I bring you good cheer, and you bring me your pen.

• Thursday, December 17, 2009
So I had one last Christmas-related shopping trip, and wound up calling my kid brother to see if he wanted to give me a lift. He was more than happy to [I think he wanted the chance to tell me about his new girlfriend -- and it's always great to hang with him], but he needed a little money for gas, which was fine as I still had some of my Pittsburgh money left over. While I was waiting on him, I phoned telebank to check my balance, not because I really needed to [I keep pretty good track], but because I was curious if a check I'd written a couple days before had cleared. What the feminine drone of the automated teller told me, though, was that my account was overdrawn. Really overdrawn.

That's right. Looks like someone has stolen my debit card number.

It's typical, I guess, for this time of year. That seems to be the reaction I'm getting from people. I can't for the life of me figure out how to put a freeze on my own account, or cancel the card, so sadly I just have to wait until I can go to the bank in a couple of hours and get all this straightened out. It's really hard not to get down about it though, because I've been trying this year to make Christmas work, and then some stranger out there just cuts me off at the knees. Not that I think this is personal, or targeted, because that would just be crazy, but it feels a little like that, like I pushed at the universe, and the universe decided to push back. And I'm pretty vigilante about this sort of thing, good passwords, secure sites only, keep account information out of my e-mail... what a pain.

I mean, admittedly, it could have been a lot worse, and the havoc this looks to wreck is pretty minimal. So, you know, small favors. Much bigger problems in the universe. And I'm sure there are probably other people who this has happened to, who weren't done shopping, who were holding off for that last bonus to buy their kids presents or their wife jewelry or something, and this would be sort of a Christmas killer.

So dick move random stranger. Dick move.

3 comments:

Sam said...

Dude this happened to me right before senior year at Bennington and I almost couldn't go to school because of it. People are such dicks. But it will all be fine, you just have to go and inform them you aren't the type of person to buy 10 pounds of Gummi Worms or whatever stupid shit was bought with it. They're very understanding at the bank about how flawed their own system is.
Good luck!!

Randall said...

Already done, but thanks for the support. I won't know anything though for the next couple of days, but on the upswing, I went to school with the daughter of one of the employees there, and she'll probably help things move more smoothly.

Glen said...

Sorry to hear about that man, it has to be scary. I have a friend our age who has had this happen to him twice, but he's had it taken care of successfully both times. I'm pretty sure they should be able to give you back all the money that was ill-spent, I mean they should alert you to that kind of stuff anyway when they see weird spending, and especially when you become overdrawn.