Spencer Man May Not Actually Make The Difference At Spencer State Bank

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Vol 35 Issue 04

Plane Delay Leaves Hundreds Whiny

ATLANTA—A flight-routing error at Hartsfield International Airport delayed the departure of Delta Airlines Flight 387 nearly 40 minutes, leaving over 200 travelers whiny and dozens more pissy. "This sucks," whined Janet Hoesch of Huntington Beach, CA. "What are we supposed to do, just sit here?" Free meal vouchers redeemable at any of the airport's 23 restaurants eased the whining only slightly. "Oh, great, 10 bucks worth of food," bitched Jim Heinrich, one of countless passengers left unappeased by the vouchers. "If they can't get us there on time, they should refund the whole ticket price."

Daddy Hitting Mommy Again

MURFREESBORO, TN—In the fourth such reprisal for bad behavior this week, Daddy is hitting Mommy again, under-the-bed sources reported Tuesday. The hitting, which was caused by Mommy's failure to have dinner ready on time again, also involved screaming, lamp-breaking and sobbing, as well as bad words. It is hoped that Mommy learns to behave better so that similar hitting incidents can be avoided in the future.

Bernadette Peters Comes Up Twice In One Day

COLUMBUS, OH—In an incident observers are calling "kinda weird," mid-level celebrity Bernadette Peters' name came up twice Monday in separate conversations had by Columbus resident Chris Loew. "At like noon, I forget what brought it up, but me and this guy Rich were talking about that one part in The Jerk where Steve Martin and Bernadette Peters sing that song," Loew, a 22-year-old pizza-delivery driver, told reporters. "Then, like five hours later, me and my buddy Dave were vegging out, watching Animaniacs, and he was like, 'Did you know that Bernadette Peters does the voice for Rita?' It was so freaky." Adding significantly to the freakiness, Loew said, was a narrowly averted triple-referencing of Peters at approximately 11:30 p.m.: "Me, Jeff and Josh were gonna watch [the Peters film] Silent Movie, but we wound up playing Sega instead. That would have been insane." Pop-culture statisticians estimate the odds of a single-day triple-Peters reference to be 4,750,000 to 1.

Russia's Power Shut Off

MOSCOW—Russia came one step closer to eviction Monday when the beleaguered nation's electricity was shut off due to nonpayment. "Russia has been on thin ice for months now," landlord Bob Nowicki said. "They keep saying they'll pay the bill, they'll take care of it, but then nothing happens." Russian president Boris Yeltsin has begged Nowicki to restore power, promising him that the nation will "almost definitely" have the money by the end of the week, when the World Bank is slated to vote on a $5.3 billion Russian aid package. Monday's power shut-off leaves more than 148 million Russians without heat or running water. "I hope our leaders can somehow come up with the cash to cover rent," St. Petersburg resident Olga Krupskaya said. "This would be a difficult time of year to have to find a new country." Russia has already forfeited its $44 trillion security deposit.

Hubby Rick... Ya Gotta Love Him!

First off, I'd like to thank all those Jeanketeers out there who've written to express their condolences for the passing of my dear kitty, Arthur. That includes the woman who sent me information about the grieving-cat-owner website, goodbyekitty.com. I wish I could say it comforted me, but scrolling past those dozens of kitty obituaries just bummed me out even more. But it's nice to know there are so many people out there who care.
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Just Like Everything Else!: Fox 8 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. ABC Pete's wife is still on him about building that darn shed, these kids are going to be the death of Sheila and Dave, and the hot next-door neighbor is up in EVERYBODY'S business! Sunday nights on ABC couldn't be any more familiar!

Special Coverage



Spencer Man May Not Actually Make The Difference At Spencer State Bank

SPENCER, WI—Contrary to claims made on the financial institution's complimentary pens, key chains and insulated can coolers, local resident George Pilarcik may not actually make the difference at Spencer State Bank, it was reported Monday.

Spencer State Bank, where it is suspected that George Pilarcik (left) does not make the difference.

"It said right on the free calendar, 'At Spencer State Bank, You Make The Difference!'" said Pilarcik, a 46-year-old forklift operator. "But recently, I've begun to suspect that I'm just one of almost 4,200 accountholders, and that without me, the bank would pretty much be the same."

George Pilarcik

Pilarcik said he began to question his difference-making status last Wednesday, when he received a letter from the bank informing him of a new monthly service fee for use of a checking-account ATM card.

"They promised me their special 'No Fee Guarantee,' but then they went ahead and added a $4 charge anyway," Pilarcik said. "That's when it hit me: If I truly am the one thing that distinguishes Spencer State Bank from other, inferior financial institutions, would they risk alienating me just to make an extra $4 a month?"

"For years, I believed them when they told me that Spencer was my community, and that Spencer State Bank was my bank," Pilarcik added. "But now I'm not so sure."

Spencer State Bank, which claims to offer a full range of banking services created especially with Pilarcik in mind, maintains that he is priority-one.

"If George Pilarcik isn't satisfied, we haven't done our job," said bank president Lew Hollas, responding to the charges. "Because at Spencer State Bank, we're looking out for George Pilarcik's future."

Despite Hollas' statement to the contrary, Wisconsin Bureau of Consumer Protection officials said much evidence exists supporting the claim that Pilarcik does not make the difference at the bank.

"With assets in excess of $16 million and cash reserves of nearly $700,000, Spencer State Bank is hardly dependent upon the combined $2,875.76 in Mr. Pilarcik's checking and savings accounts," Consumer Protection spokesperson Roderick Alvaro said. "Considering the fact that Pilarcik's funds represent less than .017 percent of the bank's total assets, one would be hard-pressed to argue that he makes any difference at all, much less the difference."

Though he did not file a formal complaint until last week, Pilarcik said he first suspected that he may not make the difference in November 1997, when he spent three weeks in nearby Plovis caring for his sick mother. Upon returning, instead of finding that the bank had closed in his absence, he found that everything had been business as usual.

"I walked into the bank after being gone nearly a month, and the place was in full swing," Pilarcik said. "They told me, 'At Spencer State Bank We're Working For You™.' But then who were they working for all those weeks I was away?"

"Every time I come in to deposit my paycheck," Pilarcik continued, "the tellers give me friendly service with a smile, call me by my name, and just generally make me feel like a valued customer. But lately, I've really started to wonder if they truly care about how I'm doing, if they truly want to know what I think of this crazy weather we've been having. I hope to God I'm wrong, but I fear they're only asking as part of some elaborate plan that serves their own interests."

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