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Bend Broadband SUCKS!

I cannot begin to count the ways in which I think my local cable/internet/telephone provider sucks.

Their customer service people, particularly in the billing department, are rude and incompetent. They are in my honest opinion also as useless as tits on a boar.

Their prices are literally outrageous, but I guess when you have no competition other than satellite companies you don’t have to charge reasonable prices.

I received my latest bill in the mail today.

$67.74 total, $38.49  for 100 GB hi-speed internet, $18.95 for telephone (which I don’t use), $7.50 for modem purchase, and $2.80 for fees. I decided I was going to drop the telephone since I don’t use the landline and am already paying $40.00 a month for my cell phone.

The $18.95 per month for the telephone  is a bundled price (because I have my internet with them too). That price includes only local calls, if I was dumb enough to use them for my long distance calls I’d be getting socked for another 5 cents per minute.

I have 450 minutes every month on my cell phone (mostly those 450 minutes never get used) and that includes nationwide long distance so why would I use Bend Broadband for long distance and pay another 5 cents per minute??

I’ve already switched to Dish Network for television -7 months ago-and they charge literally less than half what Bend Broadband was charging me.

My Bend Broadband bill would be over $150.00 per month every month if I was intelligence-challenged enough to get my TV programming from them.

Just for shits and giggles, I decided to check my actual internet usage for the last 2 months, since I pay for 100 GB a month no matter what I actually use (unless of course I go over 100GB, in which case they charge me through the nose!)

Any unused GB does not roll over into the next month and they have no smaller packages available.

Last month I used 18.3 GB total.

The month before that I used 17.9 GB total.

As again any unused GB does not roll over into the next month, I am royally being screwed and it gets even better (for THEM, not me!!).

I do not download movies, songs, etc.  I use my computer for email, maintaining my two blogs, the rare visit to Facebook or its ilk, being an admin at 4 incentive-based sites, clicking, surfing, searching, and chatting with friends.

The $38.49 per month for 100 GB of  hi-speed internet access is a bundled price because I have my landline telephone service with Bend Broadband along with the high-speed internet access.

If I drop the telephone service my bill for the internet access goes up $10.00 per month.

So lets see I’m already being grossly overcharged for my actual internet usage, and if I drop the phone service the bill would change to $58.79 including the monthly payment for the modem purchase (I thought that stupid modem was already paid for too).

If the modem is paid for with the May 2, 2010 payment and I drop the telephone service the bill changes to $51.29

However, knowing this company they will manage to increase the bill somehow, they’ve already raised rates by 9% (whinging that the cost of TV programming has gone up markedly) at least once in 2010.

Last month the same services cost me $66.39 because they charged for partial months after raising their rates in the middle of a billing period, how bloody convenient for THEM.

The month before that the same services at a supposedly 9% LOWER price cost me $65.95……hmmmm whats their excuse for that other than gross overcharging?

Hmmm, doesn’t Dish Network get their programming from the same sources, how come they can charge $45.00 per month and Bend Broadband is ‘forced’ to charge $82.00 to $95.00 (they were dumb enough to include a 2010 price list in my bill)  for the same programming .

In my case the pricing would probably be even higher if I received it from Bend Broadband as all the channels I enjoy watching are all on digital cable, such as Discovery, A & E, TLC, The History Channel, DIY Network, Food Network, and HGTV.

I was paying Bend Broadband $127.74 each month until November of last year (2009)  for digital cable (including their converter box and remote), 100 GB hi-speed internet service, modem purchase (April through November), telephone, and taxes.

Only one television (out of 3 in the house at the time) was hooked up to cable and I had NO premium channels at all (in this case premium refers to channels such as HBO, Cinemax, and Showtime).

I now have 2 televisions hooked up to Dish Network and pay $43.99 per month for America’s Top 200 programming.  I could get America’s Top 250 programming for $53.99 and still be paying at least $30.00 less than Bend Broadband would charge.

The digital cable from Bend Broadband was $84.00-$86.00 a month so when that was dropped my bill should have been $41.00-$43.00, but it never has been anywhere near that low since September 2009 when I switched to Dish Network.

In fact, they charged me for a full month in October 2009 after I had already switched the TV to Dish Network and the customer service representative still had the stone balls to say ‘there will be a credit on your next bill’ when I complained.  So what, the idiots got to use MY money for a month while delivering no service at all.

