Vending Machine Jubilation

(it’s the little things that matter)

After a particularly sodden and freezing hour-and-a-half of football at Powerleague which, despite being thoroughly enjoyable, did render my hands totally numb and the book I left in my coat pocket damp around the edges (because lockers are expensive, yeah?), I went to the site’s vending machines in search of comfort food and Diabetes-relieving blood-sugar boosting.

And what I found was this and so much more.

The machines operate an ‘exact change only’ policy, so playing a quid for a 75p snack will result in 25p being left in the machine; you can’t get this money out, and it just stays in the machine forever, so you can either buy something worth 25p or walk away. The absence of 25p-priced snacks makes the latter the more popular potion.

And so when I walked up to the vending machine, the 25p of a previous customer was already there in the little ‘credit’ window, meaning I only had to give 5o of my own pence to have the necessary credit to buy a 75p Galaxy bar. Not only did this save me a bit of money, but the grand total of my own change was £1.25, which is 25p short of buying two snacks, as everything in the machine was priced at 75p. With the additional 25p in the machine, my budget new stretched to the £1.50 necessary for both a Galaxy and a Mars bar, thus doubling the amount os space-themed chocolate I was about to shove into my face.

I assume that the 25p left in the machine was done so unintentionally, as such a mistake results in a net economic loss, which people are all-too wary about these days, but if it was intended, I feel touched by God.

Perhaps some kind individual only had a quid coin, and rather than save it for a change-giving purchase, they used it here, knowing that they would help reduce the price of a snack for the next customer by a third and, in my specific case, allowing me to buy a second item, reducing the possibility of a post-exercise blood sugar low to almost zero.

It’s more than likely that the leaver of this 25p wasn’t even aware that they did it – they might have just chucked money into the machine, bought what they needed to and sodded off – perhaps reflecting a change in our society, that we are all becoming more caring and considerate of others, in an unconscious way. A combination of years of a crappy economy, political indecision with the coalition and, specifically for Powerleague, sub-standard performances from British teams in European and International football on every scale, might have given us all a greater appreciation of what we do have, even if it’s just a vending machine of Galaxy bars.

Or maybe I just got lucky with a 25p in a vending machine. Who’s to say?


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