The Neon Wilderness

Saturday, December 02, 2006

My First Time
I was 15 when I started working for Checker's, it was my first real paying job, which posed a problem, I didn't, not had I ever had a bank account, I was wary of banks and assumed that I would be ineligible from joining one or even cashing my checks at one plus banks kind of intimidated me, Eric, one of my friends at work suggested that I go to the check cashing store just up the street, he along with almost every one else at the store used it, so on payday I walked with Eric to the check cashing store, the place was small, about the size of a bodega, at the back of the store were three women who sat on stools behind a big bulletproof window with speakers for talking (two of the women spoke English, one woman always spoke Spanish), and revolving drawers for exchanging checks for cash, after receiving your money you could, at the same window buy stuff from the store, pay bills, buy stamps, wire money via western union, get a payday loan, set up a cell phone or beeper contract, and buy envelopes, between the back where the women sat and the front where me and Eric walked it were lots and lots of shelves and display cases everything even the shelves were under lock and key behind a kind of plexiglas, filled with lighters, cigarettes, cell phones, knives, watches, sunglasses, beepers, jewelry, bottle openers, and all sorts of other similar goods, the prices for all the stuff seemed high but I couldn't be sure not having anything to really compare it to, there was a fee to cash my check, and another fee if I wanted to pay bills there, but there was no use complaining, what other option did I have, when we left me and Eric went a few stores down to the bar, we bought 2 Hurricane's for $2.00 each for 40oz. bottles, and sit outside ad drink it, since the bar didn't have a problem selling me the beer but usually wanted me to leave right after I bought it since I was a minor.

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