For many years now, Karen and I have been able to purchase rolls of quarters at our nearest Circle K convenience store. We primarily need quarters for doing laundry. Our ability to obtain quarters is essential, since the washers and dryers do not accept any other form of payment. Imagine my surprise this afternoon when my request was denied.

As I usually do, I went up to the counter and asked to purchase a $10 roll of quarters. The young man at the counter told me the rules have been changed. Now, each customer may obtain a maximum of $2 worth of quarters each day. Apparently, according to this employee, banks charge extra for these rolls and the store was losing money selling them to customers. I asked him if, due to the fact that I am blind and it is difficult for me to find another possible source (especially due to all the construction work in the area), he could possibly consider making an exception in my case or having the manager come to the counter to make a decision. Unfortunately, the manager “had to go home early” and there was to be no empathy for my situation. So, logic would dictate I had two choices; right? I could just take the $2 and go home, or take the $2 and go somewhere else, hoping I could find more quarters. After all, $2 is insufficient to do two loads of laundry when it costs $1 for a wash and another $1 for drying. I wasn’t about to let this guy off easy, especially after the total lack of caring for my situation he had just demonstrated. So, creatively, much to the annoyance of the clerk and the line of customers behind me, I decided to make a third choice.

The rules were that I could have only $2 in quarters. So, after making the purchase, I gave the customer next in line another $2 and asked him to hand it to the clerk for another $2 worth of quarters. After doing this same deal another three times, I finally had the $10 I required. So much for Circle K being “the best and most convenient place to shop”. Though following the rules and getting what I needed, I managed to slow down both the clerk and all the other customers in the process. In fact, one of the people in line behind me had the nerve to whine about this, complaining that I was slowing everyone else down. Do I feel at all sorry about doing this? No! Not a bit. The clerk didn’t show an ounce of empathy toward me, wouldn’t put me in touch with someone else who might be able to make a more favorable decision and, in general, just acted like a jerk about this whole situation. Do I feel at all sorry for the other customers in the line? Heck, no! They’re all driving away from that store to live out their easy lives as people without disabilities, while I walked home for more than half an hour, part of that time being out in the street, through some potentially dangerous construction work!

It really is too bad the battery in my iRiver had gotten low enough so it would no longer record. That would have been excellent material for another podcast!