Sunday, June 13, 2010

Math Problem

Saturday morning at Costco I chose the wrong checkout line. The guy in front of me had a flatbed cart stacked with multiple boxes of one item. I figured, he has a lot of items but they are all the same thing so it shouldn't take him very long at all to check out.


He bought all of the item that Costco had - looked like lamps in a box. Five columns of eight boxes each, each box identical, except one column only had seven boxes. 39 boxes, right? 5 columns x 8 boxes per column minus one missing box. X = (5 x 8) - 1.

Well both the checker and the box boy counted each box individually. And they had to count it several times. The first time the box boy came up with 40. The customer said there should be 39. So they counted again. I was pretty mystified by the thing but I guess maybe they didn't have a mathematical mind?

The total came out to nearly $1,300. The guy paid in cash, mostly $20 bills. So I had to stand there and wait while the checker counted out the bills, and also had to straighten them out so they all faced the same way. Now that's something I hadn't considered when doing my evaluation of which line would move the quickest - the efficiency of the means of payment. Normally I just try and avoid the lines that seem to have the most Asians because invariably they will always wind up arguing about something with the cashier, haha.

I also noticed that Costco's Blu Ray and DVD prices seem to have gotten lower. I usually don't bother looking at what they have because Amazon's prices are better but today when I checked, many were lower at Costco, or at least the same. The selection still isn't that great but at least now it is worth stopping by the aisle to see what they have.


Anonymous said...

Same thing happened to me last week. These Asians had a few boxes on a flat bed. I thought it would not be a problem but they were cigarettes. Each carton had to be removed and scanned individually. They paid over $3,000.00 in cash. All $20's. Then because of the sales level the manager had to recount and insult to injury, the cash register demanded a money drop.

Anonymous said...

It was $3,720. The cashier and box person said that usually they were really rude.