Category: Math & Science

Everyone needs basic math and science skills to survive. However, these customers were definitely sleeping their way through class!

Stupidity Can Accumulate

, | ON, Canada | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Math & Science, Money

(I am working as a cashier. A customer comes up with a large order, which I ring up.)

Me: “All right, sir, your total comes to $2000.”

(The customer swipes his card and enters his account information and pin. It’s declined.)

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, your card was declined.”

Customer: “No, it wasn’t! I have lots of money in this account! Try it again!”

(I try it again. Again it’s declined.)

Me: “Did you mean to hit chequing? If you meant to use your savings account, that could be why it’s declined.”

Customer: “No, I only use my chequing account!”

Me: “Well, do you have a daily limit? Some banks have that set up, so you can only spend a certain amount each day.”

Customer: “Yes, I have a $500 daily limit.”

Me: “This transaction is for $2000, sir. That’s a lot more than $500.”

Customer: “But I haven’t used this card in three days!”

Me: “It’s a DAILY limit. It resets every day.”

(I didn’t feel like explaining that, even if it was cumulative, that still wouldn’t have equaled $2000.)

Counting And Discounting

| Sydney, NSW, Australia | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Family & Kids, Math & Science, Money, Top

(I’m a cashier at a place that sells small items of furniture, storage containers, and so on. We are having a 10% off sale. My last customer caused a huge amount of trouble due to getting angry and shouting over not understanding the difference between 10% and $10, so I’m feeling frazzled. A mother and her child, probably seven or eight, come up to my register and start unloading their items while they talk.)

Mother: *to the kid* “Now, this container was $19.95, but we bought two, so how much is that?”

Kid: “$39.90!”

Mother: “Well done! But remember, there’s 10% off today. What’s 10% of $39.90?”

Kid: “$3.99, so the real price would be… umm, $35.91?”

Mother: “That’s right! Nicely done! But now here comes the hard one, so look out! I have my membership card!”

(The child’s eyes widen. Membership cards give a further 25% discount.)

Kid: “Okay, okay, umm…”

Mother: “You can do it!”

(By this time, I’ve scanned the items and bagged them. Just as I’m about to say the total, the child beats me to it.)

Kid: “$26.93!”

Mother: “Fantastic job! I think we get to stop at the playground on the way home!”

Kid: “Yes!” *jumps up and down gleefully*

(After my last customer, a fully grown man who couldn’t understand what a percentage was, I’m literally dumbfounded. In the end, I call my manager and we give the mother a further employee discount, which her child also worked out.)

All That Glitters Is Not Gold

| Whitehorse, YT, Canada | Extra Stupid, Math & Science

Customer: “Excuse me, what are these earrings?”

Me: “Those are an amethyst stone set in rose gold.”

Customer: “Rose gold? What is that, some cheap, fake gold? Gold is expensive!”

Me: “No, no, it is gold. Gold comes in different hues – like white gold, classic yellow gold, and rose gold.”

Customer: “Oh. Well, it’s too cheap to be pure gold.”

Me: “Well, gold has to be set as an alloy. It is too soft to be in pure elemental form, so they use another metal to keep it solid.”

Customer: “What other metal is it? That’s too expensive if it’s not gold.”

Me: “It’s set over sterling silver.”

Customer: “Oh. Well, never mind then…”

Three-dom Isn’t Free

| TX, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Food & Drink, Math & Science

(I’m a cashier at the local supercenter and I’m working the afternoon shift. We have impulse candy racks at the end of each register that come in both normal and king-sized packages. Under the price tags is a strip that reads “all king-sized candy bars three for $3.” A customer approaches my register.)

Customer: “The candy is three for $3 dollars, yes?”

Me: “Yes, sir. The king-sized candy bars are all three for $3.”

(The customer grabs a few of the candy bars from the candy rack and sets them down on the conveyor belt with the rest of his items. I check them all out like normal and I notice that he had purchased two candy bars for $0.68 and one king-sized candy bar for $1. The customer gives me a strange, irritated look as I hit the total button on my keyboard.)

Customer: “The candy was three for $3. You said it was three for $3.”

Me: “Yes, sir, the king-sized candy bars are all 3 for $3. You bought two candy bars that cost $0.68 and one king-sized candy bar for $1.00.”

Customer: “But your sign says three for $3! Why is it not $3 for these candy bars!?”

Me: “Because, sir, the candy bars that you purchased amount to less than $3.00.”

(The customer went silent for a moment, though his irritated expression never left his face. He paid for his merchandise without another word and left. I stood there for a few moments trying to figure out what kind of math he was using.)

Not Exactly Heavy Math

| Roscoe, IL, USA | Extra Stupid, Food & Drink, Math & Science

(I just finish helping someone when a young man walks up to me.)

Customer: “Do you guys sell ice cubes?”

Me: “Yes. Would you like an 8-pound bag or a 16-pound bag?”

Customer: “What’s the difference?”

Me: “The 16-pound bag holds twice as much ice cubes as the 8-pound bag.”

Customer: “Is that the heavier one?”

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