I would like to thank my twitter fam for this idea. Cee baby, your suggestions are always welcome. I don’t know why I didn’t think of this issue sooner. ATMs pose a serious problem in Naija & we need to raise more awareness of this. We could organise a pep rally, order sit-outs outside banks, you know, like how oyibos do it……..On second thought, it’s too much stress abeg. Forget I said anything. Let’s just complain about it. Much more fun.
1. THE ATM SWALLOWING YOUR CARD
Just forget it. Forget the card and go home. Pressing the cancel button won’t do anything. I once saw someone kick an ATM out of frustration, & I remember thanking God because I was supposed to use the machine before the guy, but he cut in front of me. You see what they call divine intervention. The feeling is sweet sha. Anyway, I feel ATMs only swallow your card when they know you’re at your most desperate. Like you’re in a rush & you urgently need cash, maybe for the market or food. The ATM literally absorbs the waves of impatience emanating off you & its ‘Petty Code’ self activates. This code is a special sequence that notifies the motherboard that Yes, a Nigerian is using me & Yes, we must hinder his or her matter. The whole the ATM screen shows the ‘Processing’ message is when this demonic exchange occurs. You’ll just be there pressing every button in panic while other customers look at you with pity & impatience.
2. YOUR ACCOUNT BEING DEBITED BUT THE ATM DOESN’T GIVE YOU YOIR CASH
This one dey pain sha. Imagine having just N1800 in your account and you want to withdraw your last card. The ATM will debit your account 1k and withhold your money, & now you’re wondering whether to disturb your bank’s customer care representative for that 1k (long drama) or just to suffer in silence and arrange yourself with that N800. You know the one that hurts the most? You use the ATM, it’ll show you an error message (‘Invalid Card’, ‘Temporarily Unable To Dispense Cash’, ‘Out Of Service’, take your pick) and it returns your card. You start rejoicing because not only did it return your card, but it didn’t debit you unnecessarily. You go about your day happily, filled with the absurd hope that things go better for you from now on. Only for you to get home and receive a text message from your bank. ‘Mr Tolu, N8000 has been debited from your account. Have a good day’. Thunder strike your good day.
3. WAITING IN LINE FOR A LONG TIME, ONLY FOR THE PERSON IN FRONT OF YOU TO FINISH THE MONEY
This situation right here, I blame both the ATM and Nigerians. Customers can be funny. See me, a regular patriot, waiting to withdraw just 1k to buy my morning Okpa. I’m at the very back of a long line, under the hot sun, but I dey hold myself because patience is a virtue. It’s almost my turn and I notice that they person in front of me is so intent on emptying out the ATM. To all the rascals that try to withdraw N300,000 from the ATM instead of heading inside the bank to use the teller, do you think you can make heaven? The ATM should start limiting this sort of nonsense. I propose giving the offending party an electric shock or giving them money so dirty that even our friendly neighbourhood mad man wouldn’t touch it.
4. THE ATM GIVING YOU INCOMPLETE MONEY
This one, you just want to vex me abi? What kind of nonsense is this? Infact, this is double wayo because you’ll short my cash and STILL debit the full amount from my account. Some of my friends laugh and think me paranoid for counting my money after each withdrawal. All I can say is, when this happens to you, just expect to see me standing outside your house holding a ‘I TOLD YOU SO’ banner aloft. I’ve seen a guy shout at an ATM when this happened & one woman tried to calm him down. Two things crossed my mind: ONE: Uncle, e don do. Shouting at the machine won’t change anything. TWO: Madam, leave him to have his moment. Better mind your business before he switches the target of his stream of insults from the ATM to you. Being called a mumu on a Monday morning can ruin the rest of your week.
5. WAITING IN LINE FOR SO LONG ONLY FOR SOME RANDOM PERSON TO APPEAR & CLAIM THAT THEY WERE IN FRONT OF YOU
Dear Sir/Madam, In the book of Petty Chapter 3 vs 14 of the Naija Daily Guide, It clearly states and I quote: ‘If you’re not willing to stand and suffer in line for an ATM, your money is obviously not important to you’. The only people exempt from this commandment are the sick, the pregnant and the elderly. Otherwise, you’re on your own fam. I won’t even engage with you. I’ll just calmly face front and start jamming to tunes on my phone. I just realised, the catchphrase people like to use in this situation never changes. It’s always ‘I dey your front. I’ve been sitting down there’. Heavens forbid I interrupt your sitting occupation. Please continue.
Now imagine if a combination of all 5 situations happen to you at the same time. You’re telling me you won’t run mad?
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