A Centless Journey

| Fort Wayne, IN, USA | At The Checkout, Money

(A customer places a book at my register to check out.)

Me: “Did you find everything alright today?”

Customer: “I did! I’ve been waiting to get this book for a long time. Wait a moment… Oh, no. I think I left my coupon at home.”

Me: “What a shame! How much was your coupon for?”

Customer: “It was a special coupon for 25 percent off any item.”

Me: “Well, you’re in luck! I happen to have an extra coupon under my register. It’s for 20 percent off any item.”

Customer: “But mine was for 25 percent. Your coupon won’t save me as much money.”

Me: “Well, ma’am, take a look at the price tag on the book. It’s only $10. With your coupon, the price would drop to $7.50, and with mine the price would be $8.00. It’s only a fifty-cent difference.”

Customer: “But my coupon would save me more money! Can you hold the book for me? I’m going to go home and get my coupon.”

Me: “Where do you live?”

(The woman gives me an address on the other side of town, probably a 40-minute round trip at least.)

Me: “Are you sure you want to drive all the way home? The time and gas alone are probably worth more than the 50 cents you’d save with your coupon. Why don’t you just use this 20 percent off right now?”

Customer: “No. My coupon would save me more money than your coupon would.”

(She leaves. An hour later, she’s back with her coupon.)

Customer: *smiling* “Look how much money I just saved!”

Incheon Further Away From The Answer, Part 4

| Cheyenne, WY, USA | Bigotry, Geography, Language & Words

(My family lives in a predominantly Caucasian town. We are half-Korean and half-Caucasian, but we were born in the US. While shopping with my sister, we are approached by an elderly lady and her younger friend.)

Elderly Customer: “Where are the cotton balls?”

Me: “I do not work for the store, but my sister and I can walk you to the display of cotton balls.”

Elderly Customer: “When did you come to the country? Your English is so good!”

(I answer with a smile, since I get asked this all the time.)

Me: “Well, actually, we were both born and raised here in this very town. Our father met our mother while he was stationed in Korea for the Air Force. We’re first-generation American on our mother’s side, but our father is from Kansas. Our family actually owns a ‘century farm’ there.”

(The elderly customer looks puzzled and her friend offers us an apology)

Customer’s Friend: “Sorry. I don’t know what is wrong with her today.”

My Sister: “It’s okay. Many people assume we aren’t American. We just correct them. It’s the nice thing to do.”

Elderly Customer: “You people are always so nice! Orientals are the nicest people, aren’t they? And you have such pretty skin and hair, too. Isn’t Chinese food the best? Those people are so nice at the restaurant, but you must know them since they’re Oriental, too!”

Customer’s Friend: *turning red* “They said they are American and they aren’t even Chinese!” *to us* “I am so sorry about all of this! Thank you for helping us find the cotton balls.”

(My sister and I smile at her and bid them both a nice day. As they walk away, the elderly customer turns back, smiles at us, and yells out with her hands open:)

Elderly Customer: “Welcome to America!”

Incheon Further Away From The Answer, Part 3
Incheon Further Away From The Answer, Part 2

Paying The Price Of Stupidity

| Australia | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Money, Theme Of The Month, Top

Customer: “What is the price of this?”

Me: *looking at price sticker* “It’s $20.”

Customer: “I thought things here were discounted?”

Me: “They are.” *I point to the price tag* “The original price was $100.”

(The customer points to the sticker with item’s model number printed on it.)

Customer: “That’s the price there.”

Me: “No. That’s the model number.”

Customer: “That’s the price, $3.85.”

Me: “No. There is no dollar sign in front of the number. It’s not the price, it’s the model number.”

Customer: “It’s clearly printed and it’s the price. You have to give it to me at that price, just as it’s written.”

Me: “Okay. You’ve got me. That’ll be $385, please.”

Customer: “What? Why? You can’t charge me that much!”

Me: “Well, you wanted the price to be just as it’s written, even though there is no dollar sign and it’s not on our normal price sticker. I need to point out that there is also no decimal point between the 3 and the 8.”

(The customer paid the $20.)

Speaking American Is A Country Diction In Terms, Part 2

| St. Louis, MO, USA | Extra Stupid, Geography, Language & Words

(I’ve lived in New Jersey all my life, but had moved to Missouri roughly two months ago. I’m managing the fitting rooms in our store when a husband and wife approach me.)

Husband: “Ma’am, do you think you can help my wife find something?”

Me: “Oh! Of course! What were you looking for?”

(The couple stares at me in shock for a few seconds.)

Husband: “Where are you from? You have a very strange accent.”

Me: “I just moved out here from Jersey.”

Wife: “That’s in Europe, right?”

Me: “Er… no. I mean New Jersey. The state.”

Husband: “Oh, so you’re from Eastern Europe?”

Me: “No, sir. The East Coast of the United States.”

Husband: “Was New Jersey one of those Soviet countries?”

Wife: “It must have been. You poor dear, living under such oppression. Welcome to America! Your English really is excellent!”

Me: “Uh… thanks. What was it you were looking for?”

Wife: “Oh, I’ll get someone else to help me. I really dislike being helped by foreigners.”

Speaking American Is A Country Diction In Terms

Deeply Fried And Deeply Mistaken

| Onley, VA, USA | Extra Stupid, Food & Drink, Health & Body

(I work in a department store. I am helping stock shelves in the grocery department.)

Customer: “Excuse me. Could you help me find Sugar-Free Oreos?”

Me: “Sure!”

(I’m not too familiar with the grocery department and it takes us a while to find them.)

Me: “Oh! Here they are!”

Customer: “Oh! Thank you! I’m so happy you found them!”

Me: “No problem. Have a great day!”

Customer: “Well, my daughter bought them here last week. I’ve been looking for them ever since.”

Me: “I’m glad I could help—”

Customer: “You see, my grandkids love it when I make deep-fried Oreos, and I wanted to get the sugar-free kind because they’re healthier to deep-fry than the regular kind.”

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