Disillusionment is the bad taste left in your mouth after the canned spinach which your parents feed you only after having pumped you full of Popeye cartoons and stories of how canned spinach is like green lifesavers. It is not the taste of canned spinach, as inherently revolting as that taste is. It is the taste of betrayal.
People had told me that opening a bank account was exciting. I had seen the squeeze bottles, the headbands, the gym bags that banks gave away, and I was ready to jump on the bandwagon. I figured that as I entered the door people in pinstripes would line up and throw dollar bills and small gifts into my open arms while a hidden orchestra played Beethoven’s 5th, or maybe Ode to Joy. I would walk up a red carpet to a teller who strangely resembled Tom Cruise, brush the confetti from my hair and accept a large wad of cash. Such was not the case.
I sensed something was wrong when I walked in the room and all of the tellers refused to make eye contact with me. Perhaps I had forgotten to wear my big sandwich board that reads “yes, I am solvent.” Perhaps they could not tell from my sweatshirt and sneakers that I was They obviously had something to hide, and as I soon found out, that something was an extreme lack of social skills. When I finally found one who would look in my general direction, she seemed oddly pained, as if she were dealing with some obscure variety of squid.
“We have a lovely program I’d like to recommend to you,” she winced, looking somewhere to the left of my shoulder. “It’s called the Old, Rich Fart account and requires a balance of half a million dollars at all times.”
Perhaps those were not her exact words. The figures also may be slightly off. Maybe she said two thousand in lieu of two-hundred and fifty thousand, but I saw the look in her eyes and what it translated to was “Die, minion scum.”
At this point I attempted a politely strangled gasp of horror and she ceased talking.
“Is this a problem?” she asked.
I agreed that yes, there was a slight issue. I then explained that as I was neither old nor a fart I would be looking for another type of account that was more flexible and whose balance requirement did not exceed thirty-six cents.
This did not go over well with her and I’m not sure exactly what happened next. I think I remember seeing sparks fly out of her eyes and a strange glow and then lots of little green men. The piece of paper (strangely burned) I found in my hand when I awoke in my room informed me that the mayfly population would pass through multitudes of generations before I would be able to activate my ATM card.
It is true that most people do not wait to open an account until the only liquid assets they posses are thirty-six cents in pennies sitting in a jar on their dresser. Most people, if forced due to tidal waves, hurricanes, burning lava, or other apocalyptic disasters to wait until their cash flow is reduced to less than the market price of bubble gum would rush out and rectify this situation as soon as the radiation cleared. But this is not the point. The point is that if I needed to take out a large sum of unmarked bills and fly down to South America I could not, at least not until after thousands of little mayflies had succumbed to old age. If I wanted to pay my phone bill, this too would be impossible. The point is that bank tellers are not supposed to be material girls. The point is that I did not receive a single promotional gift or piece of confetti. The point is that people said it would be a good experience and they were wrong. The point is you have to be careful who you trust. The point is that spinach may have worked for Popeye, but he was a cartoon, and I bet he killed all his tastebuds with that big pipe anyway.