8.09.2012

It's only 87 cents.

OKAY. So today, I had customers at Old Navy who were buying a pair of shorts. It was a mother and her two sons.

They walked up to me with the shorts and the mother says, "Man I hope we have enough money for these, cuz we came all the way from Kentucky."

Pause. First of all, you don't have to come up to the register wondering whether or not you have enough money. You see that the shorts are $19.50, you add 7 percent for tax, and you determine whether or not you have enough money to cover it.

And secondly, Kentucky is literally 20 minutes away. It's not that serious.

Okay. So I ring up the shorts and the total is $20.87. The son pulls two $10 bills out of his pocket and says, "We don't have the 87 cents..."

I'm waiting for the mom to pull out her extra money, but she takes the $20 from the son, hands it to me, and stares at me.

...Oh, I'm sorry, did you want me to just waive the tax? I CAN'T DO THAT. I don't have that power. I'm sorry.

The mom sees that I'm not going to give her a magical discount and sighs. The son says, "I guess we'll have to get some out of the car."

WAIT A SECOND. You have more money in the car and you're asking for me to let you have these shorts for $20? NO! Stop being so lazy and go to your car and get the money! ALSO, why didn't you just bring more of it in in the first place?

She reaches into her pocket, pulls out her ID, and mutters, "Ugh, I don't even have my card."

AGAIN, WAIT A SECOND. You have enough money on your card, but you just conveniently don't have it with you? Here's a hint: Don't come to the mall with less money than you plan to spend! How obvious can we get?

So the son asks his mom for the keys and says he'll run to the car to get the extra dollar. The mom says, "No, no, no. You go over there (by the couches) and I'll get this 87 cents."

She then proceeds to go out into the mall and beg passersby for the 87 cents. I was shocked. Flabbergasted, even. It's not like you're destitute. You have money in the car, you have money on your card, you obviously had enough gas to get here "all the way" from Kentucky, but you're literally going to beg people for change? Where is your pride?

I'm not against giving money to people who need it. But this woman didn't need it! She's begging people for change just because she doesn't want to walk back to the car!

So while she's out in the mall begging people for change, I'm ringing up my next customer. I glance over at her, because I can see her from where I'm standing, and she's staring at me. Are you trying to make me feel guilty? Because I don't. At all. Like, not even a little bit.

She finally gets some poor guy to give her a dollar and she comes in, saying (relatively loudly), "Oh my goodness, that was so embarrassing. Never in my life. I am so embarrassed. I can't believe I just had to do that."

Obviously you weren't too embarrassed, because it would have been pretty easy to walk back to your car and get the money.

Then, she freaks out that the guy didn't wait around for his 13 cents. "Well, goodness gracious. I mean, 13 cents is 13 cents, I can't believe he didn't want it." Lady. He clearly just GAVE you 87 cents, so yeah, I'm pretty sure the 13 cents isn't going to break him.

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