Candy Machine Shakedown

So I go to this huge gym not far from where I work.

The funny thing is, it’s got a fair-sized weight room, cardio room, squash courts, a pool, a boxing gym … all these posters trying to encourage good workout and fitness habits …

And two huge vending machines sitting in the main lobby, one of them stocked with protein bars … and M & Ms, Nibs, potato chips and other candies.

Some gym, hey?

This morning, as I was finishing up at the physio clinic I go to – located inside the gym – I was speaking with the receptionist when I hear this scraping sound against the floor.

I round the corner to see one of the staff members – a sales guy, no doubt, in his suit and tie – bear-hugging one of the machines, trying to shimmy and shake the thing.

At first I thought he was just doing it to get a laugh, ’cause the receptionists were all kinda snickering at him.

But then he said, “See? It’s still in there. But I got a protein bar, though.”

I watch what he’s doing, and then after about 10 seconds … 

“Are you shaking down the machine?” I ask.

“Yeah, man!” he said. “The machine totally took my money!” And he shook the machine again.

I go right up to the machine and he points to the object of his desire: a package of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, lodged in the coil.

“Dude!” I said. “This is a fitness (facility). THAT’s what you’re trying to get?”

He said, “Yeah!”

I just looked at him and said, “See? That’s a sign you’re not meant to have it.”

“Yeah,” said one of the receptionists, laughing in agreement. “Especially at 11 o’clock in the morning.”

Apparently he decided to be persistent in his quest, ’cause as I was leaving, I found out he eventually got his peanut butter cups.

The receptionist mentioned he managed to almost dislodge a package of gum.

The thought flitted across my mind to shake the machine myself …

And I immediately talked myself out of it and left as fast as I could.


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