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Weights and measures

Weights and measures
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  • Post #31 - June 24th, 2018, 7:28 am
    Post #31 - June 24th, 2018, 7:28 am Post #31 - June 24th, 2018, 7:28 am
    Cathy2 wrote:I encountered an under trained service person in a cheese store the other day.
    Very polite phrasing, I'd opt for something a bit more direct.

    ronnie_suburban wrote:"What is three quarters plus one half?
    Insert witty response --->Here
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #32 - June 24th, 2018, 12:23 pm
    Post #32 - June 24th, 2018, 12:23 pm Post #32 - June 24th, 2018, 12:23 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:Sad but true, Cathy and unfortunately it's a lot more common than one might expect. At my place of business we ask applicable applicants the following question during their interviews:

    "What is three quarters plus one half?

    It's surprising and depressing how many experienced people cannot answer this seemingly basic question.

    =R=


    I taught math. Fractions are hard! And transfer of knowledge - being able to answer the same question in different contexts, harder still.
    Leek

    SAVING ONE DOG may not change the world,
    but it CHANGES THE WORLD for that one dog.
    American Brittany Rescue always needs foster homes. Please think about helping that one dog. http://www.americanbrittanyrescue.org
  • Post #33 - June 24th, 2018, 12:50 pm
    Post #33 - June 24th, 2018, 12:50 pm Post #33 - June 24th, 2018, 12:50 pm
    leek wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:Sad but true, Cathy and unfortunately it's a lot more common than one might expect. At my place of business we ask applicable applicants the following question during their interviews:

    "What is three quarters plus one half?

    It's surprising and depressing how many experienced people cannot answer this seemingly basic question.

    =R=


    I taught math. Fractions are hard! And transfer of knowledge - being able to answer the same question in different contexts, harder still.

    If you think of it in terms of money, it's pretty darned easy. And this is a question we generally give to Customer Service Rep applicants, all of whom are college graduates and many of whom cannot answer it.

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #34 - June 24th, 2018, 2:45 pm
    Post #34 - June 24th, 2018, 2:45 pm Post #34 - June 24th, 2018, 2:45 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:"What is three quarters plus one half?
    Insert witty response --->Here


    Dude, that's enough weed to last me a couple of weeks at least...wait...what was the question?
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #35 - June 24th, 2018, 10:16 pm
    Post #35 - June 24th, 2018, 10:16 pm Post #35 - June 24th, 2018, 10:16 pm
    Ahh, cheese weights. At my new place of work most cutting is done with knives, old-school. You cut from the larger piece, or, a "worker" piece, never the smaller piece. This is commonplace(I would hope) everywhere. The monger typically weighs the piece before cutting, then with a wire, or a knife(I prefer wires) but, where I work prefers the badassery of freehand knife cuts, eyeballs the piece and cuts through. Measure twice, cut once. We are all experienced mongers and often get perfectly-weighted cuts. The Cheesemonger Invitational is this Saturday, and two of our mongers are competing...one of the many events, a qualifying task, is "the perfect cut." One knife, one wedge, perfect weight. We take this shit seriously.
    Being gauche rocks, stun the bourgeoisie
  • Post #36 - June 25th, 2018, 6:39 am
    Post #36 - June 25th, 2018, 6:39 am Post #36 - June 25th, 2018, 6:39 am
    Christopher Gordon wrote:One knife, one wedge, perfect weight. We take this shit seriously.
    Of that I have no doubt. Unfortunately that is not the case many (most?) places these days.

    A few years ago on one of my infrequent, and ever less frequent, visits to Whole Foods I asked a deli person for two cooked chicken thighs from the prepared foods case. She grabbed two chicken breasts instead of thighs. When I pointed it out her response was, and I sh*t you not, "how should I know, I didn't go to culinary school?"
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #37 - June 25th, 2018, 12:51 pm
    Post #37 - June 25th, 2018, 12:51 pm Post #37 - June 25th, 2018, 12:51 pm
    It's not just weights and measures.

    I remember a checkout clerk at a grocery store who had to be at least 21 years old, because she was scanning my alcohol purchase herself and asking for my birthdate. She had to type the date into the register keypad. Don't ask me why she didn't just ask to see my ID. Maybe because clearly I looked old enough. In hindsight, I wonder if it was because the company required the collection of the data in electronic form, and she just found it faster to ask for birthdates than to have to read them off IDs herself.

