So I’ve been carrying a $450 account balance at UGA for about a year now. It is, I think, a penalty for staying in my dorm for about a month after I was no longer a registered student.
I’ve been diligently deleting the “Account Balance Due” notices in my Inbox ever since they first appeared, mostly because the only threat UGA offers against non-payment is the inability to register for classes in the coming semester. But since Portland State requires ALL transcripts (even for the credits you’d like to pretend don’t exist), I’m finally having to suck it up and pay them off so the hold can be taken off my records.
I’m on their payment website last night, and I go to enter my credit card information, and I pull down the menu to select ‘Visa’, and…no dice.
Those bastards don’t take Visa.
They take American Express. They take Discover. What the hell? Who does that? Master Card and Visa are bank-backed. AmEx and Discover are not. That’s why everyone takes Visa: because the transaction is considered much more secure than with a standard credit card. When book keepers record sales made on Visa, they record them as cash sales: that’s how secure Visa is. That’s why everyone has a Visa card — because they trust that they’ll be able to use it for things like paying off their student account balance online so they won’t have to make the trek up to the bursar’s office during business hours.
Instantly, I am filled with a combination of dumbfounded chagrin and blog-fueling vitriol so potent and curiously specific that I am transported back to this pleasant scene. It’s like Marcel biting into the goddamn Madeline.
Why won’t these people just TAKE my fucking money?
It’s like the payment is beside the point. It’s not about the revenue, it’s about me and the rest of the student body having to struggle, having to play the game properly.
Nicely played, Finchy. It looks like you’ve won this round.
Anyway, they also take Master Card, and my mom has one of those, so I’m not planning on a pilgrimage to North Campus just yet.
While we’re on the subject of games, Emily is whopping all of your asses in the comment contest. She left 6 on my last entry. It’s like my blog posts get special Emily sub-posts to compliment them, which is more awesome than I can say. Frustrating blue computer cords indeed, my friend. Keep up the good work.
Canada pictures are still on their way. In the mean time, I found these when I was rooting around for my check book this morning, and I figured I might as well post them. They’re from the futile Philadelphia trip (Nicely played as well, Internal Revenue Service. Your hidden job interview sites are a testament to making things difficult at a time when convenience has become king. Ms. Finch tips her cap to you, I am sure.) that I took last January.
This is the only picture actually taken in Philadelphia, go figure. The majority of them are from Virgina and Harrisburg and North Carolina on the way back (I boldly ventured up I-95 on the way up, so I could see all the cities, and retreated back on I-81 through the mountains, when the cities turned out to be less than I had expected [Wow. That was lame. Sorry.]). I don’t even remember what this building is. I’m leaning toward City Hall, though. First person to tell me what it actually is gets a prize.
This is a the first rest stop you will come to when traveling into West Virginia on I-81 South. Ok, sure, it’s not the most exciting picture in the world, but it’s notable (to me, anyway) for several reasons:
1. Cool Shape.
2. This was the first time I’d been to West Virginia, and the beauty of the place was making me feel a lot less like a failure, for some reason.
3. The combined effect of a rest stop with a cool shape in the bucolic middle of nowhere in a state I’ve never been to before made me a little giddy.
4. It was in this rest stop parking lot that I decided to give up the dream of striking it out on my own, and just move to Portland. Throwing in the towel didn’t feel nearly so awful as I thought it would, either. Mostly, there was relief. And Portland has turned out to be a pretty good decision, so far. (Props again to my Comment Champion, the Wayward E).