A Money Coach in Canada

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2066724689_ca8c887aa7True story, by Captain Sarcastic, verified (and expanded upon) by Snopes:

On my way home from the second job I’ve taken for the extra holiday ca$h I need, I stopped at Taco Bell for a quick bite to eat. In my billfold is a $50 bill and a $2 bill. That is all of the cash I have on my person. I figure that with a $2 bill, I can get something to eat and not have to worry about people getting upset at me.

ME: “Hi, I’d like one seven layer burrito please, to go.”
IT: “Is that it?”
ME: “Yep.”
IT: “That’ll be $1.04, eat here?”
ME: “No, it’s to go.” [I hate effort duplication.]

At his point I open my billfold and hand him the $2 bill. He looks at it kind of funny and

IT: “Uh, hang on a sec, I’ll be right back.”

He goes to talk to his manager, who is still within earshot. The following conversation occurs between the two of them.

IT: “Hey, you ever see a $2 bill?”
MG: “No. A what?”
IT: “A $2 bill. This guy just gave it to me.”
MG: “Ask for something else, there’s no such thing as a $2 bill.” [my emp]
IT: “Yeah, thought so.”

He comes back to me and says

IT: “We don’t take these. Do you have anything else?”
ME: “Just this fifty. You don’t take $2 bills? Why?”
IT: “I don’t know.”
ME: “See here where it says legal tender?”
IT: “Yeah.”
ME: “So, shouldn’t you take it?”
IT: “Well, hang on a sec.”

He goes back to his manager who is watching me like I’m going to shoplift, and

IT: “He says I have to take it.”
MG: “Doesn’t he have anything else?”
IT: “Yeah, a fifty. I’ll get it and you can open the safe and get change.”
MG: “I’m not opening the safe with him in here.” [my emp]
IT: “What should I do?”
MG: “Tell him to come back later when he has real money.”
IT: “I can’t tell him that, you tell him.”
MG: “Just tell him.”
IT: “No way, this is weird, I’m going in back.”
The manager approaches me and says

MG: “Sorry, we don’t take big bills this time of night.” [it was 8pm and this particular Taco Bell is in a well lighted indoor mall with 100 other stores.]
ME: “Well, here’s a two.”
MG: “We don’t take those either.”
ME: “Why not?”
MG: “I think you know why.”
ME: “No really, tell me, why?”
MG: “Please leave before I call mall security.”
ME: “Excuse me?”
MG: “Please leave before I call mall security.”
ME: “What for?”
MG: “Please, sir.”
ME: “Uh, go ahead, call them.”
MG: “Would you please just leave?”
ME: “No.”
MG: “Fine, have it your way then.”
ME: “No, that’s Burger King, isn’t it?”

At this point he backs away from me and calls mall security on the phone around the corner. I have two people staring at me from the dining area, and I begin laughing out loud, just for effect. A few minutes later this 45 year oldish guy comes in and says [at the other end of counter, in a whisper]

SG: “Yeah, Mike, what’s up?”
MG: “This guy is trying to give me some [pause] funny money.”
SG: “Really? What?”
MG: “Get this, a two dollar bill.”
SG: “Why would a guy fake a $2 bill?” [incredulous]
MG: “I don’t know? He’s kinda weird. Says the only other thing he has is a fifty.”
SG: “So, the fifty’s fake?”
MG: “No, the $2 is.”
SG: “Why would he fake a $2 bill?”
MG: “I don’t know. Can you talk to him, and get him out of here?”
SG: “Yeah…”
Security guard walks over to me and says

SG: “Mike here tells me you have some fake bills you’re trying to use.”
ME: “Uh, no.”
SG: “Lemme see ’em.”
ME: “Why?”
SG: “Do you want me to get the cops in here?”

At this point I was ready to say, “SURE, PLEASE,” but I wanted to eat, so I said

ME: “I’m just trying to buy a burrito and pay for it with this $2 bill.”

I put the bill up near his face, and he flinches like I was taking a swing at him. He takes the bill, turns it over a few times in his hands, and says

SG: “Mike, what’s wrong with this bill?”
MG: “It’s fake.”
SG: “It doesn’t look fake to me.”
MG: “But it’s a $2 bill.”
SG: “Yeah?”
MG: “Well, there’s no such thing, is there?”

The security guard and I both looked at him like he was an idiot, and it dawned on the guy that he had no clue.

My burrito was free and he threw in a small drink and those cinnamon things, too. Makes me want to get a whole stack of $2 bills just to see what happens when I try to buy stuff. If I got the right group of people, I could probably end up in jail. At least I’d get free food.

About the Author


Imagine if Canadians were known for being all over their money. Engaged. Proactive. Getting out of debt. Savvy. Saving. Generous. Nancy wants to help. Nancy started her own journey with money over 15 years ago, and formed her company “Your Money by Design” in 2004 to help others along the same path. It’s not the usual financial advising/investment stuff. It’s about taking control of day-to-day finances –managing monthly cashflow effectively, spending appropriately, getting out of debt, saving. If you're ready to take control over your finances, pop by her business site, YourMoneybyDesign.com

7 Comments

  1. Sandra

    Hilarious! Thanks for sharing.

    [Reply]

    Mar 14, 2009
  2. This is the best article I’ve read all week. So funny! I can’t believe both the manager and employee had never seen a $2 bill. That would be a fun experiment to try and spend $2 bills when making small purchases and see how many employees have never seen one.

    Scott @ The Passive Dad’s last blog post..Are You Thinking Too Much About Money? 10 Ways To Deal With Financial Stress

    [Reply]

    Mar 14, 2009
  3. OMG! What a freaking moron!!! My mom used to save $2 bills. They were kind of special and we hated spending them.

    This is such a sad statement about our education system. Good grief.

    megscole64’s last blog post..Business Idea – Booth Sitter

    [Reply]

    Mar 15, 2009
  4. Ahhh. I needed that. Thanks, Nancy.

    Say, have you considered pitching Taco Bell? Seems like they could use a money coach. (Or is that currency coach?)

    [Reply]

    Mar 16, 2009
  5. That has to be the most hilarious thing I think that I have ever read in my life!! I keep a stack of them at home and my brother even has a few uncut sheets at home too. I absolutely love it. It makes me want to get one of those bills out and try to send it too. Hee hee hee.

    Sandy’s last blog post..Would You Pay For Work?

    [Reply]

    Mar 18, 2009
  6. That is hilarious! I guess that’s why he’s managing a Taco Bell.

    [Reply]

    Apr 16, 2009

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