smartphone scan

My store uses coupons, and sometimes it makes a fuckton of them avaliable online. Not everyone uses them, but if the line’s slow and I see that someone’s paying full price when they don’t need to, I’ll usually help them out by telling them they can load coupons on their smartphone while i scan their items.

So, this lady comes through my line and immediately starts complaining that she doesn’t have more discounts on her purchase (which was about $11 total btw). I tell her is against our policy to keep physical copies of coupons at the register, but there may be other ways she could get some.

Going by my usual script, I ask her if she has a smartphone, and this is my big mistake. She sneered viciously, as if I’d asked if she’d like to stop at the puppy-kicking booth on her way out of the store. “I don’t have a smartphone!,” she spat. “Neither does anybody in my family. I don’t want Obama listening in on me, finding out what I eat and drink and shit!”

Mind you, this was approximately a week ago, in April, nearly three months since Obama’s been retired. Seeing her get agitated about it, i forced a smile and a “sorry, nevermind”. She continued ranting until i finished ringing her up.

The funniest part was that she was clearly directing some of that paranoia and defiance towards me, and I’m quite sure she thought I was part of Obama’s secret team of spies, disguised as minimum wage employees, tempting unsuspecting citizens into getting bugged smartphones with the promise of sweet 20% off coupons… how else can we discover the no doubt fascinating and important secrets of this woman’s thrilling life… sorry Barack, she’s too smart for us… anyway…

Finally i told her her total. She stuck her card in and followed the prompts until it asked her to sign for her purchase and she started yelling at me. “OH NO. That is NOT how my card works! I don’t have to sign for a purchase under $25!” I explained that actually, that’s how our card readers work now. The old slide cards don’t need a signature under $25, but the new chip cards need either a PIN or a signature for any amount. “Well maybe that’s some fancy [store name] rule, but I know MY card doesn’t work like that! I just used it another place and it didn’t make me sign!” Again, I explained that that’s how our credit card machines work and that sometimes other companies may have different machines, but there’s no way of getting around how they work. She was yelling and i expected to need to involve a manager, but then suddenly she signed it while still yelling about how she refused to sign it. Overall, a strange and angry interaction.

Building an art supply empire on a budget.

Art supplies, the good ones, generally aren’t cheap. Here are a few ways to build your art supply empire without going broke.

Buy ahead, when things are on sale, even if you’re not going to use the supplies on your current project. Its okay if your new toys might collect dust for a bit. If you think its something you might use in the future, why not grab it on sale instead of paying double or triple the price when you actually need it?

Check for coupons on the stores site. Almost every major art supply chain has a weekly 40-50% off coupon. Most of them will even let you use your smartphone to scan it in.

Even if you have a coupon, price check with your smartphone before you buy it. Major art stores like Michaels and joanns will inflate their prices to double or triple the price of online stores. Keep the amazon and Google shopper apps on you phone to compare prices and get the best deals.

Let people know you’re into art and keep an online wish list. Art supplies are an easy and great gift idea. When people ask what you want for a holiday or birthday, let them know you have an online wish list.

Exchange art for art supplies. When I draw for friends and family, instead of charging them a straight fee, I direct them to an online art supply list I have. I tell them what supplies I will need for their drawing and let them purchase the supplies. This is generally cheaper than my flat hourly fee and I get extra supply out of it.

Check Craig’s list for people who art selling their unused art tools. People take up hobbies all the time and then decide to give them up. They over buy supplies and when they’ve decided its just not their cup of tea, they sell them off for cheap.

Read reviews that compare art supplies. You don’t always need top of the line supplies, sometimes the cheap stuff is just as good. Look up reviews for comparison of products. 

Accept hand-me-downs. I’ve had a lot of older friends of the family who are looking to get rid of their old art stuff. Even if its something I never use, I gladly accept when they offer me free supplies. From calligraphy inks to scrapbooking materials, I’ve always found something I might be interested in using. The stuff I don’t use I donate to another artist in need.

The best brands are not always the best products. Ever heard of an art sponge? They’re great but you can buy the same product from anywhere, it’s called a make-up sponge and it’s a 3rd of the price. Been eyeing that art bin that costs $40+? A $5 tackle box will be just as good. A lot of art products are just other cheaper products that are renamed and advertised as being “art quality” at 3 or 4 times the price. You don’t always need that $10 can of workable fixative, a can of $2 aqua net hairspray works too. Do a little research and save yourself a ton of money.

Be patient and plan for items you’ll need. Make list of art supplies you know you’ll need and watch for sales. Its hard to walk into an art supply store and not buy all of the neat stuff (At least for me, I am like a kid in a candy shop; art supplies are my “shoes”) but if you are patient and plan ahead you’ll be more likely to get what you need on sale or at a better price online.

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Scan a QR code to get a job!

A job fair in Taiyuan, Shanxi Province introduced a new way to attract job-seekers as well as public attention.

A huge board full of ‪‎QR codes‬ was built on Friday for job-hunters to use their mobile phones to scan the codes which can easily deliver their resumes to their desired employers.

The ‪job‬ fair is said to be the first to use the Internet technology in this manner. The new QR method makes the daunting task of finding a job easier for job seekers who only have to bring their smartphones and scan the QR codes to get electronic tickets, information of companies, and deliver their resumes, instead of bringing their hard copies.

All the company attendees have specified QR codes for their open positions allowing job seekers to deliver their resumes electronically.