Decimals Schmecimals

At the package store last night (for you non-southerners, a package store is a liquor store–it has three red dots on the side and an “ABC” sign so we thirsty souls know where to go), I thought I’d help out so I told the guy at the register that his sign by the mini-bottles was wrong. I should have taken a picture before I mentioned it. Once we were in the discussion and he became annoyed, it was too late (and awkward) to whip out my camera.

Anyway, the sign said “Mini-bottles .99 cents” which cracked me up. I thought I could help and maybe share a laugh. It didn’t work.

Me: “So, I could buy 100 mini-bottles for a dollar, right?”

Him: “What?”

Me: “The sign says each mini-bottle is just point 9 9 cents. That’s less than a penny a bottle. So I can get 100 mini-bottles, give you a dollar, and you’d give me back a penny.”

Him: “No. That’s not right.”

Me, smiling: “Yeah it is. Look at the sign.”

He does. Not smiling. “No, you’re wrong.”

Me, not smiling either because don’t tell me I’m wrong: “I’m sure I am right. You should fix the sign. Take off the decimal.”

Him, wary: “How many do you want?”

Me: “None. Just trying to help.”

Impromptu mathematics lessons for the normal folk failed again.


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