Free pipes at Lowes

A few years ago I was standing in a long line at the Alton Lowes, probably buying some home renovation junk. The guy being checked out at the front of the line had a cart full of drainage PVC pipes. Expensive pipes and lots of them. The teenage cashier can’t get one of them to scan, so she picks up her phone and says, “Plumbing, call 203!” or whatever the extension for her register was. I pulled out my cell phone and called Lowes and asked for extension 203 and her phone rings. I was at the back of the line, so I turned around and hoped that the man in front of me wouldn’t hear me talking. She explains her problem and reads the barcode to me. I tell her, “Oh, that particular pipe is free as long as he’s purchasing at least $20 of other pipes of the same diameter. That’s why it won’t scan.” So the guy gets 2 of these pipes free of charge. Too bad I couldn’t do that with my own purchases.

I wonder what would happen if I told that cashier of my hilarious prank on her when it was my turn in line. “Yeah, that was me on my cell phone. His pipes weren’t really free. I sure tricked you a good one!” Would she be shocked or amused? Would I get slapped? Would she call security? Thrown out of the store for life? I guess I’ll never know.

Reminds me of when I was at the same Lowes buying the 4′ molds for my concrete footings for the deck. Or whatever those big cardboard cylinder things are called. I had 3 of them, costing about $8 each. And they were all inside of each other so it looked as if there was just 1 of them in the cart. The cashier scans it (just 1) and the rest of my merchandise and I begin to pay. I wasn’t trying to scam her, that’s just how they were stacked on the shelf and that’s how I put them in my cart. Just then her phone rings and she picks it up. I can hear the voice on the phone telling her that I have more mold tubes inside of the one tube she scanned. She hangs up, explains her mistake to me, and scans another $16 for me to pay. I’m guessing it was security who zoomed in on my tubes. How sneaky!

Makes me wonder what kind of crazy things I could get a cashier to believe if I called her on her register phone.

“This is Steven from security. The man in line has a bucket of joint compound hidden inside his coat. Ask him to open his coat for you!”

“Hey Cindy, your credit card machine isn’t authorizing that card properly for some reason. You need to write down the full card number, the expiration date and the 3 digit code from the back. And just stick the paper you write it on in your pocket and we’ll just get it from you later.”

“It’s employee discount day. You’re supposed to be ringing up ALL purchases at the employee discounted rate.”

Or I guess I could do something like this.


  • those would be some interesting recordings for pla radio

  • I have a cousin who’s job it was to test walmart’s security systems for them. She was able to steal whole pallets of stuff apparently.

  • Finally an update, and a pretty darn funny one, too. I’ll have to try that when I go to Kmart tomorrow. =D

  • Lowes people are idiots. I picked up a store phone and “accidentally” activated every customer service pager (“Special Assistance needed in “) and they banned me for life.

  • Well, since I am one of these lowes idiots, I can tell you that our crappy discount is only 10%, so im not sure if you want to waste your time on it. Good job though, if I was your cashier you would have been screwed because I can tell if the source is an outside line or not.

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