Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Another Crazy Thing We Do

The guy who works at the skills workshop gets a paycheck once a month. The check is deposited directly into his bank account and he gets the stub. You can probably guess that he does not understand that this is not an actual check. However, he gets an allowance of $2 a day (one dollar after he takes his meds, another after he showers.) And he gets a whopping $5 on Friday. So although he wanted to go to the bank to cash his check, he could usually be redirected about it until he forgot.

And I should have just left well enough alone. But no. I had to go make a teaching opportunity out of this. So I decided that he should continue to get his daily allowances, but that once a month, when he got his paycheck, he could actually go to the bank and cash a check for an additional five dollars. I was thinking that doing this would help him to correlate working with earning money.

I was wrong. All this did was give him something else to bug us about. And not just when he has a paycheck in his hand. It's anytime we drive by a bank. "Go cash my chessh," he says. "Sorry you don't have a check," we reply. Then he gets upset and slaps his leg and closes his eyes like he's thinking about things he could do to get his way. So now, we not only can't drive by Sonics or McDonalds, we also have to do our best to avoid any banks. Not an easy task people.

So all this to say that when we tried to do a switcheroo at the bank and let him give his direct deposit slip to the bank tellers while I slid them an actual check from his account, I lost a lot of confidence in the brain capacity of the tellers. They totally did NOT understand that they were simply to throw away the paper he had given them and cash the check. Even he was catching on that something was going on. So we had to come up with a plan B. This is where crazy comes in.

So now what we do is this. I go cash a five dollar check when he is not with me. Then when he is, we drive up to the ATM (the nice thing about this is that we can use any bank, not just one he has an account with). We stop in front of the machine and I say, to nobody of course - it's a machine - "Good afternoon, we'd like to cash this check." Then he hands me his paystub, I drop it in the side pocket of the door and we wait. A couple minutes later, I reach out to the machine, say, "Thank you. You have a good afternoon too," hand him five dollars and we drive away.

I know there is a camera built into those things and I really hope they don't have someone who watches them randomly. But if they do, it may just be the highlight of their day when they see us coming.