8.04.2011

Chocolate and money

On Tuesday night I joined Kelsey, Jeri, Missy, and my sister Jenny at Pizzeria 712 for a "let's get together before Kelsey's baby Sharky makes his appearance" dinner. And, as an additional bonus, it turns out that Janssen and Kayla were in town and sitting at the very next table with their husbands. They recognized my sister Jenny first and then came over to say hello. I'm so glad they did, and that I got to meet them in person. During our conversation I marveled at just how pretty they both are and really wished that I'd done something about my face that day.



I ordered their butter lettuce salad, which I did not take a picture of, but it was beautiful. It had this amazing bleu cheese dressing and thick sliced bacon and thin sliced radishes and oh . . . it was good. Then we overheard the server telling some women near us about the desserts and as soon as the words "Amano chocolate cheesecake" wafted over to us we all froze in our seats and started breathing shallowly. Or maybe that was just me. I don't remember. Missy and I got one to share and . . . yeah. I am glad no one got a picture of the faces I was making because they probably don't belong on the cameras or computers of nice people.



During dinner, the conversation turned somehow to banks, and I mentioned a recent experience I had while depositing checks. Remember how I've talked before about the Wells-Fargo people, and about how they are trained to make way way way too much conversation with you to the point of stalkerness? Well, they still do it.

Jenny: Why were you even going inside? Why not use the drive-through?

Jeri: Oh, no, the drive-through can be worse. They talk to you the whole time. Once I kept my windows rolled up so that I could fill out my deposit slips in peace without having to talk to anybody about my day, or my weekend, or about savings options for my kids. Then I cracked the window and tried to shove my slip through without drawing any attention. But the poor girl who worked there saw me and was like "HimynameisKristen----"

Me: See? See? I just want to say, "Look. I just want to deposit my checks. I am not an 84-year-old woman who is coming in here because I need the human interaction."

Kelsey: "This is not my bar."

Me: Exactly!

(later)

Me: I think we should make cue cards to hold up.

"I am fine."

"My day is going fine."

"I am running errands."

"Yes, I have been told about children's savings accounts."

"My weekend? Well, from the looks of things I will still be STANDING HERE ANSWERING PERSONAL QUESTIONS AND POSSIBLY GETTING A MAMMOGRAM on the weekend."

When I came home I told GH about our conversation. He works for a bank, so he knows the flip side of the coin.

GH: You know they're not making conversation with you because they want to, right? They are told to do it.

Me: Ugh. Well it annoys me. They want their employees annoying people?

GH: The marketing surveys say differently. People want friendly human interaction from their banks.

Me: I don't want that! Young, secure people don't need that.

GH: Young, secure people don't go into banks. Why were you even in there?

Me: Because I have to deposit checks sometimes!

GH: You could do that online.

Me: What??

GH: Yeah. You can scan your checks and send them in.

Me: Huh . . . mutter mutter.

GH: Most of the people who come in are chatty people. They want to make conversation. They come to the bank FOR that very reason. If people don't know your name or they don't engage you then they write dirty letters to the bank. "I went to the [such-and-such] branch and nobody said hi! I will never go back. Never."

So there you have it. Does anybody else have opinions about this? Or about Amano chocolate? Please share.

24 comments:

Camille said... [reply]

Woah. Small world.

Janssen is my cousin and I had no idea that we read the same blog...

AmandaStretch said... [reply]

Back before I banked with an institution that has given me the option to deposit checks via iPhone, even at midnight which, let's face it, is the time you remember to do such things (USAA - holla!) - I went to a bank that had a branch just down the street from my library. I wasn't there all THAT often, but enough to recognize the tellers. I don't need them to be super chatty, but at least act like they recognize me and smile and maybe say my name. Even USAA, on the rare occasions I have to call them for something, is super friendly and human, but not overly so. It's part of the reason I switched. Don't chat me up about every last thing, but at least be a human.

As for the chocolate, well, now I would like some.

j said... [reply]

My first checking account was with a bank that charged me .25 or something every time I interacted with a teller, so I just learned to handle all of my transactions via ATM. You can totally make a deposit at the ATM and you don't have to talk to anyone.

FoxyJ said... [reply]

I almost always use the ATM for deposits. Sometimes I use the drive-thru but they've never been chatty with me. The last time I went to the dentist, the assistant was really chatty and it bugged me.

I love P712; it's right by my house and everytime I drive by I wish I could eat there more often. Mmmm... Have not tried the chocolate cheesecake yet.

FoxyJ said... [reply]

Also, nothing to do with your post, but I did want to tell you that the Provo Library has a part-time position available in Children's. It's an awesome place to work :)

AmyJane said... [reply]

I have a love-hate thing with the chatting. They do it at our Fred Meyer too, which I frequent often. Although, here it kind of takes on a small town, we're all friends vibe. We recognize the tellers and the cashiers and they tell me how beautiful my kids are and comment on how big the baby is getting and other nice things. I like that. Does that make me old and insecure? :)

Nemesis said... [reply]

Amyjane, people can compliment my little Dark Lord all they want. It's when they want me to ANswer all those QUEStions. Can they not sense that I am not sending out a vibe indicating that I want to report to them on all my current and future movements?

Desmama said... [reply]

For me it depends on the situation I'm in whether I feel like chatting or not. If I'm getting a wax, I don't like chattiness. Even a haircut or some other personal-care-type thing, I kind of like just being quiet. But when I've been to the bank (which isn't all that often, truthfully) they're friendly but not to an obnoxious degree.

