Credit cards in 2018

My credit card bill is full of lines like:

GRUBHUBPUNJABPALACE GRUBHUB.COM NY
and
WHOLEFDS RVR 10214 CAMBRIDGE MA
and
TST* DARWIN S LTD. - M CAMBRIDGE MA

Why does GrubHub write its name twice and mention New York? I ordered that meal in Massachusetts. Who swallowed the rest of the letters in “Whole Foods” and why did they leave a 5-digit number? Who is “TST*”? Or “M”?

Visa and MasterCard made about $10 billion and $4 billion, respectively, in annual profit this year. You’d think that if Twitter (whose 2018 profit is in the low hundreds of millions) can afford to offer 280-character messaging, the credit card companies could cough up computer systems that can handle more text than a 19th-century telegram. Maybe even lowercase letters. Or human-readable metadata.

One can dream.

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