Maybe I should just move into a cave

I don't know why I seem to have so much difficulty ordering food at restaurants.

I stopped at Tim Horton's on my way in to work this morning for a coffee and a muffin. Tim Horton's, for those of you who don't live in Canada, is a doughnut shop and something of a Canadian icon. (A doughnut shop, for those of you who don't live in Canada, is a donut shop.) There is approximately one franchise on every street corner and, according to the sign on the door, they are pleased to offer a non-smoking environment for their valued customers' comfort.

Anyway.

"Could I please have an extra large coffee, two cream, four sweetener, and a fruit explosion muffin?" I asked.

"Okay. That's an extra large coffee, four cream, two sweetener?" the cashier replied.

"No, two cream, four sweetener."

"Four sweetener?"

"Yes, that's how I like it."

At this point, I felt an unexplained need to apologize for the outfit I was wearing. Did my shirt even match my pants? It was the first thing I grabbed out of the closet this morning. I looked down: black pants. They go with anything. I breathed an inaudible sigh of relief.

"That will be $2.63," said the cashier.

In such situations, I employ a complex mathematical algorithm designed to minimize the PCLF of the transaction. (PCLF = Pocket Coin Load Factor.) What this means is that I want to get rid of all my smallest coins first, in order to reduce the overall weight of the change that I must carry around with me. So I counted out a toonie, three quarters, and three pennies.

"Here you go, that's $2.78," I said, handing her the coins.

Hopefully, you understand that I have given her seven coins and she will return me two coins in change: a dime and a nickel. For a net PCLF reduction of 5 coins.

(You see, had I not given her the three pennies, she would have given me a dime and two pennies in change, for a total PCLF reduction of only 1. This would be a sub-optimal outcome. Some of you are nodding vigorously in agreement. The rest of you are shaking your heads wondering who the hell cares.)

So she handed me back my $0.15 change:

A dime and five pennies.

WTF.

I don't know why I seem to have so much difficulty ordering food at restaurants.


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