Since they are really the only game in town when it comes to reliable internet access I will grudgingly stay with them.  Since they will screw me even worse money-wise if I unbundle the services and drop the telephone, I will also grudgingly keep the telephone service.

I have however made up my mind that the computer will be on 24/7 and I already added the 4 additional email addresses that I am allowed to have (for a total of 5).  I will be damned if I pay for 100 GB every single month and use less than 20 GB every single month.

I’m amused that two of my new email addresses are ‘using100GBifitkillsme’  @ bend broadband and ‘bendbroadbandsucks’  @ bend broadband.  I’m nothing if not creative when it comes to expressing my disgust with poor customer service and price gouging.

Personally I think this company has lost a lot of business to Dish Network and other satellite providers.  I think they are trying to make up for those losses by gouging the hell out of the people who are forced to remain with them for whatever reason.

Am I impressed with Bend Broadband?  I DON’T THINK SO!!

Unemployment Blues

I go to check my bank account (which mind you has been looking pretty sad for a long time anyway) and I notice that my next to last unemployment check (which should have been direct deposited last night) isn’t there.

My first thought is oh shit the cap on the Oregon Emergency Benefits extension was reached –the employment department worker that took my information for the extension had warned me that could happen–and I am now up that well known tributary without means of propulsion.

One would think though if that was the reason that I would have gotten some notice via email or snail mail, so I went to check my snail mail.  There was nothing but a bill from my miserable lousy rotten cable/internet/phone company (and there will be some blogging about THEM in a bit).

My next step:

I went to the Oregon Employment Department’s website to see if they’d had another budget driven day-long furlough–which would mean the employment offices throughout the state were closed for one day last week and when that happens usually the unemployment checks/direct deposits are delayed by one day.

Although there is one scheduled for tomorrow that won’t delay checks/direct deposits, there wasn’t one last week that would explain MY delay.

Then I checked the status of my check on the website and got this wonderful news.

“Your claim for the week ending April 10, 2010 has been received but not paid because of a problem. Information and instructions have been mailed to you.”

My assumption is that one of three things is wrong:

1) I filled out the online form to claim wrong (highly unlikely as they give you a second screen to verify your answers on, and I did verify before claiming),

2) they are going to try to say that I worked and didn’t report earnings (maybe in some alternative universe I worked, but in THIS universe I neither worked nor failed to report earnings from any work),

3) they are going to try to say that I didn’t look for work during the week I claimed benefits.

Hmmm, I would say that applying for 8 jobs in one week (when their requirement is 3 per week) and having an interview that same week certainly is looking for work.

I have each of these jobs detailed on an excel spreadsheet

By detailed I mean I listed the job title, company name, date applied, contact method used, contact person (if applicable),whether a cover letter was submitted or not, whether a resume was submitted or not, whether an application was submitted or not, and result of said application/email/resume/cover letter/etc.

In addition I kept copies of the emails I sent if the contact was strictly email.

I kept the confirmations I received in reply to online applications.

I kept any replies I received from hiring managers or hr departments.

So I can definitely prove that I looked for work if that is the issue.

However, their offices will be closed tomorrow (Friday), it will be at least Monday before I can do anything about this situation, and that’s assuming I get the snail mail from them tomorrow (Friday) or the day after tomorrow (Saturday).

Its just that this is one more stress that I totally do not need right now, with $134.00 in my checking account (and that’s all the money I have in this world) and no job.

This situation is pushing my panic button big-time, and pushing that panic button really takes a lot these days.

Safeway and The Single Girl

Now, before you get the idea that I bash Safeway a lot on this blog…….I do 90% of my grocery shopping at Safeway, so of course blog-worthy incidents in the preparation or eating of food that was purchased there are going to be posted here.

My latest experience with them was buying their new store brand microwavable 40 count three cheese mini pizza bagels.  At $7.99 I figured they would give me 4 meals. They did give me 4 meals, but I doubt I will ever buy them again

I will start with my first disappointment with this product, and that is that the three cheese mini pizza bagels come in non-resealable bags, 20 mini pizza bagels to a bag.

Now even this fat lady isn’t going to eat 20 mini pizza bagels at a sitting, so I had to repackage 10 of these bagels in a Hefty one-zip freezer bag.

As this is supposed to be a ‘convenience’ food my feeling is that it is inconvenient for me to have to either eat 20 at a sitting or repackage 10 of them. And when it comes down to the last 10, I have to keep the cooking instructions too.

