A customer handed Singh a $20 bill from 1929. A quick internet search revealed that it’s valued at around $30 to $35 right now. I told him to hold onto it, for it should go up in the years to come.
Pretty cool to see one still in circulation….
A couple of interesting tidbits to note as I finish off my morning accounting and tackle the early birds.
1. A big bag of homemade gingerbread cookies. From a customer I assume.
2. Christmas lights on the window. Umm 2 days ‘after’ Christmas. Also from a customer I assume.
I’m sure Singh has the 411. To be continued….
Thursday December 26, 2013:
I just witnessed a woman drive right past me, pull into a completely PITCH-BLACK Citgo and position herself to the pump. 45 seconds later it finally dawned on her that they are not open yet.
She pulls out and comes in here for a $20 fill.
Delta Gas 1, Common Sense 0.
The time is now 5:50am. Good morning folks!
Tuesday December 24, 2013:
THIS JUST IN! The executive order has been given. Unlike Thanksgiving where we worked until 2pm, this gas station will be OFFICIALLY CLOSED tomorrow.
Singh fought me on this. He wanted to come in. I told him if I see a text message saying that my alarm has been disengaged, I’m calling the cops, reporting a break-in, and having him arrested. He got the point. Sometimes, we have to force ourselves to slow down and decompress for one day.
The diabolical nonsense will recommence at 5:30am on the 26th. Cheers y’all!
Tuesday December 24, 2013:
Customer pulls up and asks for a quart of oil. I run in and grab it for him.
“Yo, I’ve heard on the news about gas stations selling fake oil. You sure this is real?”
Apparently I had an expert lube man on my hands. He examines the bottle closely then peers at the office window.
“Well, why can’t I have the red one?”
“Cause that’s automatic transmission fluid.”
Riiiiight. The moral of the story kids?
Just because it’s Christmas that doesn’t mean red is always good….
Folks, remember last week when I said that sometimes it takes every bit of strength to refrain from totally going off on a customer? Well, here’s Case Study #433. And the sad thing is that the bitch wasn’t even a customer!
9:54am: A customer pulls up for $10 of gas (The SUV on the right). Seconds later her friend drives in to talk to her. Forget the fact that we have an entire parking lot here. Where does she plop her car? Right on the bay as if she’s getting gas. I let it slide, for I had just finished up with the customer behind her.
10:01am: A full 7 minutes go by. An SUV pulls up.
“Ma’am, can you please move your car? There’s a truck behind you.”
I wait 10 seconds. She’s still gabbing away.
“Ma’am please. There’s a guy waiting for gas.”
She gives me a dirty look and then slowly walks back to her car.
“Okay sheesh. You’re not going to shoot me are you?”
“That was a joke right? Please tell me that was a joke.”
“Oh no joke. I know how you people are.”
“I have a business to run. Just go.”
Uh huh. I’m not quite sure what she meant by that, but it definitely wasn’t a rosy compliment.
Once again, I took a deep breath, clinched my fist, and let her drive off.
Yaaaaay for holiday kindness….
Monday December 23, 2013:
What’s grosser than gross?
Putting money in your mouth.
What’s grosser than that?
Handing that money to your ungloved sexy brown gas attendant.
What’s the grossest thing of all?
Remembering that you used to make these stupid “What’s grosser than gross?” jokes when you were a little kid….
Much love and appreciation to the customer who brought us these. Every time I’m ready to give up on humanity, a person like this comes around and does something nice. Good folks still very much exist. Cheers!
Sometimes, it takes every bit of strength I have to bite my tongue and take the abuse. Today, I succeeded.
A guy pulls up and proceeds to sit in his truck. I tend to the cars on the bay. 3 minutes later he gets out. Says nothing. Just stares aimlessly. I ask “Do you need help with anything Sir?”
“No, I’m standing out here for my health!!!!”
Turns out that he wanted a propane tank filled.
#1, He parked no where close to the propane filling station.
#2, His tank was still sitting in the car, so I would not have known what he came in for.
#3, He sat in his car for 3 minutes then stepped out without saying “Excuse me, can I get a tank filled?”
I clinched my fist, took a deep breath, apologized to him for the wait, and filled his propane tank.
Then, I retreated back into my office while sensational visions of me spitting in his face took me to nirvana….
Sooo. Ummm. Yeaaah. One interesting tidbit to note. There has not been a trace of snow here in days. That means this woman has been driving like ‘that’ for days.
Ladies, you’re reeaaallly not helping me change my view of female SUV drivers….
Wednesday December 18, 2013:
Let’s talk about “journalistic integrity” or lack thereof.
Yesterday, I posted a video from NBC 10 Philadelphia who ran a story about the unfortunate fatal hit and run that occurred in front of my gas station and the 7-Eleven.
I was already home when NBC came into town. Today I learned that they persistently tried to get the surveillance footage from my camera. In fact, they came back around ‘twice’ and asked Dave and Singh for it. At one point, they even asked them to call me so I can authorize it.
