Show me your ID…

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Some of our laws just puzzle me. Well, let me rephrase this a little bit, it’s not so much the laws, but the way they are being enforced. Let me give you an example, we all agree, that alcohol and cigarettes should not be sold to people under age…under the age of 21 to be exact.

The law took place to prevent underage drinking and smoking and that’s a good thing, but I  think that this law should be used with common sense. Meaning, when a sales clerk is in doubt about the age of the customer…go ahead, ask for the ID.

I have good days and with a little bit help of lipstick and maybe some tan, I might get away with my real age and someone with a kind heart might guess my age as end-40’s. But regardless of how charming one can be, there is just no bloody way I look younger than 45. My wrinkles are well deserved, I earned each one of them.

So, lets consider for a moment the kid behind the register is not able to guess my real age, due to lack of experience. “Hello” if I look older than your Mom, why do I have to wave my ID in your face, when I buy a bottle of wine?  It is obvious that I am older than 21…I am twice that age to be exact.

It bugs the shit out of me and it makes me shake my head inside and the way it looks like, I am not the only one.

I stopped at Best Buy they other day to buy a surge protector and they had covers for tablets on sale. I got frustrated as always, this is one of the stores where they play ‘hide and seek’ with their customers. You enter a specific area and you can be sure, that all the sales clerks are hiding somewhere. There is never anybody to be found, who might be knowledgeable enough to answer questions. I grabbed something that looked close enough to what I had in mind, drove home and of course it didn’t fit. So back to the store I went and stood in line at the customer service desk. Not my favorite thing to do, so I did my heavy breathing exercise and my eye-rolling workout and waited patiently (what is hard for me).

There was an older Lady in front of my, I guessed her in her 70’s maybe older. She returned a DVD, that she had bought for her Grandson’s birthday. She wanted to return it, because he didn’t like the movie…she told me all about it when we waited. The DVD was still in the original package, she had the receipt in her hand and you might think it was an easy return.

The Lady had paid in cash when she purchased the DVD, she wanted the  money back…and so it begun:

“May I see your ID please?”

“Why?…I paid cash”

“It’s store policy Mam”

“I paid in cash, you didn’t ask for my ID then”

“I have to ask for your ID Mam”

“Who says that?”

“It’s store policy Mam”

The next customer service guy was free and waved me to him and all of a sudden I decided I have all the time in the world.

This was going to be good…I could feel it, so I stayed in line behind that lady and listened to every word. Life gives me little presents now and then…and this conversation was one of them. I had a ball when it continued.

“Where is the sign with your store policy?”

“Mam, I need to see your ID, so I can give you the money back”

“I paid in cash, you didn’t want to see my ID then, so what’s the problem?”.

It went back and forth and I giggled inside. Then, without any warning she asked the question, that made me laugh out loud.

The old Lady said:

“Can you show me your ID please, so I know who wants to see mine?”

The young kid behind the counter just looked at her “I can’t show you my ID Mam..I work here”.

“I don’t show you my ID without knowing who asks”…oh it got better by the minute.

It went on for minutes -very much to my amusement- and then a manager came and he finally gave in and gave her the money back without checking her ID.

When she left she looked at me and said “I have nothing to hide, but I am tired of sharing everything with everybody”.

It made me think about it. I feel the same way, I am tired of sharing everything with everybody. Is there a new law that I have to show my ID to store clerks when I return an item? If so, I didn’t get that memo either. (There seems to be a long list of memo’s I didn’t get lately).

It goes further than that.

How often do I have to show my ID to a stranger? How often do I have to give out my phone number, just because I return a small box of nails? How many stores have my address, my email address and other informations about me, even though I am not a valued customer –meaning I don’t have one of their credit cards?

As I said at the beginning, I wish some things would be handled with common sense. Maybe its up to me to find the common sense and I need to stop giving out information, when I don’t want to. Maybe I should just say “I am tired of sharing” in the future if another store asks for my number and other information? Yes, I like that!

Privacy is a human right..but lately I feel more and more that I am losing my right. I need to fight for it, to get it back!




12 thoughts on “Show me your ID…

  1. They want your ID (but are legally NOT entitled to it and they know it) so they can add it to their database which they will sell to spammers. Your ID is worth money. No, they don’t NEED it, but the kids who work at these places are told they have to get this data or they will lose their jobs.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This was a wonderful story.. and Kudos to the Little Old Lady who stuck the store out.. I laughed out loud too when I read she asked the young sales assistant for their ID too…
    Yes we here in the UK are the same, and our phone numbers are then sold on to those who want to buy them for cold calling…
    Sending you Hugs for a lovely weekend
    Sue x


  3. I assume it happens a lot, especially at stores like Best Buy. I have to return items there all the time, mainly because I am forced to buy them without help. At least here at our store. There are always too many people and just a few sales people there. If you are lucky you grab one and if it’s a really luck day then he/she can answer a question as well. If not, you go home…try to figure out what to do next and return the item hoping you will find what you need next time…or at a different store. I am tired of showing my ID to everybody for some stupid store policies. Policies, that you can not find anywhere in the store. I don’t think the lady punished the store. In her age getting out of the house is thrilling regardless for what reason. I think she really just didn’t understand the logic behind it. You are not paranoid at all, you are just protecting your privacy.


  4. I think that the clerk was wrong to ask for ID on a cash sale and quoting “policy” is probably what they were taught and they get a lot of flak all of the time. Still, the cashier shouldn’t have made a big deal out of it.

    Though (and hear me out) I think the lady was wrong to punish the store for returning a movie that her grandson didn’t like. There was nothing wrong with the movie, it wasn’t scratched or broken in any way, but they have to pay for her mistake in buying a movie that her grandson didn’t “like”. I think that’s wrong. That’s like buying a book, reading it and then returning it because the story is awful. It’s not the bookstore’s fault that the author can’t write, and it’s not the store’s fault that the grandson didn’t like the movie she bought. Now you may say that it’s only $30 or so, but this isn’t an isolated incident. It happens all of the time. Stores lose a lot of money because of these kinds of returns — even if it’s still in the original packing, they have to sell it as a returned item. Sorry, that’s just a peeve of mine.

    That being said, I think that stores do ask for a lot personal information from us these days and they do track sales, credit card swipes, coupons, and more than you can imagine with those cards people blithely fill out every day. I get the cards, but I don’t give them the information they’re asking for. Ha! I’m just paranoid that way.


  5. Agreed! So many ways to steal our identity and I would have to say that being forced to share your personal info with everyone is a very good start to its origin. Quick story: my store credit card was outdated (to my surprise), the counter clerk wanted to issue me a new one and I agreed, her second question (aloud in front of all the customers and coworkers) ‘what is your yearly salary’, I said none of your business, if you issued me a credit card for many years past why would it be an question now?’ Her response was the same as the clerk in your post, ‘policy’. Well they lost a sale that day as I walked away.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That “store policy” quote seems to be a coverup for all kind of things these days. I can’t believe they asked you about your salary in front of everybody. Glad you walked away. I think I need to start to walk away more often as well. Tired of sharing everything…seem like a good philosophy I can live by.

      Liked by 1 person

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