My second disappointment with this product is that it is impossible to get the mini pizza bagels cooked sufficiently in my microwave so that the cheeses (mozzarella, cheddar, and monterey jack) actually melt without causing the bagels to toughen up.

You are supposed to microwave the product for 3 3/4 minutes at 50% power if you are preparing 9 bagels.

Well I have had to microwave all 3 batches of 9-11 bagels  for 4 1/2 minutes at 50% power to even get them warm, and then half of them have to be microwaved on high power for an additional 30 seconds to even melt the cheese.

The 4th batch, I said the hell with the cooking instructions and went for 3 3/4 minutes at full power.  They were warm and cheese was melted, they still tasted like cardboard with glop on top though!

I do not have problems with my microwave with any product other than these mini pizza bagels, or as I like to refer to them–cardboard with glop on top!

My third disappointment with this product is that the mini pizza bagels are just plain tasteless.  You would think that something with 3 kinds of cheese and tomato paste would have some taste to it, but I think chewing on truck tires would have more taste than this product, and no I am not joking.  The tough bagels just add to the wonderful eating experience. NOT!

All in all, this product is  inconvenient for small households and in my honest opinion tastes like cardboard.  It’s also not particularly cheap when you consider that the $7.99 was a sale price.

I’ll take Bagel Bites any day over this mockery of a mini-pizza.  Bagel Bites come 9 to a package (yes larger packages are available), the Bagel Bites package provides cooking instructions that melt the cheese without toughening the bagels beyond redemption, and Bagel Bites taste like real pizza not cardboard with half-melted glop on top

Will I buy the Safeway brand of mini pizza bagels again in any size package? I DON’T THINK SO!!

Selling Myself, or Adventures in Job Hunting

The job I was applying for was a part time seasonal custodian at a local museum.

In light of the fact that my custodial experience is 20 years ago, I decided when preparing the cover letter that it was probably better to go with the line in the classified ad about “an enthusiasm and love for the High Desert region” rather than discuss my experience in banking, clerical positions and data entry.

While I have a lot of that type of experience (over 10 years, to be picky about it) it doesn’t translate well to a custodial position.

I acknowledged that my custodial experience was in the early to mid 1980’s and that it was not on my resume (which I attached as a word document)

Then to play up my local connections I said that I was born in the old St Charles Hospital (which is now a Phoenix Suites), that my mother was born in a small maternity hospital over on the west side of town, that my maternal grandfather worked at the Shevlin-Hickson mill back in the day, that my stepmother owned the Pine Tavern (a well-known and well-loved restaurant that is still open to this day in downtown Bend), and that my father was one of the last owners of the Masterson-St Clair Hardware store here in Bend.

I also included that I attended Bend area schools up through the 9th grade

This to me was showing my potential employer that my roots in Central Oregon run deep.

Also, given the fact that this is a museum, there is a lot of historical significance to ALL of the  places I mentioned (especially in light of the fact that only one of the five places still exist).

I ran that by a online friend of mine and you would have thought I’d said that I eat small children for breakfast. “Just an observation, but don’t you think it is distracting to put all the personal information in rather than focusing on what you have to offer?’

Hmmm, what  I have to offer is 20-year old custodial experience.

How does my 16 years in the Portland area (again with the banking, clerical, data entry, postal service, etc experience) show what I have to offer as a custodian?

I felt that by focusing on irrelevant experience in a totally different physical location I would have been sending at least two messages to my potential employer, neither of which would assist me in getting the job I was  applying  for.

Message #1: Even though the ad says “enthusiasm and love for the High Desert area” I have chosen to tell you about my irrelevant experience in banking in the Portland area.

Portland, Oregon and Bend, Oregon are 180-200 miles away from each other one way and separated by a mountain range to boot.  There are so many differences between these geographical areas that I feel this would say to the person reading the email that the person sending the email (ME) didn’t even read the ad before sending off a resume and cover letter …..  that is not exactly the message you would want to send to a potential employer.

Message #2: This is a custodial position (ie cleaning, mopping, sweeping, dusting, etc).

Why should I emphasize my lack of recent custodial experience by detailing my banking/clerical/data entry experience unless of course I want to say to this potential employer “I am massively overqualified for this position and probably will be out the door as soon as I can find something in my field.”  Again, this is not exactly the message you would want to send to a potential employer.

