Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sunday, bloody Sunday

Despite the title, Sunday remains one of my favourite days, but sometimes I still find it frustrating. Or rather, the modern version of it. I suspect that, like a lot of people, my Sundays are fairly traditional. Sometimes I start by going to church, though not as often as I'd like.

The truth is, I find the modern service too happy-clappy and the guitar led modern hymns abysmal. Give me a fire breathing vicar, stirring church organ and a rousing chorus of "For those in peril on the sea" anytime.

Anyway, church aside, I usually take a morning stroll to the local paper shop, buy the Sunday papers and then it's back to chez Stan for a quiet read before we all sit down for a Sunday roast. The simple pleasures, eh?

Except nothing is that simple anymore.

Once upon a time, the morning stroll was a pleasure even in poor weather. Now, with so many cars about and so many shops open, the roads are as busy and as noisy as they are on a Monday morning. Where I could once walk to the shop and enjoy the relative peace and quiet - even listen to the birdsong - it is now an unending assault on the ear drums from cars rushing by. A constant stream - even on a Sunday.

And what about at the shop? Once upon a time you'd find a small queue of three or four people waiting to buy their paper and a packet of B&H. It's pretty much the same now except ...... where the queue used to dissipate quickly as people handed over their cash, picked up their change and went on their way, we now have to wait while they hand over their card, punch in the PIN number, get it wrong, start all over again, wait for the transaction to process in some remote computer somewhere in Asia, wait for the receipt to print out and then remove their card and find the spot in their purse or wallet to put it before picking up their paper and packet of fags and going on their way

Good grief!!! They're buying a paper and a packet of fags and it takes them longer than it does to read the news and smoke a pipe! There were three people ahead of me this morning and I was waiting for nearly 15 minutes to buy a paper. FIFTEEN MINUTES! I even had the right money!

Why do people use their debit cards to pay for a couple of items costing less than a fiver? What is wrong with good old fashioned cash? What is wrong with these people? Apart from the fact it makes a simple transaction take forever, every time they use their card they are opening themselves up to fraud. Virtually the only time I use my debit card is to withdraw cash (and I am incredibly careful about doing that) and occasionally, but not often, for buying petrol.

The only other time I would consider using a card to buy something is a major transaction - buying a new washing machine or something like that - but even then I much prefer to use cash if I can. I don't even buy much from the internet due to the possibility of fraud (trust me, no matter how safe they tell you the transaction is, the reality is that every time you enter your card details onto a website you are leaving yourself wide open to being ripped off).

Apart from all that, it is simply faster and more convenient to use cash - especially for such small purchases. And they call this progress. Well, you know what you can do with it.

Ah well, that's my Sunday rant over. Nearly time for an aperitif before lunch. Enjoy your Sunday and have a good week.

1 comment:

TheFatBigot said...

I switched to cash a couple of years ago because I felt I was probably wasting too much money and had no clear idea where it was going.

It made quite a difference. You really get a feel for how much things cost when required to hand over notes and coins.

I'm sure it's one of the most sensible things I ever did.