Paris Sandwich Calls me a Terrorist

It all starts this Saturday noon, with my craving for some grilled pork Banh-Mi from one of my favorite (not any more) vietnamese sandwich shops Paris Sandwich.

I go into Paris Sandwich at 113 Mott St. (Betn. Hester and Canal) and order a sandwich and other stuff for a takeaway. My total comes to 14$. I give my card to the cashier and she tells me there is a minimum of $15 dollars for using a card. Thats a first for me from this store, which I have been to in the past.

Having a minimum is against the merchant policy laid out by Mastercard and Visa and I tell the cashier the same. She does not understand what I say, so I ask to speak to the manager. She goes to call the manager and comes back and says something to the extent that manager says sorry. I ask to speak to the manager at which time a lady comes out and asks me what the problem is. I tell her that it is unfair of her establishment to have a minimum policy on credit card transactions. While I am telling her this, the real manager, a guy in his early 30’s walks up and tells me to either follow the policy or leave.

Well, I tell him that I am leaving and that it still does not make his policy correct. I also inform him that I will file a complaint with MC and VISA via their online link. And I walk out of the store.


Standing on the sidewalk, I am noting the address of the shop and other details, and he walks out of the store and starts screaming at me. He comes inches away from me and threatens to hit me. I cannot believe what is going on and dont know whether to laugh or call 911. I clearly tell him to back off and his female companion pulls him away. He goes on ranting about how he hates people like me and tells me not to take pictures of his shop. I remind him that I am on a public street and can take pictures of the outside of his shop. This infuriates him even more.

At this point I am done with this asshole and turn away to go back to my bike. He shouts out to me…."fuck off you faggot". I stopped and went back and asked him if he was talking to me. He says "Yes you faggot". I simply ask him if he had seen himself in a mirror lately. This really infuriates him as a couple of other tourists on the road have been observing this and start laughing. As I turn away again, he shouts out at me "You terrorist, go back to your country".

Yes, these were his exact words. At that point I decided enough was enough, and called 911. The cops showed up after a short while and listened to both sides of our stories. They did give him a stern warning.

Funnily this incident did not thoroughly piss me off as such incidents usually do. And for once I was being way more calm than I am in such situations.

However its shocking that a Chinese guy calls me, an Indian guy, a terrorist in this one of the most immigrant friendly cities of the world.

For sure, I will never go to Paris Sandwich, and I hope that my complaint to Mastercard and the Better Business Bureau get him some grief.

9 Comments so far

  1. binaryzero on October 13th, 2008 @ 5:39 pm

    You did good :)

  2. dhaval mehta (dhaval) on October 15th, 2008 @ 9:13 am

    But did they really call you a terrorist? It’s not anywhere in your post body…

  3. arZan (arzan) on October 15th, 2008 @ 9:38 am


    As I turn away again, he shouts out at me "You terrorist, go back to your country".

    This is at the end of the 6th paragraph. Am surprised you missed it and found that as the only noteworthy thing to comment on.

  4. binaryzero on October 15th, 2008 @ 9:55 am

    yeah , sometime when i am in US – its more scary. People are rude and shouting on you. i had a simillar incident in Philadelphia downtown – but not to mention, some people are quite good and helpful.

  5. abhijat01 on October 21st, 2008 @ 3:06 pm

    In the U.S. many many places have requirements on the minimun of using the credit cards. I am assuming you are a new immigrant so you don’t know, some places that I’ve been to even charge me 4% of the total just using the credit card. I am the same nationality as you are and I don’t think that him calling you terrorist is right but I personaly think you are very ignorant to even have time to call the cops, why didn’t you just go to the ATM or just simply cancel the order?? I don’t get it??

    I recently went to a Pakastanian Restaurant to order take out, they have a minimun of $10 to use the card…may be you should start going around and confront these places since you are so passionate about it

  6. arZan (arzan) on October 21st, 2008 @ 3:25 pm


    Stop being a smart ass ! I’ve lived here over 10 years in NYC and that accounts for about 1/3rd of my life.

    As regards minimum payments….yes a lot of establishments have that policy but that does not make it right. Its against the rules that merchants have with MC and VISA. The reason some places charge 4% is because MC and VISA charge the merchant that amount per transaction. Learn the facts before opening your mouth.

    And how the f$%^ am I being ignorant when I call the cops when someone calls me a terrorist. Its people like you who would twiddle their pinky, suck their thumb and look the other way. Any person with self-respect would stand up. I guess that’s a foreign concept to you.

    In your blind haste…you missed reading that I did cancel my order and walk out of the store. Everything else that happened was afterwards.

    And it’s Pakistani….not Pakistanian…..are you sure you are Indian….most of them are not stupid jerks like you who cant even pronounce/spell correctly.

  7. tommmy217 on October 21st, 2008 @ 5:12 pm

    OMG!!! sorry to hear that but you kinda had it coming to you man, min on credit card is fine as long as they have a sign posted for the consumer. alot of businesses and restaurants do that. seems like the situation was escalated to something else then just the credit card issue. Its really not a big deal. some people just have issues

  8. Kathleen (kathleen) on October 28th, 2008 @ 6:16 pm

    abhijat01 and tommmy217, if those are indeed your real names, you are incorrect that the policies requiring a minimum purchase for acceptance of a credit card are "fine". According to Mastercard and Visa, merchants are not permitted to require a minimum purchase amount when using Visa or Mastercard.

    Now that that’s out of the way, to say that someone had it coming to be called a terrorist for merely standing up for his rights as a consumer is quite a leap. Many merchants attempt to impose a minimum purchase amount for card usage and most get away with it. Consumers may choose to discontinue doing business with that establishment and tell them they are going to file a complaint with Visa and Mastercard, which is well within their rights. For the merchant to become hostile and begin slinging epithets and threatening to hit the customer is completely wrong and should be reported.

    Arzan, you did the right thing.

  9. wkhang on November 4th, 2008 @ 6:48 am

    @ Arzan,

    You did the right thing, (you tried to ignored him twice.

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