I am happy that I’d sent off the cover letter and resume before running the cover letter by my friend–and yes I had told him the job was a custodial job for a local museum– because I think he probably would have convinced me to drop all the (relevant) historical and personal details in favor of including irrelevant details about non-transferable skills and experience.

Dead People Don’t Read Newspapers!!

I was somewhat irritated when my local newspaper (The Bulletin) sent a packet of coupons to my house to show my dead father what he was missing by not subscribing to the daily newspaper.

They also said he’d been given a 2 week free trial period too. I didn’t think that much of it though because it was addressed to ‘Jim Roley’ or current resident.  Since I am the current resident I just thought oh cool 2 weeks of free newspapers.

Not one paper has ever shown up at my house in the ONE week since I received the packet of coupons and the offer of the TWO week free trial of home delivery of the daily newspaper.

Today I received a bill (addressed solely to Jim Roley) from the idiots at The Bulletin  for newspapers that were never delivered.

I guess the imaginary 2 week free trial lasted ONE whole week since the postmark on the first letter from them is April 1, 2010.

I guess the imaginary 2 week FREE trial period offered to a dead person costs real money to someone who doesn’t even want a daily newspaper.

I guess they think a dead person reads newspapers.

I guess they think a dead person can pay a bill too, because this live person sure as hell is not going to pay for newspapers she never received.

They can go whistle for their money. I wrote DECEASED ON DECEMBER 12, 2007 across the envelope without even opening it, and tossed it into the outgoing mail.

What really makes me angry is that they were told 2 1/2 years ago when my father died that he had passed away.

At that time, I switched the delivery from both daily and Sunday newspapers to Sunday only, and put the bill in my name.  I have been paying that bill –which again is solely in MY name–for the Sunday paper for 2 1/2 years now.

It’s one thing when I receive mail from magazine publishers such as This Old House and Oregon Public Broadcasting in my fathers name. They were never notified of his death and they aren’t billing him for something, just trying to get him to resubscribe to their publications.

It’s totally another thing when The Bulletin sends a bill to a dead person for papers that nobody ever received.

It’s totally another thing when a two week trial period offered to a dead person ends in one week.

I find it rude, crude, and unattractive not to mention stupid and tacky.

Am I impressed with The Bulletin? I DON’T THINK SO!!

Shampoo, or Adventures in (Scalp) Itching

All brand names used in this blog post are the property of their respective owners.

I had no clue that Pantene and Garnier Fructis used wax in their shampoo formulations. This wax has been known to interact badly with permanent wave solutions to the point of the wax peeling off taking pieces of scalp with it.

I also was unaware that Herbal Essences conditioner has a wax formulation that again builds up on the scalp.

I also had no clue that using Pantene at least was damaging to my hair as well as to my scalp. Do a search for Pantene hair damage via Google or Bing and you will see what I mean.

I started noticing about a year ago after washing my hair with Pantene Pro-V (shampoo and conditioner) that my head/scalp would itch like crazy for an hour or so after shampooing.

This itching was so severe that I actually avoided washing my hair so that I wouldn’t spend an hour clawing at my head afterwards.

I asked one of the employees at Perfect Look what was happening.  She said that the wax that Pantene products use builds up on your scalp, your scalp can’t breathe, and then it starts itching.

I switched to Garnier Fructis — also used Herbal Essences conditioner along with the Garnier Fructis  because Garnier Fructis is not a shampoo/conditioner all-in-one like Pantene–and for a while all was well. But then the itching started again.

So I switched back to Pantene Pro-V, all was well for a few shampoos but then again the intense scalp itching started again.

I went to get my hair cut last week (the sheep dog look is only becoming on sheep dogs, and I ain’t one!) so I asked the person cutting my hair what I could do to stop the itching as it was driving me nuts, to the point I didn’t even want to wash my hair at all.

She suggested that I use Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Special Shampoo because it strips off the wax buildup and revitalizes the scalp.

I also discovered I had a partially full bottle of Perfections Aloe-Joba Shampoo (Perfections is the brand sold by Perfect Look themselves) which also strips off the wax buildup as well as moisturizing and healing the scalp.

So I’ve used the Aloe-Joba Shampoo for the last two hair washes and I am happy to report that the scalp itching has dramatically decreased.  A side benefit of the Aloe-Joba shampoo is that because of the aloe content in this shampoo it is also a good moisturizer for your skin.

