10 Insults Hidden On Shopping Receipts

Do you know the one of the three overweight women who walk into a restaurant and get an electronic receipt with the words "FAT GIRLS" on it? Sadly, you probably do because it's not the first time something like this has happened. This time the victims were these three women in Stockton, California, and the list keeps growing. Insulting people on receipts is officially a trend now.

It seems some people are now so used to insult using Twitter, Facebook or any other internet forum, that they have lost the most basic of civilised behaviours. Perhaps these people now detach themselves from the consequences of their actions whenever they are behind a screen and a keyboard, even if it's a restaurant terminal or a cashier.

Maybe they have grown so insensitive that anything goes for them, that they can't distinguish between internet life and real life. After all, it's all the same life. Unfortunately, instead of being civilised online like they should be in face to face interactions -- or risk getting a punch or fired -- people are moving this conduct to the real world too.

ABC News reports that these three friends got the "Fat Girls" insult after dining at Chilly D's in the Cameo Casino Restaurant, in Stockton, California. Their server Jeff wrote it on the restaurant's electronic billing system. One of the women -- Christine Duran -- said that even the manager had a "smirk on his face" when they called him to complain.

A RadioShack customer in Maryland got "ugly itch" from "ghettohood" and "tattoville" because she had tattoos on her arm.

Sometimes it's not insults but plain sexual harassment.

Or a desperate guy trying to get laid.

I can imagine Biff, the knucklehead who barely graduated from high school writing this from behind the counter of a nobody restaurant.

Racial remarks.

More racial remarks.

Sometimes it's not about race or physical appearance.

It's not only in the United States. In England, the parents of a a rowdy kid got this when the bill came.

In South Korea, restaurants often mark their customers if they are "foreigners". Of course, most foreigners never notice it.



    One of the women — Christine Duran — said that even the manager had a “smirk on his face” when they called him to complain.

    Oh i'm sorry, didn't know that you fatties can see through the telephone

      my thought exactly.
      but hell i work as a waiter and that's how i identify my customers i don't say to the cook when they ask me what table an order is for i don't say " the woman in the blue blouse" i say "fat chick in the corner" or "Asian family in the middle". can it be insulting sure i am after all using your most visually defining characteristic which is rarely flattering but its more efficient when dealing with co workers.

        I can see this, even I do it and I'm not even in the fast-paced food industry. The important thing is to not let the customer see this, it's not cool. Contrary to what a certain post below says, being an asswipe just because of physical features is a shit reminder that you can be physically fit, but mentally disgusting.

        I'm overweight, I could cut down on eating shit, but short of someone being a rude so-and-so, I accept people might have things that are better left unsaid and prefer to have it that way.

        This. I also used to work in a restaurant and I suspect that whoever did the receipt didn't mean it as an insult, it was just the table descriptor they used to keep track of who was sitting where. The only crime he committed was forgetting to delete the descriptor before giving it to the customer :P

          When I worked as a Waiter we used to use an old fashioned system, it was called TABLE NUMBERS!!

          Jeez, How bloody hard is it to be polite?

        this is the reason i don't tip. service might be exceptionally good and all but deep down inside I know you're all low lives.

          That's a pathetic excuse for being a tight arse. If you can't afford to tip, you really can't afford to go there.

          No. The reason you don't tip is because you're a tight-ass.

            if australian waiters were making $5 an hour i'd be happy to tip but they make quite a bit more than that. in australia there isn't any need to tip. the cost of a meal and/or drink these days is ridiculous compared the very very average service and quality. in the US its a different story. it's basically a service fee which is not included in the meal price. fair enough. also service in the US is light years ahead of australia. i don't think i've ever received anything more than adequate service from a restaurant/pub/cafe in australia. so no tip for you.

            Last edited 12/12/12 1:58 pm

              This. I really can't understand why Australia has adopted the tipping convention when the salaries of our waiting staff are significantly higher than their US counterparts. It's stupid and unnecessary. Why should I be expected to tip roughly 10% just because someone did their job?

      I'm not sure of when they "called" but if they "called" him over to their table to complain then they would have seen the smirk.

        Unlike the douche above when I worked in restaraunts in Brisbane we actually remembered the table numbers. We prided ourselves on customer service usually and ended up with the tips to match it. Attitude will reflect performance in the end. They say 'I'm sure hey didn't mean it' ok, so the next time they're in a restaraunt let's see how they react to a receipt that says 'nerdy pimply faced white dude with glasses' or 'gook in corner', all horrible things to write, but hey it's ok because IT'S DESCRIPTIVE!

          Exactly. Every restaurant and cafe I've ever worked in has used table numbers not some half-assed subjective description of who's sitting where. I guess remembering numbers is just too hard for some people.

      ...or there is an error in the article, and it should read "when they called him over".

      Hilarious that you accuse fat people of lying, instead of the article's writer of being sloppy.


      Last edited 12/12/12 12:54 pm

    Ergh, fat people. Sorry to say I pretty much hate the entire population of fat people. CHECK YOUR THIN PRIVILEGE. I have every right to be fat all that stupid crap. No you are just lazy and sedentary. Don't try and put us down because we have aren't lazy and put an effort into our lives to look and be healthy.

      I quietly agree for the most part

        "I quietly agree for the most part"

        I quietly think that for the most part these pathetic little morons aren't being "put down" because they put an effort into their lives to look and be healthy, but because they are simple gutter trash trying to compensate for their own inadequacies by highlighting someone else's.

        Still, we should have some sympathy for them, after all, the fatties can choose to lose their weight but being gutter trash is a character trait.


