Cash Might Be King, but They Don’t Care現金或許是老大 店家可不甩

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2018/01/26 第201期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份

紐時周報精選 Cash Might Be King, but They Don’t Care現金或許是老大 店家可不甩
The Latest in Apartment Technology: Fridge Cams and Robotic Valets最新公寓科技:冰箱攝影機、機器佣人


Cash Might Be King, but They Don’t Care現金或許是老大 店家可不甩
文/Andy Newman

The other day at Dig Inn, a just-opened lunch spot on Broadway and 38th Street in Midtown Manhattan, Shania Bryant committed a consumer faux pas. She placed her order for chicken and brown rice and yams, and when she got to the register, she held out a $50 bill.

“Sorry,” the cashier told her. “We don’t take cash.” Not, “We don’t take $50s.” No cash. Period.

“What?” Bryant asked.

幾天前,在紐約曼哈坦中城百老匯大道與第38街交口剛開幕的午餐餐廳Dig Inn內,仙妮亞.布萊恩犯了個消費者不太得體的錯。她點了雞肉、糙米飯和山藥,到櫃檯結帳時,掏出張50元美鈔。



The cashier patiently explained. Credit and debit cards were fine, as was the easy-to-download Dig Inn phone app. But the almighty dollar was powerless.

“I’ve never experienced that before,” said Bryant, 20, an assistant to a designer. “I guess we’re in new times.”

收銀員耐心地解釋,信用卡和簽帳金融卡都可以使用,容易下載的Dig Inn手機應用程式也行,但萬能的美元則無能為力。


Indeed. Cashless businesses were once an isolated phenomenon, but now, similarly jarring experiences can be had across the street at Sweetgreen, or two blocks up at Two Forks, or next door to Two Forks at Dos Toros, or over on 41st Street at Bluestone Lane coffee. In Midtown and some other neighborhoods across New York City, cashless is fast on its way to becoming normal.

But it is not quite normal yet. So the cashier at Dig Inn cut Bryant a break.

“Just this one time, we’ll give it to you on the house,” she said, handing over the bag. “But just so you know, in the future.”

的確如此。店家的無現金交易曾經是孤立的特別現象,但如今在對街的沙拉店Sweetgreen,往前方兩個街區的Two Forks餐廳,Two Forks隔壁的墨西哥餐廳Dos Toros,甚或是第41街的Bluestone Lane咖啡店內,都可能會有類似的不愉快經驗。在紐約市中城和市內一些其他區域,無現金交易正快速普及,往成為常態之路邁進。

然而由於還沒有完全成為常態,Dig Inn的收銀員給布萊恩行了個方便。


Ah, the future. In the future, when dollar bills are found only in museum display cases, we will look back on this moment of transition and confusion with the same head-shaking smile with which we regard customs on the Isle of Yap in Micronesia, where giant stone discs are still accepted as payment for particularly big-ticket items.

Some people already live in this cashless future. They find nothing strange about paying for a pack of gum with a swipe of a card. If you are one of these people and you are still somehow reading this article, you may be thinking, “What on earth is the big deal?”



At Two Forks on 40th Street, where the lunch offerings have cheery names like Squash Goals, Kristin Junco, a 34-year-old auditor for the state Education Department, said she had not used cash for about a week and much prefers a cashless establishment to its opposite. “We travel a lot for work,” she said, gesturing to a colleague, “and if they don’t take credit cards that makes things difficult.”

On the other side are those who were raised to equate credit-card spending with taking on debt — something to be avoided whenever possible, and reserved in any case for major expenditures. Those people do things like grab a $5 bill from their purse and run down from their office to the place on the corner thinking that they can buy a snack with it. They will catch on eventually.

在第40街的Two Forks餐廳,午餐提供的食物有著Squash Goals之類令人愉快的名字,34歲的州教育廳審計員克里斯汀.榮科表示,她大概有一周沒用現金了,而且更喜歡與現金制度相對的無現金環境。她指著一位同事說:「我們經常出差。如果他們不收信用卡會比較麻煩。」




隨著網路、行動通訊技術之發展,電子支付近年成為一種新的交易型態且取代現金比率不斷升高, 翻轉「現金為王」局面,而除了一般商家外,現在就連政府部門、醫院甚至是夜市都搭上這波無現金交易的潮流。

文中首段單字faux pas是個法文外來語,英語直譯是「false step」,意指「失禮、不得體」之意,常用來指社交禮儀中舉止不當或失禮行為,而要注意的是,此字為可數名詞,單複數皆寫作faux pas,而當我們形容某人穿著打扮不得體也會用到此法文外來語,亦即fashion faux pas。此外,文中倒數第二段的cashless establishment則譯為「無現金環境」,其中establishment代表的是「體制」的意思。

至於on the house為一美式俚語,一般用於餐廳場合,代表「由店家請客、免費招待」之意,而big-ticket item則意指昂貴商品。


The Latest in Apartment Technology: Fridge Cams and Robotic Valets最新公寓科技:冰箱攝影機、機器佣人
文/C. J. Hughes

The latest in technology for apartments encourages residents not to lift a finger, except maybe to touch their phones.

Developers are certain that buyers want gadgets that could, say, help shuffle boxes of books to storage areas, or allow a peek inside the refrigerator when they’re at the grocery store and can’t remember if they need milk.



These digital amenities, which are controlled by voice commands and smartphone apps and use robots, are turning up across the New York area in condos, co-ops and rentals, even if users may have to contend with a few glitches. Users may also have to pay a premium.

Yet, to not plug in, developers say, would be to lose out.



“It’s not about the future,” said Elena Ashkinazy, a manager at Time Equities, the developer listing a two-bedroom co-op on the Upper East Side called the “smart apart” for its futuristic features. This apartment includes a fridge that has three cameras inside that are accessible remotely. “The time is here,” Ashkinazy said, “and we have to be up-to-date.”


This latest crop of cutting-edge features includes an all-in-one furniture system designed to save space by expanding or contracting at the flick of a switch. It is available in rental projects in New Jersey and Manhattan, including at the Riverbend District, a mixed-use complex under construction in Harrison, New Jersey, from DeBartolo Development and Advance Realty. Renters in the first 286-unit phase of the project, called Steel Works, are about to be given the option of leasing a telescoping bed-and-dresser system designed by Ori Systems, a startup.


At night, renters can slide out a hidden bed, by manually pressing a switch; tapping their phones; or through voice-assistant software, which in Steel Works’ case means via Echo Dot. This puck-size device comes with all units.

In the morning, the bed can retract inside the Ori unit, which is plugged into a wall and mounted on a track, allowing the entire unit to be moved to create a larger living space for entertaining. The unit, lined with hanging rods and drawers, is made of poplar plywood and also has a surface that can be extended for a desk.






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