    I told her the complete date, starting with "October." She glared at me angrily. "The date!" she said. I said, "I told you the date. October xx, ...." Then she snapped. "THE DATE! THE NUMBER!" After a second or so of not comprehending, I suddenly realized she either didn't know off the top of her head or didn't feel it was her job to have to remember what month of the year October was. "Ten," I said. "Thank you" was her grumpy, insincere reply.
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #38 - June 25th, 2018, 2:19 pm
    Post #38 - June 25th, 2018, 2:19 pm Post #38 - June 25th, 2018, 2:19 pm
    Yeah, just go to nearly any supermarket deli and try ordering 1/3 pound of anything. Most of the time you can see the look of puzzlement on the worker's face. I half expect them to take off their shoes in order to use toes to help with the cypherin'. I guess if you can't divide what you want by 4, then you're in uncharted territory, in many cases.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #39 - June 25th, 2018, 3:43 pm
    Post #39 - June 25th, 2018, 3:43 pm Post #39 - June 25th, 2018, 3:43 pm
    I tend not to be too picky when ordering quantities at the Deli and finding that the people behind the counter really have little or no idea how to Ballpark it. Ask for 1/2 lb of meat and they slice it up an it comes up way short, so you wait for them to add a slice at a time until it's close, or it is way over, at which point you just say, "that's fine". Potato salad, cole slaw, or anything into a container is another at times comical experience. The other day I went to get some fresh mozzarella, and the counterperson added the water to the container before weighing. I stopped them, and said "no, please weigh that, then put the liquid in, or give it to me without the water", she started to protest when the supervisor stepped in and informed her I was right.

    Lastly, don't get me started on the inability of cashiers to make change without the register doing it automatically.
  • Post #40 - June 25th, 2018, 7:08 pm
    Post #40 - June 25th, 2018, 7:08 pm Post #40 - June 25th, 2018, 7:08 pm
    As someone who started working a cash register at Baskin Robbins in the laste 60's , I can assure you that it is not an easy learn without doing it regularly. There is absolutely no chance for a cashier today to learn this skill.

    I find LOTS of people in the deli, fish market etc. that are very good at correctly guessing the weight before measuring and take great pleasure in giving you exactly what you ordered. When they put 3/4 lb. +- very little and you verbally acknowledge their skill, they get a big grin on the face.

    Sure, there are plenty of novices at this game - but there are plenty of very accomplished people doing this also.

    I hope you also compliment those who are good at their job.
  • Post #41 - June 25th, 2018, 8:54 pm
    Post #41 - June 25th, 2018, 8:54 pm Post #41 - June 25th, 2018, 8:54 pm
    lougord99 wrote:I hope you also compliment those who are good at their job.


    I do.

    Until fairly recently, I would grocery shop for Mom2. The woman is a creature of habit I will never attain. Every day for lunch it was a ham sandwich with ketchup.

    Every two weeks, I would order four half-pound packages of Krakus low-sodium ham sliced medium thickness (whatever that really means). The deli department at Jewel provided packets weighing 8 to 8.5 ounces every time. I was never saddled with a few more ounces than I really wanted. I regularly complimented them on their skills to keep it close to what I ordered.

    Only once did a new deli department employee not understand what medium meant. She showed a thick slab and inquired if this was medium. She quickly corrected it.

    I really was not rude to the cheese clerk the other day. If anything, I was trying to help her get it right. She was cheerfully not sure and I was cheerfully trying to get what I wanted.

    Cheeses are made so many different ways, it is not easy to eyeball how much something weighs early in their work experience.

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #42 - June 25th, 2018, 11:05 pm
    Post #42 - June 25th, 2018, 11:05 pm Post #42 - June 25th, 2018, 11:05 pm
    Tangential story...
    Years ago I took as date to a movie, waked up to the window and asked for 2 tickets.
    The girl behind the window looked confused and after a moment looked at me and asked "What's $6.50 and $6.50?"

    First of all how do you not know how to do that math, and second are you seriously telling me that no one has ever come up to this window and said "2 please"?
  • Post #43 - June 26th, 2018, 8:11 am
    Post #43 - June 26th, 2018, 8:11 am Post #43 - June 26th, 2018, 8:11 am
    lougord99 wrote:As someone who started working a cash register at Baskin Robbins in the laste 60's , I can assure you that it is not an easy learn without doing it regularly. There is absolutely no chance for a cashier today to learn this skill.

    I find LOTS of people in the deli, fish market etc. that are very good at correctly guessing the weight before measuring and take great pleasure in giving you exactly what you ordered. When they put 3/4 lb. +- very little and you verbally acknowledge their skill, they get a big grin on the face.

    Sure, there are plenty of novices at this game - but there are plenty of very accomplished people doing this also.

    I hope you also compliment those who are good at their job.


    I always compliment a job well done, and have no issue with the ones who struggle but are at least trying. What I don't tolerate is those with attitude, where tone and body language say "I don't quite get the customer service portion of my job".