I did buy a 16.9 fluid ounce bottle of the Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Special Shampoo and will start using it once the Aloe-Joba bottle is empty.

As for the 3/4 full bottle of Garnier Fructis fortifying shampoo with reinforced active fruit concentrate and the 1/2 full bottle of Pantene Pro-V, they will find a nice new home—the contents will be poured down the toilet and the bottles will be thrown away.  Although I hate wasting shampoo (or anything else), I cannot force myself to use these products any longer knowing that they cause intense itching for me each time I use them.

I know there are some idiots out there who would FreeCycle opened containers of shampoo and other personal products, but to me that is just carrying the concept of FreeCycling way too far.  I wouldn’t share shampoo, conditioner, or other health/beauty products with total strangers.  I even have problems sharing those type of products with family members.

Saint Vincent De Paul aka SVDP or Adventures in Stupidity

A little over a month ago I went to my local Saint Vincent De Paul offices because I’d been told they could help with space rent.  They stopped helping with rent several months ago but they failed to notify Neighbor Impact of that tiny little unimportant fact.

So I got a food box from them and was told to come back on the first of March.  They have money to help with utility bills on the first of each month.

What I was never told, and didn’t find out until I had waited in line outside in the cold for 20 minutes  is that they do not help with utility bills unless you have a shut-off notice in your hot little hand.  Between paying $45.00 per month myself and the energy assistance grant that Neighbor Impact gave me ($250.00) I am nowhere near having my electricity shut off.

The only other help they offer is help with prescriptions.  While I should be taking my iron pills, thyroid medication, and anti-depressant, I quit doing so in the fall of 2007.  So I don’t need help with prescriptions either.

So I go in today for a food box, thinking that it would be fast and painless because I’d already been in before.  I’d already filled out their forms, talked to their staff, and they had my information on their card.

My assumption was that they kept the forms and card that I filled out a month ago.

After all, that would be the logical, intelligent,  cost-effective, and efficient thing to do, however I forgot they are a bureaucracy the same as any agency, governmental or not.

Logic, intelligence and effective behaviors are NOT rewarded in bureaucracies; what seems to be rewarded is stupidity, inefficiency, spending money in stupid ways, being wasteful of resources, and making the process as complicated and difficult as possible for everyone involved,

So they want me to fill out the same form I filled out a month ago, even though nothing has changed except the fact that I have even less income now (that doesn’t increase the amount of food they give me either).

They do NOT care that I’ve been in before, and its obvious that I’ll be jumping through the same hoops that I did last month.   I said “no thanks” and went to Safeway since I needed to buy cat food and tampons anyway.

I wonder if the people who donate time, money, food, services, etc to Saint Vincent De Paul recognize the level of sheer stupidity and incompetence that runs rampant at even the lowest level of their bureaucracy

FreeCycle Yet Again

Here’s the deal folks, if the stuff I was freecycling was new and in excellent shape I’d either be  selling it or keeping it not giving it away.

I posted 4 wooden dining chairs on FreeCycle earlier today. I did not say the chairs were new or in ‘like new condition.’ I did not even say the chairs were in excellent shape.

I said they were in good shape.  Considering they are probably at least 30 years old–they belonged to my grandmother who has been dead for 5 years and in nursing homes/adult foster care homes for at least another 5 years before that– in my opinion they were in damn good shape.

The person who picked them up was really rather rude. He criticized the chairs repeatedly, tested each one for wobbling,  and then had the nerve to say ‘oh well, they are free.’

Yeah well that’s the point of FreeCycle, isn’t it?

Maybe he should have gone to FreeCycle.org and read up before expecting something that’s being given away for FREE nada zero zilch nothing to be in excellent like new never used never even breathed on or even looked at very hard condition.

And then he acted like he wanted to see the five chairs–one of which is literally an antique and worth a pretty penny–that I was keeping for myself so he could pick and choose from them.  I DON’T THINK SO!!

If he wanted something in like new/never used condition, perhaps he should have gone to Bed Bath and Beyond, Amazon.com, Lowes, or Home Depot and bought himself some NEW chairs.  Then again those chairs would have cost him anywhere from $53.00 EACH to $105.78 for four chairs.

Heck, I could probably have sold these chairs for $5.00 to $10.00 each. $20.00 – $40.00 in my pocket and no rude comments, sounds like a heck of a deal to me. ROFL!!

