a long time. After reading this, I'll probably go this week.

  12. It looks like he signed his name for a class paper.

    I just found your blog yesterday and I love it!



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