My sister and I wanted to have some old coins appraised. We took them to a local pawn shop to see if the owner, Tom, could help us out.
When we arrived, the aisles were so packed we had to squeeze past merchandise to get to the counter. Tom was outside, followed us in and bellowed “what do you want?”.
Clearly, he was a man of few words with a gruff demeanor, yet I attempted to make conversation.
There was a dog looking through the front door so I asked if it was Tom’s. He said “It better be!” When I asked her name, he groused “The dog has tools – it’s a male.”
My sister took a different tactic and complimented him on his shorts (they were quite loud sporting a Hawaiian print). Tom brusquely responded “you can buy ’em if you want.”
During this brief exchange, another customer (#2) entered the store. Tom shouted his standard greeting “What do you want?”. When customer #2 said he was just browsing, Tom barked “That ain’t gonna happen. Wait outside until I’m done here.”
Reviewing the coins, he separated those that were only worth face value repeating disdainfully “this is money”. He recorded an estimate on a post-it note for the remaining stash and told us how much they were worth. We thanked him and asked if we could have the post-it note. His reply “Nope. Not unless you plan to pay me. It’ll cost you $25.”
We left empty handed and both agreed that Tom wasn’t our guy. Surprisingly, customer #2 was still there waiting for his turn.
If customer #2 had arrived first and Tom told us to wait outside, using his own words, I would have replied “That ain’t gonna happen.”
Tom’s been in business for more than 30 years so he must be doing something right. I just didn’t see it.
May the farce be with you!