    In terms of change, sorry, it's a basic skill we all learned in first or second grade. Whether the machine calculates it or not, making change should not be a problem.
  • Post #44 - June 26th, 2018, 1:11 pm
    Post #44 - June 26th, 2018, 1:11 pm Post #44 - June 26th, 2018, 1:11 pm
    Giving change has become such a gormless interaction. Register says "give the customer back $3.27" and so the cashier does exactly that: 3 dollar bills, one quarter, and two pennies get measured out into their hand, *then* the receipt is piled on top, and, finally, the whole pile is dumped into your hand. Which demands some genuine acrobatic ability on my part to give them back the pennies, drop the quarter into my pocket, put the bills into the wallet, all the time somehow dealing with the receipt--sometimes clenched in my teeth.

    As noted above, most likely no one presently cashiering knows how to estimate change and then properly count it back to the customer in reverse.

    I started my first paper route in third grade (Southtown Economist of all things!), and you quite simply HAD to know how to make change out on your route.

    Geo
    Sooo, you like wine and are looking for something good to read? Maybe *this* will do the trick! :)
  • Post #45 - June 26th, 2018, 3:49 pm
    Post #45 - June 26th, 2018, 3:49 pm Post #45 - June 26th, 2018, 3:49 pm
    Geo wrote:Giving change has become such a gormless interaction. Geo

    Thanks for that "gormless." It made me smile on a rainy afternoon.
  • Post #46 - June 26th, 2018, 6:01 pm
    Post #46 - June 26th, 2018, 6:01 pm Post #46 - June 26th, 2018, 6:01 pm
    EvA wrote:
    Geo wrote:Giving change has become such a gormless interaction. Geo

    Thanks for that "gormless." It made me smile on a rainy afternoon.

    I had to look it up. I like it. Today's discovery!
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #47 - June 27th, 2018, 7:15 am
    Post #47 - June 27th, 2018, 7:15 am Post #47 - June 27th, 2018, 7:15 am
    Me, too.

    Fortunately, my computer and Google did the lookup for me so that I did not need to know the alphabet.
  • Post #48 - June 27th, 2018, 7:26 am
    Post #48 - June 27th, 2018, 7:26 am Post #48 - June 27th, 2018, 7:26 am
    gormless

    Great new word.
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #49 - June 27th, 2018, 8:20 am
    Post #49 - June 27th, 2018, 8:20 am Post #49 - June 27th, 2018, 8:20 am
    jimd wrote:Fortunately, my computer and Google did the lookup for me so that I did not need to know the alphabet.

    Ha ha ha.
    -Mary
  • Post #50 - June 27th, 2018, 9:04 am
    Post #50 - June 27th, 2018, 9:04 am Post #50 - June 27th, 2018, 9:04 am
    I hadn't realized, folks, that with my "gormless" I *finally* justified my Oxford education!!

    : )

    Geo
    Sooo, you like wine and are looking for something good to read? Maybe *this* will do the trick! :)
  • Post #51 - June 27th, 2018, 11:34 am
    Post #51 - June 27th, 2018, 11:34 am Post #51 - June 27th, 2018, 11:34 am
    Things like potatoes are hard to get exact since they each weigh a fair amount. If the bag comes to 9 pounds 15 ounces, what are they supposed to do, cut a slice of another potato that's used for that purpose? Ditto with apples, oranges, etc. When I briefly had a job that involved packaging things by weight we were trained to always go a little over rather than under. I'm saddened that a 10 pound bag of potatoes is ever a little under, it used to be the rule to go a little over.

    In terms of making change, I recently saw an amazing system in Japan. The bill came to the table with a barcode printed on it. The cashier scanned the barcode, the display showed the total owed, I gave the person my money (bills and coins). The bills went into an ATM-like bill counter in a stack, the coins went into sort of a basket that spun as they were counted. The change came out of a slot for the bills and a cup for the coins. No counting, no error. Pretty cool.
  • Post #52 - June 27th, 2018, 1:42 pm
    Post #52 - June 27th, 2018, 1:42 pm Post #52 - June 27th, 2018, 1:42 pm
    I was pleased when I went to the Spice House in Old Town earlier today. I needed 6 cups of an item and in spite of the fact that they don't have volumetric measuring devices in the store, the person who waited on me knew exactly what to do. She knew that this item weighs approximately 3 ounces per cup, and efficiently weighed out 18 ounces of what I needed. Then she asked if I'd like a little extra, just in case. :)

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #53 - June 27th, 2018, 2:27 pm
    Post #53 - June 27th, 2018, 2:27 pm Post #53 - June 27th, 2018, 2:27 pm
    chicagojim wrote:Things like potatoes are hard to get exact since they each weigh a fair amount. If the bag comes to 9 pounds 15 ounces, what are they supposed to do, cut a slice of another potato that's used for that purpose? Ditto with apples, oranges, etc. When I briefly had a job that involved packaging things by weight we were trained to always go a little over rather than under. I'm saddened that a 10 pound bag of potatoes is ever a little under, it used to be the rule to go a little over.

