There's a new force behind The Universe, aiding in conspiring against Val Thevictorian! That new force is Unfair Robert, the French cousin, twice-removed, of Even Steven. He's a persnickety fellow, demanding the French pronunciation of his name, always looking to shake up the status quo.
On my Thursday errands, I stopped by the School-Turn Casey's for scratchers. My previous stop had been the Sis-Town Casey's, which threw off my carefully calculated cash-in/purchase plan. They did not have the newest $10 ticket that was released on Monday. So I had money left over that had been earmarked for that ticket. Of course the School-Turn Casey's was also bereft of my desired new $10 scratcher.
Thinking on the fly, I named off my pre-planned tickets for this store, while vacillating on whether to use that extra money for two $5 tickets, or an older $10 ticket. At the last split-second, I asked for the $10 Millionaire Money. It's been around since June 22. There have been four new tens issued since then. Something about it caught my eye, whereas none of the fives stood out.
I had my money ready to hand over. I'm pretty good with money. I know how much I'm spending, and have the proper bills ready. Imagine my surprise when the clerk said it would be FIVE DOLLARS MORE than what I'd calculated. Don't you worry about Val. She's not some 10:00 a.m. alcoholic who needs to panhandle waiting customers for enough money to pay. Val carries extra currency in her shirt pocket. Not so much for this kind of emergency, but because sometimes a special ticket might be available that she hasn't seen in a while, and can't resist.
Anyhoo... if I'd been at the Gas Station Chicken Store, I would have questioned the total, and we would have laid out the tickets and both calculated their worth, minus the winners cashed in. But I'm only in this store once a week, usually with different clerks, and I don't like to hold up their line or make a scene. I figured I must have asked for an extra ticket as I was naming off the numbers in the case, and trying to make my decision on the $10 ticket.
Driving down the side street shortcut on my way back to the main road, I pulled those tickets out of my purse and laid them on the console. Don't worry about T-Hoe. I did it as I was stationary at the three stop signs along the way.
Dang it! That clerk had overcharged me FIVE DOLLARS!
I wasn't so much outraged as inconvenienced. It was already after 3:00, and I wanted my Burger King Whopper lunch! I did NOT want to drive the short distance back to Casey's, park, and haul myself in and out of T-Hoe to wait in line, explain my situation, and see if they'd pull the register tape and compare it with the video of the clerk scanning the tickets. For fifty dollars I would. But not for five!
Here's the thing. I don't think the clerk deliberately cheated me in a scam to pocket the money. Sometimes those scanners count a ticket twice, and they have to void it and re-enter. You can hear the beeps as they scan. But I wasn't listening, I was thinking about my tickets.
When that gal cashed out after her shift, I'm sure her drawer would show that she was five dollars over. Unless she'd made another mistake and given somebody back five dollars too much! That actually happened to me in that store with a guy clerk, and I DID go back and give him the money. That was different. I'm no thief.
Anyhoo... as I told The Pony back home, "That girl might get fired for being over, and get a better job. Or she might have accidentally made back five dollars she gave out in error, and saved her job. IF I had gone back, I might have gotten in a car accident on the way home. You never know what could change if you alter your intended actions by even a few seconds. I'm fine with it. Five dollars isn't going to put me in the poorhouse."
I gave The Pony a $3 ticket that I'd bought with the intention of giving it to him. He declined at first. "No. I don't want to take your ticket! You're out five dollars."
I insisted. The Pony scratched.
"Mom. You're going to regret that decision. My ticket is a $5 winner!"
Meh. You can't go wrong bestowing generosity. Karma is accumulating.
I went down to my lair. After lunch I scratched my tickets. From the ones purchased at that Casey's, I had a $5 winner. And a $20 winner. And THIS:
That's a $100 WINNER! I got the WIN ALL symbol there in the middle, where I quit scratching the numbers, because there was no need, I'd won all the prizes.
The WIN ALL is not common. I had to look at the symbols to see what I'd won.
Contrary French Cousin (twice removed) Unfair Robert is no match for Even Steven!