Are you fucking kidding me? It’s not about some jerk off media analyst scoring “the big one.” A despicable crime has been committed and a life has been lost. The video is in the hands of Ocean County’s Criminalistics Investigation Unit. If law enforcement chooses to release it, then so be it. Right now, it’s an ongoing investigation.
Listen, I do understand the job function of a journalist. However, have some God damn class and compassion….
Wednesday December 18, 2013:
A woman just came in for a fill. Instead of leaving once it was done, she began plucking her beard. Car pulls up behind her. I wait 15 seconds. Still pruning those hedges. Finally I had to knock on her window and ask her to please move up.
Huh. Interesting place to do some ‘scaping. I was going to offer my impeccable grooming services, but a little birdie told me that ‘too’ much customer service will have negative repercussions….
Tuesday December 17, 2013:
*Please click over to watch the video and then read on.*
At 5:54pm yesterday evening, a South Toms River resident died right in front of my gas station in a hit and run incident.
Last night and again this morning, I worked with the South Toms River Police and Ocean County’s Criminalistics Investigation Unit. My surveillance camera captured the heinous crime, but unfortunately it was too far out to make a positive ID on the vehicle. The driver is still at large.
If you have any information regarding this accident, please call the authorities. Praying that Mr. Gaughan’s family will get some justice in the near future.
As of now, I will not post my surveillance video of the hit and run. If I am cleared to do so, then I will, as it may help the public in the investigation.
“At this time we are looking for any witnesses that may have seen a vehicle leaving the area — possibly a small, black vehicle with possible damage to its front passenger side and windshield.”
Monday December 16, 2013:
“The Air Costs $1. The Truth is For Free.”
Customer pulls up to the air pump. After a minute, he walks towards me.
“Is the machine not working?”
“It works. Hang on. Let me finish up with this customer.”
I grab some quarters and walk up. I drop one in. The machine turns on.
“See, it works. You only put in 75 cents.” Then he gets defensive.
“No, I didn’t. I put in $1.”
“No, you put in 75 cents. But, that’s okay. That quarter is on me. Have a nice day.”
That machine has had no issues. Several customers have used it this morning with no complaints.
The Moral of The Story kids? If you know you’re wrong, be a man and admit to it.
The customer is NOT always right….
“The $6.61 Watch.”
8:17am. A customer with his daughter in the back seat pull up for a $30 fill. I set the pump, I run in to swipe the card.
Yes. I know that I promised to stop handling it that way, but I was tired, cold, and cranky. So, leave me alone.
Anyways, he had insufficient funds. I run back out to stop the pump. $12.61 had already been dispensed.
“Your card declined. You owe me $12.61.” He opens up his wallet. He had $6 in there and hands it over. “Okay. Now, you owe me $6.61.” Aaaand then the fun began.
“I don’t have any more money on me. I’ll come back later.”
“Sorry, this is a business. You can’t leave without paying me.”
“Dude, it’s just $6.”
“The boss takes it out of my paycheck. $6 is a lot of money when you’re an hourly worker. Call somebody.”
He tries calling his girlfriend, but to no avail.
“Give me your driver’s license or cell phone as collateral and I’ll let you go.”
“Dude, this is fake as shit. Give me your real one.”
“What do you mean? That is my license.”
“I wasn’t born yesterday man.”
Turns out that he’s been driving without a license. It has been revoked.
This went on for 20 minutes! Half way through, he tried to turn it around and blame me for everything. By that point, I was frozen to the bone and livid as hell.
“Listen man, if I was truly a fucken asshole, I would call the cops on you right now and you’ll be arrested once they run your record. All I want is $6.61. I’m not your financial consultant. It’s not my responsibility to tell you how much money you have in your account.
You keep refusing to give me your phone, ok fine so just give me your watch and you can get the hell out of here.”
“You really want my watch?” in a cynical tone.
“Yes, did I stutter?!”
Folks? I just bought a crappy watch for $6.61. Will he come back? No shot in hell. Every part of me wants to call the police just out of principle and have him arrested.
But it’s the holidays. So, I’ll let it go. For his little DAUGHTER’S sake.
Merry Christmas asshole. You’re welcome….
Friday December 13, 2013:
Guy pulls in with a newer diesel pickup.
“Hey can you put $1 of kerosene in here?”
“Are you serious?”
“Cause #1, While I do understand the relationship between the 2 fuels, I would never do that and take on any potential liability issues. And #2 at $6 a gallon, what the heck is $1 gonna do?!”
And in unrelated news, the next person to hand me money all crumpled up in this bitter cold will get a punch in the face.
And by “punch in the face” I actually mean a “Thank you. Have a nice day. It was an absolute pleasure to serve you. You’re amazing.”
Thursday December 12, 2013:
I think we need to start giving out free basic math lessons here. Stay with me on this one.
Customer pulls up with an industrial size propane tank. To give you some perspective, it has the capacity of 6 grill sized tanks. He asked us to fill it up.
“Okay. It’s $4.50 per gallon.” Customers nods and give us the go ahead.
The sucker took 26 gallons. $117 was his bill. Like a deer in headlight this guy.
“That’s ridiculous. The other day I spent $75 elsewhere.”
“How much was it per gallon?”
“I don’t know.”