    I have since encountered a 10-pound bag weighing under nine pounds. In my initial post, it was off 8-ounces.

    When Sara Lee was still in Deerfield, I would visit their seconds store. I asked what qualified as a seconds. The clerk explained the product could be under or over the specified weight. There were probably other issues, but weight stuck in my mind.

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #54 - June 28th, 2018, 8:11 am
    Post #54 - June 28th, 2018, 8:11 am Post #54 - June 28th, 2018, 8:11 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:I was pleased when I went to the Spice House in Old Town earlier today.
    I've been dealing with the Spice House for 15+ years, always found them polite, knowledgeable and ultra professional. That I'm a Fan would be understatement.

    Do I get a cookie if I guess what you were buying? :)
    Last edited by G Wiv on June 28th, 2018, 8:23 am, edited 1 time in total.
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #55 - June 28th, 2018, 8:19 am
    Post #55 - June 28th, 2018, 8:19 am Post #55 - June 28th, 2018, 8:19 am
    chicagojim wrote:In terms of making change, I recently saw an amazing system in Japan. The bill came to the table with a barcode printed on it. The cashier scanned the barcode, the display showed the total owed, I gave the person my money (bills and coins). The bills went into an ATM-like bill counter in a stack, the coins went into sort of a basket that spun as they were counted. The change came out of a slot for the bills and a cup for the coins. No counting, no error. Pretty cool.


    In the market (and elsewhere) in Barcelona I encountered these black ATM-ish boxes at various stalls. They entered my transaction and I then slid my money in and it paid out my change. Not sure if it's an issue of not trusting workers or simply that it's a faster/more efficient checkout (person helping can move on to someone else while I collect change).
  • Post #56 - July 4th, 2018, 12:29 pm
    Post #56 - July 4th, 2018, 12:29 pm Post #56 - July 4th, 2018, 12:29 pm
    Ha! I used to buy chicken leg quarters at Valli Produce on North Ave. in Carol Stream (I think. ;) ) when they were 49¢/lb. One 10 lb bag fills my 26" Weber perfectly. I get two at the sale price. This time there was empty space on the grate. :( I weighed the second bag. With packaging (just a plastic bag) and all of the water that comes with, it weighed about 8 1/2 lb. >:(
    I contacted the store and they informed me that these come prepackaged. I pointed out that I was buying from them and held them responsible. They said they would look into it and that's the last I heard.
    I don't shop nearly as much at Valli any more. And I don't jump at the leg quarters when they go on sale. It's not enough to make me take it back but it is enough to make me avoid them in the future.
  • Post #57 - July 5th, 2018, 3:20 pm
    Post #57 - July 5th, 2018, 3:20 pm Post #57 - July 5th, 2018, 3:20 pm
    Another example today of how people don't know how to make change without the machine.......at least this person was trying.

    I checked out at a Mariano's, and the total was $14.95. I handed the cashier a $20 bill, and she asked me if I had a nickel. I asked her why she needed a nickel, to which she replied, "to make the change even". I told her No, the change would be $5.10 instead of $5.05, so unless I had a deep need for a dime instead of a nickel in my pocket, there was no difference. I said if the total was $15.05 then her need for a nickel for "even change" would be correct. As I said, at least she was trying.........or maybe sensed that I needed that dime instead of a nickel......
  • Post #58 - July 5th, 2018, 3:47 pm
    Post #58 - July 5th, 2018, 3:47 pm Post #58 - July 5th, 2018, 3:47 pm
    Most people pay now with their credit/debit card, and so most cashiers don't have to deal with change. If it is a small purchase like under $5, I will usually pay in cash, and if I have the correct change, I will hand over the change too. I am really good with numbers, and there are many times when I pay with cash, where I have to tell the cashier how much money I have coming back.

    I had an instance a few weeks ago, where I deposited a check in my checking account, and when the teller handed me back the slip, I realized that she had added one zero too many to my account. I pointed out to her that I could use the money, but that she made a huge mistake. When she grabbed the check off the top of the pile she realized what she did, and made a correction to my account. I am sure they would have figured out sooner rather than later that she screwed up.
  • Post #59 - July 6th, 2018, 12:23 pm
    Post #59 - July 6th, 2018, 12:23 pm Post #59 - July 6th, 2018, 12:23 pm
    Back in the olden days when I was trading on the floor of the cboe, everything traded in multiples of sixteenths (1/2, 1/4, 3/8, 13/16 etc). Every trader and most clerks could do basic math using these fractions instantly. Occasionally some non-trade related discussion would come up using different fractions (1/3, 1/6, 1/12) or decimals or percentages, and most people would be befuddled by it. I remember 2 guys getting into an argument over whether 1/3 or 3/8 was larger. I think it is all about what you use regularly, not what you were taught 20 years before.

    -Will

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