People Who Can’t Make Change

Twice today I was confronted with a person who works in retail that couldn’t make change.  I tried to make it easier for them, and give them an amount that would necessitate fewer bills and coins, but all I succeeded in doing was confusing them

First, at a restaurant, the bill came to $18.  I only had $10 bills, so I gave him 2 of them, but I also included $3 in coins.  Thus, making it easy for him to give me $5 back.  You would have thought I asked him to calculate the national debt because of the confused look he gave me when I gave him the $3.  He stared at me for a second, having already rung up $20 and been told by his cash register that he needed to give me $2.  I had to physically explain to him how to make change for $23.  It took a good minute before he finally understood and gave me my $5.

Then, after 2 very good movies, I caught a taxi home.  The ride came to $16.50.  After being told by the driver that he only takes cash (many taxis in Singapore will let you pay with credit or ATM cards), I decided to make life easier for him as well.  I only had a $50 bill.  I gave him (once again including coins to make it easier) $52, making the change amount $35.50.  Any 2nd grader can tell you that (although with the new common core they’d have to draw out number lines and find the answer in the most convoluted way possible).  When I gave it to him, the response was, “no, it’s $16.50.”  “I know, this way you don’t have to give me too many bills,” I said.  Once again…..the desperate look of confusion is what I saw.  He started counting out coins.  “No, just give me 3 tens, a five and 50 cents,” I said.  You would have thought I was speaking Swiss German to the guy, he had no idea what I was telling him.  Finally, I gave up, took back the $2 coins and let him make change for the $50.  Now I’m stuck with more coins, whereas I was trying to get rid of them in the first place.

It irks me to no end when people who deal with money on a daily basis are complete math morons!  This is basic math, people, what the hell are you doing working with money if you can’t do basic math?!?!  I think employers need to screen their applicant a lot more closely than they are, because they’re probably losing money with the pool of idiots they’ve hired!


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