“How many gallons went into the tank?”
“I don’t know.”
This kept going on and on.
Finally, he calls his boss. He tells the guy to verify the count on the meter and to go ahead and pay us. We walk him out of our office and back to the propane filling station. Singh shows him, for like the 90th time. Finally, he forks over the company credit card.
Total time wasted? 15 minutes.
Arithmetic is for losers. Obviously….
Wednesday December 11, 2013:
Let’s make a list of “The Most Ridiculous Things Said To Me This Morning,” shall we?
I’ve learned to accept “Stay warm” as a term of compassion, even though it is physically impossible to do so while working outdoors. It’s a dumb expression in my book. But, anyways. Let’s begin.
1. “Your fingers must be ready to fall off, huh? You should get a real job in an office or something.”
2. “You must sure miss the heat of your country.”
3. “So, does this cold make you want to go back to your homeland?”
4. “You should stay in that office as much as you can.” Meanwhile she pulled me out for $3 of gas and it took an additional 2 minutes to unfreeze her gas cap.
Please standby. I’m sure there will be others as this diabolical day progresses….
Tuesday December 10, 2013:
Customer pulls up and his passenger jumps out and heads to the 7-Eleven.
“Get me a medium coffee with 10 sugars.”
Holy shit, really?! Forget the health atrocities that have already wreaked havoc in his body. Forget the fact that if the sun took a wee wee on the white snow coming down, it still wouldn’t be as yellow as this guy’s teeth.
Let’s just talk about the senses. How in the living hell does that even remotely ‘taste’ good?!
Thursday December 5, 2013:
Top 5 Reason Why You Should Never Talk On Your Cell Phone As You Enter a Gas Station, #2: “It makes you say stupid things.”
11:00am. A customer comes in and pulls up to the kerosene pump. Takes out his heater.
“Fill it up.” He says while his iPhone is glued to his ear.
I was currently in the bathroom. Singh handled this transaction. Came out to 8 gallons. He owed us $48.
“$48?! I only have $30.” He says to Singh. I soon exit the lavatory (It was sensational). I step in.
“I didn’t know it was going to be that much. I’ll come back tomorrow when I get paid.”
I love it when customers think they can make up their own rules.
“Sorry. Business is business. You can not leave here without giving us the full amount. Nothing personal. Boss man will kill me. It comes out of my own paycheck. Sorry, but you will have to call somebody.”
“There was no price listed.”
Both my ears and Singh’s ears perk up like 2 dogs.
“Sure there is.” We walk back out to the pump.
“See? There’s a nice big 6 on top of the pump.”
And heeeeere’s Reason #2 illustrated. Ready for this?
“Oh. Is that what’s that’s there for?!”
Really dude. Really? THAT’S your defense? You think gas stations put numbers on signs just for shits and fucken giggles?!
Finally, at 11:30am a friend arrives and we get paid in full.
Never a dull moment here. Never a dull bloody moment….
Thursday December 5, 2013:
Every now and again, an experience here leaves me bitterly speechless in all the wrong ways. Stay with me on this one.
A couple pull in. The woman is driving, with the man in the passenger seat.
“Good morning. What can I get you?”
The woman doesn’t respond. In fact she’s not even looking at me. Eyes straight ahead.
From the passenger side, I hear “You can tell him how much you want.”
Very quietly, she turns her head and whispers “$20.”
During the fill, she remained staring at the windshield.
At the end, the guy hands her the 20 and signals her to give it me.
“Thank you. Have a nice day.” I get no response. She drives off.
To be clear, I know nothing of their situation. But, from where I was standing it looked like mental captivity.
I sure hope I am wrong about this….
Wednesday December 4, 2013:
“Generosity, Lies, Paranoia.”
Sounds like a box office thriller, doesn’t it? But, no. It’s just yet another bizarre experience we can add to the Costco size box of weird experiences I’ve had here.
A fairly regular customer of mine stops in to top off his car. He tips me a buck each and every time. Asks to use the bathroom quite a bit. Never makes a mess in there, so it doesn’t bother me.
This last time was no different. His car was already pretty full. $8 was his tab. I waited for him by the pumps as he did his business in the water closet. Took a long time. Finally he comes out, but all pissed off.
“Did you just say that this guy in here is going to score me $100 worth of drugs?”
“No Sir. That definitely wasn’t me. I was standing by the pumps.”
“I heard you. It was your voice. I don’t sell drugs bro. I have plenty of money. I’m an accountant. I have a $1,000 right in my pocket. Here I’ll show ya.”
He reaches into his jacket.
“Bro, I don’t need to see it. Trust me. That wasn’t me. I was standing by the pumps the whole time. If you don’t believe me, I can show you the surveillance footage.”
Customer begins walking to his car. I follow.
“How much was it? $8? Here.”
He hands me a $20 bill. I begin to make change.
“No. That’s for you. I don’t think I’m going to come around here anymore.”
“Thank you so much. But, I can’t accept a $12 tip on $8 of gas.”
“Keep it. I don’t need the money. Merry Christmas. You won’t see me ever again.”
Ummm….okay? What the fuck just happened here?! Guilty much?