Monday, October 26, 2009
Adventures in Banking
Getting ready to start a new job had me thinking about some of the other places I've worked. My first “real” job was as a bank clerk doing loan closings. Man, did I see some strange stuff.
For example, what do you do when you're explaining a particularly complicated document, and the customer's toup starts sliding off? I'm not aware of any protocol for that. Do you say anything? Make hand gestures? What if it hits the floor and crawls away?
I opted for not looking directly at him or his fuzzy pet tarantula. I also managed to finish my coffee without snarfing it through my nose.
His wife was sporting quite the hairpiece herself. It was huge, and apparently bought from the Dolly Parton Wig Emporium, circa 1982. Also, bright blue eyeshadow and three inch nails. Like Lil from The Squidbillies.
How about a customer decked out in biker gear, spikes all over his jacket, and yellowed fingernails filed into points??? Actually, Beelzebub turned out to be quite gentlemanly and polite. He also taught History at a university in NYC.
Then there was the lady who let her two year old to walk up and down on the closing room table, the bank documents, and the lawyer's paperwork. She became incensed when told to remove said child from the table, even though the bank documents were covered in muddy shoe prints.
Here's my personal favorite. No sooner had I walked into the closing room and introduced myself, the customer stood up, stuck his fist in my face and said he'd punch me if I didn't remove certain bank charges.
I could've understood the anger if I'd been bitchy or something, but I was in the room for all of six seconds. There wasn't time for me to get snippy. I hadn't even warmed up.
I think I was so shocked by his asshole-itude, I didn't have the common sense to get scared. I'm just standing there thinking: “Are you kidding me? Who threatens a 5' 2'' bank clerk in front of witnesses? And no ski mask?”
What I managed to finally say was, “Uh...yeah. I'll be right back.”. I found the nearest bank VP and told him I was NOT going to do a closing that required me to have judo skillz. Kindly send in the nearest armed guard. Kthxbai.
The wussy veep actually had the balls to tell me to go back in. He thought I was being a “histrionic female”. I told him to suck it (in bank lingo, of course). He gave in, and went to see what the customer was upset about. He never doubted me again - the idiot got a chair thrown at him. Histrionic my ass.
There were fun times too. We had a cavalcade of (harmless) crazy people working in the mortgage department - just to lighten things up. Like wacky Darlene who gave us the “bathroom weather report”, an hourly update on the air quality in the ladies room. Apparently one of our co-workers was rotting from the inside out.
Darlene also had a repertoire of off color songs to drive our manager mad. That and her clog-dancing between cubicles. You always knew when Darlene was in the room.
Then we had Jenny, with her overzealous burping habit, used for comic relief (it was probably acid reflux, but this was long before anyone knew what that was).
She's the only person I know of that had “needs to control gas” as a goal on her yearly review.
Yep. Good times.