Chasing a Cardless Desireby@coha

Chasing a Cardless Desire

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Colin Hart
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I was excited. Chase finally works on Android Pay. I quickly hit accept and reentered my CSV number since I’ve already saved my credit card information into the app in anticipation of this day. Leaving the house to drop off a library book and knowing I don’t need my ID, I confidently walk out the door without my wallet. After stopping at the library, I remember I need to pick up a battery for the smoke detector that’s been beeping sporadically in my apartment for the past two days.

A perfect opportunity to use my new NFC capabilities.

A brief wander through the CVS, I find my batteries, some chapstick and wait in line. In my high off of new payment capabilities, I forgo the self-checkout deciding it’s time to get a membership card—I’ve just rid myself of one card, why not replace it with another?

The moment has arrived. I’ve filled out my information and received my four dollars savings; I pull out my phone and hold it up to the NFC reader. My phone lets out a satisfying chirp accompanied by a nice rolling vibration. It feels even better than paying with the thick plastic of Chase Sapphire.

The Verifone card reader squawks at me, “Chip card required.” The teller looks at me and suggests that they haven’t implemented Apple Pay yet mistaking my device with another. In disbelief and a hint of rising sadness, I hold my phone out to the reader in a hopes that it was merely a bug. The chirp and vibration feel like a tease as I realize before Verifone tells me that my purchase this morning is not going to come to fruition.

I push the items back toward the teller as I inform her that I don’t actually have my wallet on me.

She holds out her hand for the membership card. Because the purchase can’t complete, neither can my membership.

Defeated and rejected, I put on a brave smile and thank her.

I enter my apartment just as the smoke detector lets out a piercing beep. My lips, once tolerable, yearn for the balm they require. I put my keys down next to my wallet, resting innocently on the table.


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