Simple Math

My sixth grade math teacher, Mrs. Bartlett, was the most spectacular teacher ever! She was the kind of teacher that would stop in the middle of a lesson and dispense life lessons related to math.  During one particular lesson, she was on the lesson of counting money.  She stopped to share this piece of advice to us pre-teens: Whenever you ask to break a bill, ALWAYS count your money before you walk away. Otherwise, they won’t believe you when you tell them you didn’t receive the full amount.”

Well, wouldn’t you know that it happened to me the following weekend that I asked to break a $20 bill.  The middle-aged man went into the back room, which I thought was weird, and came back and just handed me the money. He didn’t bother to count it out in front of me. So I took Mrs. Bartlett’s advice, and counted the money right there in front of him. And of course, the guy shorted me a dollar. I told the guy, and he begrudgingly gave me the dollar.

Today (September 18th), I experienced that at a low-end, Family Dollar-type, anything and everything store. I had scouted the store a few days before when an Aussie told me that was the place to get stuff on the cheap. I had been eyeing a rice cooker for all our cooking needs. Prof encouraged me to get it, and so I ventured off with Linus.

At the check out, the long wavy red-haired cashier pretended to ignore me as I waited behind the other customer.  She scanned the items, and told me the total amount in English. I handed a large Euro bill, and she placed all but 5 cents in my hand. I asked her about the 5 cents. She then slides the 5 cent coin nearby the register and yells across the store, “5 cents, Corey!” Then something in Greek. “5 cents,” she restated as she gave her final wave of utter disgust with her hands in the air.  If Jack McBrayer on “30 Rock” played my part in this scene, he would just laugh and say, “Oh, that’s so funny,” walk out of store and end scene.

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(Source: Google Images)

I don’t think I would have noticed as much if she slid the money across the counter and not bothered to place the money in my hand. But watching her input the amount into the register for the correct change, then seeing her purposely moving the money to the counter and to my hands was a bit obvious.

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