by John W. Herbert
I had yet another run-in with the dreaded lunch room candy machine. Occasionally, I have been known to deposit money in this machine and in return have been rewarded with sweet, sweet candy.
Yesterday at lunch, I decided to need a Twix bar. It cost $1.00.
I deposited my coinage, four quarters. But the fourth quarter was returned; our candy machine is known for its random rejection of coins of recent vintage. I was 75 cents in, but I still needed another 25 cents to complete the purchase and receive my sweet, sweet candy.
All was not lost, as I also had a twoonie, more than enough for my chocolate-craving induced purchase. (For our non-Canadian viewers, a twoonie is a $2 coin). However, before depositing the twoonie, I felt I had better retrieve my three quarters. I pressed the coin return button and the machine promptly spat out three dimes. 30 cents.
"What the [expletive deleted]?" I shouted. Somehow my three quarters had been transmogrified into 3 dimes. The machine just ate 40 of my cents!
"[Expletive describing a physical act deleted] machine!"
But still the Twix bar called. Yes, I was out 40 cents, but I still had the twoonie, so I still could buy my bar and satisfy my caramel and chocolate covered cookie lust.
Against my better judgment, I dropped my twoonie in the slot. I pressed the button. The Twix bar fell from the rack into the retrieval slot at the bottom of the machine. And my change... my change... where's my $1.00 change?!?
"[Expletive describing a bodily function deleted]! Where's my [expletive describing the physical act of love deleted] change??!?"
The machine kept my change. Why? I don't know. It certainly wasn't out of change because a moment ago it had just eaten three of my quarters!!!
"[Expletive describing anatomical parts deleted]!!"
I had paid $2.40 for a Twix bar! This wasn't the first time the candy machine had eaten my money and short-changed me. I vowed to never ever buy another piece of sweet, oh so sweet candy from this mechanical hell spawn again.
"Never again! I'd sooner starve! Or crash from a sugar low than to risk my precious money on your unpredictable mechanical folly! Curse you, you mechanical [expletive describing the physical act of a love with a small domestic farm animal deleted]!"
Today, I dutifully deposited $1.00 and quietly ate my blessed Twix bar.
I am so weak.
originally published in UTOH #18, October 2006