Kimi said... [reply]

I am laughing right now because I WAS one of those not too long ago. Although I really wasn't that good at chatting it up unless I knew the person. When I worked at Zions they had what was called a "secret shopper" who could be just any regular old customer who got sent a survey in the mail, that if completed, they would receive like 5 or 10 bucks or something. Anyway, they had to come into the bank and rate us on a scale of 1-10 on like 20 different questions on how well we treated them and if we mentioned or offered them any other products. If we ever got 100% we received a bonus of 50 bucks in our paycheck. AND if we ever got 100% on top of balancing for the month we got a 100 dollar bonus. Anyway, not that you really cared to hear all of that, but there was definitely incentive to be chatty and call the person by name. On the flip side, if I could tell someone wasn't wanting to be bothered I was more than happy to leave them alone. :) I guess you need to be the one to send in a letter saying how much you appreciated that the teller didn't ask you any questions. haha

G said... [reply]

I'm with you. Love the ATM so I can avoid talking to anyone and cannot fathom why there are always so many people lined up at the drive-thru.

Christian said... [reply]

I hate how chatty they are at Wells Fargo. Which makes me the rude customer they hate. At one branch, I gave up my space in line because I couldn't stand the teller. When the next teller asked me why, I told him it was because she talked too much and I couldn't stand her voice. Also, she always started off her interaction with, "How's your day going so far?" At 8:30 in the morning. If I have a day going so far at that time of the day, you *really* don't want to hear about it.

Personally, I don't have any problems telling a teller (or cashier at a fast food place) to talk less and work more.

Nemesis said... [reply]

Christian, hey! It's great to hear from you, and I will refrain from asking how your day is going so far, and what you will be doing for the rest of your afternoon, evening, and weekend. ;-)

goddessdivine said... [reply]

This is why we need robots to replace humans. No chit chat. Or maybe, we could find a way to do everything via internet/computers, so we'd NEVER have to leave home and/or interact with anyone ever again. On-line church anyone?

Are we reaching a point where we're so comfortable with technology and uncomfortable with human interaction or want to avoid it altogether?

;-)

goddessdivine said... [reply]

Ok. You know just being a little tongue-and-cheek.

ATMs all the way! Not only for minimal human interaction but parking right next to the machine and walking six feet, pushing some buttons, and retrieving cash or depositing $ is WAY easier. And quicker. I'm all about not wasting time with lame errands.

Jenny said... [reply]

I would go nuts if I got asked 20 questions while trying to fill out a deposit slip. There is a wide margin between being friendly and being an overly chatty, intrusive stranger. You should write the manager at your wells fargo.

emandtrev said... [reply]

It looks like I just found a new restaurant to try!

I don't mind the interaction I have at our banks (Chase, Zions, and USAA--yes, we have our accounts all over!), but the actual occasion I have to go into the bank or drive-thru is kind of few and far between.

I will admit that the last time I went through the drive-thru at Zions, it kind of had a Big Brother feel to it. The teller was perfectly nice and not annoying at all, but it surprised me just a little when after she greeted me that I looked up from gathering my slip and checks to see her just waiting and watching. I kind of had the "Oh! Hi. Again." sort of reaction.

jeri said... [reply]

I like people. I do. I like when people talk to me, especially girls who cut my hair. For me, I think it's when the teller crosses the line of friendly chatty (you have to say SOMETHING after all) into total phony baloney. Checkers at Macey's totally have it down.

How is your day?
Are you having a nice summer?
Your baby is cute.
Artichokes and chocolate chips? Looks like you have crazy plans for dinner!

But the WF tellers crossed The Line and are way out in foul territory.

HELLO MY NAME IS BRADLEY AND I'M YOUR SUPER NEW BEST FRIEND AND DO YOUR CHILDREN HAVE A SAVINGS ACCOUNT AND DOES THAT ACCOUNT HAVE FUN PLANS FOR THE WEEKEND DID I MENTION MY NAME IS BRADLEY WHYAREYOUROLLINGUPYOURWINDOW???

Nemesis said... [reply]

Bwah ha hahahah. Jeri nailed it, y'all.

The Atomic Mom said... [reply]

Having worked at a bank in my younger days, I can say, I hated the commandment to talk and be chatty with the folks. Serioulsy, I didn't even care. You also might consider just going to the ATM, you can do most banking transactions at the ATM, and sometimes they're even drive up. No need to haul The Dark Lord out of his car chair even!

Janssen said... [reply]

You were SO nice (I am mega awkward in "meeting people" scenarios).

Also, my mother-in-law took us to the Amano store last week (she'd sent me two bars for Mother's Day which makes her, quite possibly, the best mother ever because, hi, isn't it the DAUGHTER that sends things, not the mother?), and now I cannot stop talking about it.

Or thinking about it.

Kayla said... [reply]

I echo Janssen, it was so awesome to meet you! We were a smidge star struck. We've only be reading you since the dawn of blogging time.

And the cheesecake was super good. We loved the panna cotta too.

annie (the annilygreen one) said... [reply]

shoot, now i'm going to have to go get more of that cheesecake. my good friend is the office manager at amano, and it takes all my self-control to not call him up and have him bring me cases of it on his way home every day.

and i must look super grumpy because i think i've only been asked about children's accounts once at wellsfargo. i always drive off with immense appreciation for how little they talk to me.

Bridget said... [reply]

This post made me laugh so much!

Kelsey said... [reply]

Um...I didn't know you could scan checks and send them in WITHOUT actually going to the bank. What a revelation...

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