There are times I really really wonder why I continue to participate in FreeCycle.

The stress of no-shows, threats to steal everything that isn’t nailed down,  and rude people complaining about FREE stuff is starting to outweigh the benefits of making sure stuff doesn’t go to the landfill.

I could take things to Goodwill or the Salvation Army.  I’d get a tax write-off, I’d be in control of WHEN the stuff actually left my house/vehicle, and I wouldn’t have to listen to rude comments about the condition of the items.

The Definition of “Afternoon” or FreeCycle Revisited

So we have another freecycler who thinks that her time is more important than mine, who can’t be bothered to show up ( yes I’ve been home AND awake since 4:30 this morning;  the front door and side door have been open for the last 4 hours; and it’s well after 5:00 pm now), and who can’t be bothered to email me to say please pass these on to the next person in line.

I sent this person 2 emails regarding my freecycle posting.  Her only reply to me, stating that today (Sunday) would work for her and asking for a time that would be good for me, was received at 10:21 am yesterday (Saturday).  I replied at 10:28 am stating that ‘tomorrow afternoon would work best for me–any time after noon’

I’ve heard nothing from her in nearly 30 hours nor has she shown up.

I’m beginning to wonder if this is the same person who wanted the pants referenced in my last post about FreeCycle (begged me to give them to her in fact) and never showed up or emailed me.

To me afternoon is defined as between 12 pm and 5 pm.  Even the dictionary definition of afternoon is between 12 pm and 6 pm.  She’s blown right by MY definition of afternoon and is fast approaching blowing by the dictionary definition of afternoon.

Furthermore, I think she could have replied again yesterday and said see you tomorrow afternoon. Or she could have emailed me today to say I’m sorry I won’t be able to pick up the Spanish flash cards, please pass them on to the next person in line.

I only wish I still had access to my emails from October so I could prove that this is the person who wanted the pants in October and never emailed/showed up.  FreeCycle will remove a participant and ban them from the list after 3 instances of not showing up.

As I said in October, if you can’t be bothered to respond when someone offers you something (either by emailing or showing up) then perhaps FreeCycle is NOT the place for you.  A little common courtesy and treating people the way YOU would like to be treated goes a long way.

Food Stamps Blues Redux

I now have proof that the oh-so-charming young man referenced in the original food stamps blues post went out of his way to humiliate and embarrass me in front of other customers for whatever sick reason his tiny little mind could make up.

I went shopping today knowing that I only had around $19.30 left on the EBT card for March.

I was really careful with what I bought, adding things up in my head, using coupons, buying things that were on special, and buying the cheaper store brand of ice cream rather than my usual Breyers or Haagen Dazs.

However, I still managed to come in over what was left on the card by about $1.30 so I said to the checkout person I’m sorry but there isn’t enough left on the card to quite cover that.

She very politely reversed the transactions, told me exactly what was left on the card (the store is provided a printout that tells them this information), and re-applied that amount to what I owed.  This process took all of 2 minutes maximum.

Now why did the first person back on October 16, 2009 have to be such a jerk and so rude about the whole process?

He literally had to be shamed in front of the other customers in his checkout line to force him into reversing the transactions and then he had to be forced into applying what was left on the card to what I owed.

It’s obvious from what happened today that they even have a policy covering situations like this. This young man was NOT a new employee 5 months ago, as I’d seen him in the checkout stands for literally years before this incident.

Its obvious that the whole process takes 2 minutes or less to complete.  The rude young man back in October took more time than that to try to force me to put the entire balance on my debit card solely because I was inconveniencing him.

I will say that tonight there was nobody behind me in the checkout line, and back in October there were 2 whole people behind me.

Perhaps the rude young man–experienced checker that he supposedly was– just couldn’t cope with a whopping total of THREE whole people in his checkout line, and having his checkout line infinitesimally slowed down by someone who’d never used an EBT card before just was too much for his tiny little brain to handle.

I’m sure that I wasn’t the first person who had ever used an EBT card in his checkout line, I’m also sure that I wasn’t the first person whose total due exceeded what was on their card.

They wouldn’t have a policy in place to handle this if it didn’t happen to people other than me.

They wouldn’t teach their checkers to reverse the transactions and tell the customers what the balance was if I was the only person it ever happened to.

Their systems wouldn’t print out a form with the available balance if the situation only happened to ONE person ever in the history of Safeway!