So I had my wallet stolen at the Eaton Centre yesterday. Fun times. It happened within the space of less than twenty minutes, so let's have a big round of applause for the thief or thieves. Well done.
Here's what happened:
I bought a pair of work-pants at Old Navy (for $20 marked down from $40 - score!) and paid for them with my debit card. As I was zipping my wallet back into my backpack, some people got in line behind me, and instead of doing a quick and half-assed zip-up job, as I often do when I feel like I'm holding up the line, I moved to an empty cash register to make sure everything was stowed away securely.
I am positive somebody was watching me at this point.
I left the store, and browsed very quickly at RW, Bentley's (I was looking for a purse, how ironic!), Smart Set, and Reitman, before deciding to refuel with a coffee at Starbucks.
I got into line for my coffee, and thought to myself, "Hmmm, let's just check out the cash situation, see if I have any small bills to pay for this coffee" (I know, what was I thinking - small bills at Starbucks? Please!).
I shrugged my backpack off, went to unzip the compartment where I keep my wallet - and was greeted with the gaping, unzipped maw of a pocket containing three mini-Kleenex packs, a digital camera, a gift card for "Milestone's Restaurant", a roll of film, an elastic for my hair, thirteen cents in change, and no wallet.
In retrospect, I'm glad I checked for my wallet before I ordered the coffee, because it would have been terribly embarassing to have discovered its absence after the coffee had been served. "Oh, I'm sorry, I can't pay for this - SOME FUCKHEAD JUST STOLE MY WALLET."
And so to the Information Desk on the main floor of the Eaton Centre, where a very nice clerk gave me all the phone numbers I would need to cancel my credit card (I only use and carry the one, and I hadn't used it in over two months), and my three client card for the two banks I use, one of them for The Bank (i.e. my employer) and two for the Royal Bank (RBC), with whom I will no longer be doing business, for the following reasons:
a) every time I inquired about getting one card for the two accounts so I wouldn't have to carry around two cards, they told me that this would only be possible if I closed my RBC Gold Savings Account or whatever the hell it's called, and this would be bad because RBC phased that type of account out in the early 90s and I would be stupid to give it up because it was better than the new savings account they would have to open for me. When the bank's employees are telling you that the product they're offering you is inferior to the product it replaces, it's time to start banking somewhere else.
b) when I called the Personal Banking people yesterday, in tears, to say that my wallet had been stolen and that I wanted to cancel my two client cards, the Customer Service Representative told me that this wouldn't be necessary because they were both password protected. What?!?!? I don't fucking care - I want to cancel the cards, and when a client says, "I want to cancel my cards because my wallet has been stolen", the appropriate reaction from the Customer Service Representative goes something like this: "Oh, I'm so sorry. Are you OK? Let me take care of this for you. Your new cards will be delivered in five business days."
c) I work for the competition, and I can bank for free with them.
Anyway. So the joyful tasks of cancelling credit cards and bank cards and talking to Toronto Eaton Centre security and the Toronto Police accomplished, I was free to leave. Fortunately, Phabulous Phil was able to come and get me, and took me out for nachos and vodka-based drinks, so all was not lost.
I hope the thieves had a blast with $115 of my honestly-earned money, my cancelled MasterCard, my expired Bloor Cinema membership, my Toronto Public Library card, my FIS copy card, my parents' business cards, my OHIP card, and my Special Libraries Association membership. Bravo.