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Posted by on Feb 17, 2024 in Retirement Humour |

Living Retired –‘ATM aka A Torture On Mankind’

Living Retired –‘ATM aka A Torture On Mankind’

Living Retired — ‘ATM aka: A Torture On Mankind’

By Gary Chalk.

Drive-thru automated teller machines (ATM’s) are similar to the traffic circles we maneuver: they work until you encounter someone who doesn’t know what they are doing. This is what happened to me the other day…

I pulled up to a bank drive-thru window. Two cars were ahead of me. The driver directly in front was beside himself waiting for the person in the car at the ATM window who was doing a year’s worth of personal banking. Every so often her arm slowly appeared from the car window and she tapped the screen. E-v-e-n-t-u-a-l-l-y, she followed the prompt button and stuffed a bank card, a cheque, or some cash in the slot. In between she sat relaxed in the car. Not a care in the world.


I sent a text message to Jan: “I am STILL in the bank drive-thru lane.” (I tried to find the emoji for ‘*&^*&’ but the closest is a round face with an upside-down smile and a tear rolling down its face.)

That’s it, I am outta here. Damn. A car has pulled up behind; no escaping.

All I wanted to do was pull up to the machine, insert my bank card and get my cash. Easy peezy! Hold on ‘Mr. You’re Richer Than You Think.’

I am in luck! The car in front of me pulled ahead to the ATM window. Oops, he was diving so slow he crept past and missed the window! So, now he slowly backed up. Then forward. Back and forth! Just my luck. I was trapped behind ‘Mr. Gotta Be Exact’ who needed his drivers window smack dab beside the ATM machine. Grrr…

What’s that? ‘Mr. Gotta Be Exact’ appeared to be sorting through paperwork to find the cheque he wanted to deposit. ‘Mr. Gotta Be Exact’ was in some sort of ‘ATM fog,’ not realizing other customers were waiting.

I hope he doesn’t have a cellphone. Oh my gosh he is reaching for it.

FINALLY! ‘Mr. Gotta Be Exact’ leaned out to insert his bank card. Oh no! Now, he undoes his seatbelt, and leans out the car door because his car is too far from the screen!

CAN THIS GET ANY WORSE!!! Apparently so…

‘Mr. Gotta Be Exact’ inserts his bank card. Now, he re-inserts it the other way up. He waits, his fingers contemplating their next move. I can tell he can’t remember his PIN. He re-enters multiple PIN’s!

Success! He enters the amount of cash he wants. Then, removes the cash and the receipt. HURRAY! It is almost my turn…

Next, he counts his cash, not once, but twice! The car window slowly glides closed, and he moves forward. I was anxious by now, so I pulled my Jeep up to ATM window. WHOA!!…

‘Mr. Gotta Be Exact’ throws his vehicle in reverse and backs up to the cash machine: he forgot his bank card!

AT LAST! It is my turn…

I roll down my window and lean over to slide in my bank card. A message flashes on the screen ‘SORRY THIS ATM IS OUT OF SERVICE.’


 Ring. Ring.

“Gary, what on earth is taking you so long? You said an hour ago you were at the ATM!”


The driver in the car behind me — ‘Mr. Even More Inpatient Than Me’ — is waving his finger at me. He shouts, “Come on. Let’s go! You think I have all day!”


Living Retired is written by humour columnist Gary Chalk.


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Below you can listen to last Fridays Living Retired: The Radio Edition on The Mike Farwell Show. Mike and I had some laughs talking about silly inventions that make you scratch to your head! Enjoy.