Life in the (Really) Big City

It could just be that it takes me a day or so to adjust to “life in the (really) big city,” but from previous trips, I’ve come to expect a “New York moment” shortly after arriving (half a day, max).

Last time, it was paying for a Wall Street Journal ($1.50) with a $20, and getting $3.50 back. When I said I had just given him a $20, the vendor insisted I’d given him a $5, whereupon I pointed to the $20 on top of the register (“who are you going to believe, me or your own lying eyes??”).

According to my (native NY)in-laws, the mistake was mine: whenever you pay for a small item with a large(r) bill in NY, you announce, loudly, “I’m-giving-you-a-$20,” precisely to avoid this type of “misunderstanding.”

Nevertheless, I keep having “misunderstandings.”

Last night, I bought two packs of fig bars (a mainstay at the corner groceries here, and a staple of my diet when I lived here in the late ’90’s). Cost: $2.50.

This morning, I grabbed two more packs and handed the cashier $2.50.


Cashier: it’s $3
Me: They were just $2.50
Cashier: The price went up.
Me: Since last night??

If I were wearing plaid shorts and a camera, I’d understand. But I wasn’t.

I walked a block and paid $2.50.

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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