      Last edited 11/12/12 11:57 pm

      I completely agree. The sheer amount of weed I smoked to lose all my undesired weight. Man. That took effort.

      There is a very real problem in Australia with obesity, more than in the USA.

      there are many reason for an individual to be overweight...

        actually there's only ONE reason - they are shovelling more calories down their throat than their body needs

      You Sir (or Madam), are a bigot.

    im sick of the racial bullshit.
    if you cant call an asian 'asian' what do you call him then? thin dude with black hair that does all his homework? no. he's asian.
    a black person is african american, african or one of many other dark skinned races - its too much effort to correctly determine someone else's race.
    a white person is white. im not going to ask every single white person what race/culture they identify with.
    the three fat girls ARE fat. what else are they?!?!?

    the stuff about ugly itch, tattooville, hooker, one night stand michael or the little f**ker are inappropriate however.

      the three fat girls ARE fat. what else are they?!?!?

      Female maybe? Lets see your pic Fabio.

        yea, but there are probably also other females in the restaurant as well......

          Which is why you memorise table numbers. If you dont, you wont last long in a restaraunt.

      Check your disability pension card. It will have your name listed on there rather than "retarded oxygen thief" because names are simpler

      The idea that anybody would think a description of 'Asian' is derogatory is, in itself, racist. Would anybody be offended by being described as 'White family' if, for example, they were in a restaurant mainly populated by other skin colours and this was the quickest way to distinguish their order from others? How can that be offensive?

      the three fat girls ARE fat. what else are they?!?!?

      They're the "women sitting at table X". Table numbers seem to work elsewhere so why not here?

    I do it all the time, but our receipt messages stay internal for that exact reason (they'll show up on kitchen/drink tickets but not on your final bill). Most of the time, our messages are simply uncensored truth so that people are easy to find out on the floor. Examples:

    "Behemoth in the corner"
    "Junkie on the outside tables pocketing cutlery"
    "Bald old guy with prostitute"

    Awwww, poor widdle ladies... ;_;
    This is like something from Today Tonight.

      little???...i lol'ed, lol'ed hard in the office...

      Last edited 12/12/12 3:29 pm

    The "journalism" of this piece reeks of Today Tonight (@Australians). As stated previously in comments, it's much more likely to be standard kitchen talk/descriptors than them actually customizing it to actually be deliberately insulting. I doubt any of the employee's of these places actually ever looked at what was on a recipt before - probably too busy rushing their ass off to serve you efficiently.

    Besides that, you offer no actual information/facts besides anecdotal evidence. Amusing, perhaps. Damning, no way.

    The lack of decency in this comment thread is sickening

      Indeed. It's disgusting. I'd expect it from 4chan. True bottom feeders here today.

        Well I browse there, so maybe others do too. We don't have to like fat people, and most of the time, my predictions and assumptions about them are right. They think they can insult us because we are fitter and better looking then them, even though in the end they are lazy and grotesque? Please.

          You're instantly one of the most repugnant people I'm thankful I've never met...

            Also beansyy I think you're mistaken. People don't despise you because you're allegedly fit and healthy, with comments like that they despise you because you're a judgemental asshole.

              Well yes I'm judgemental, but this is the internet, so I can be whatever I want, besides, in real life, I'm generally a nice guy.

                You know what. That's an answer I completely respect.

                  Ha thanks I guess.

      It's because weight is one of the few things people feel the can still judge someone on.
      You can't be racist or homophobic any more (well you can but it's basically frowned upon these days) but judging people on their weight is still fair game.
      So all the idiots that used to sprout racist and homophobic nonsense now abuse the "fatties".
      It's pretty appalling really and shows a distinct lack of character and intelligence.

        No it's because you choose to be overweight (barring those that obviously have a genetic disorder which is about 1% of overweight people) but you don't choose to be born white/asian/homosexual etc

        There is a problem with obesity in the first world and i feel like people tip toe around it too much. The fact is those three girls are obese and risk a huge number of dangers such as heart attacks and diabetes. It is not normal, healthy or sane to be obese and no one should condone it at all. Same goes for smokers/alcoholics/junkies, they choose to over indulge and it is not healthy.

        I'm not saying we should hate on fat people, we can HELP people to lose weight (but only if they help themselves), but we shouldn't act like it's ok.

          So you wake up one day and go "Hey you know what? I'm going be fat and have all those problems that go along with it. Because that will be an awesome idea!"
          Is that what you are saying by being overweight is a choice?
          There are a lot of issues obesity. Including mental, social and economic.
          It is NOT a simple "choice" to be obese. And those that think it is should be happy because it is obvious they are of a middle - upper class background who haven't had to struggle in their life.
          This is particular the case in America where there are many connections between obesity and its associated problems and ethnicity and income.
          It goes back to moves made by the American government years ago with the intention of getting rid of health issues related to malnutrition but has instead flooded the market wit cheap, unhealthy food. There are links to the handful of companies that control the billion dollar industry of school lunches in America. These are the same people that lobbied the American government to say tomato base on a pizza makes it a vegetable. And succeeded. These companies supply rubbish food to schools where many of the kids for poor backgrounds will only have that one school lunch as their meal for the day.
          So how about you actually go out and read a bit before sprouting rubbish about obesity being a "choice". Because if the answer was as simple as choosing to eat healthy then this wouldn't be a problem.

            I call bullshit on that. Unless you're living in a third world country where sufficient food is literally unavailable, you have no excuse to be eating an unhealthy diet. Blaming it on your socio-economic background or on junk food advertising is just shifting responsibility away from the individual.

            Don't like what your school is serving your kids for lunch? Then pack them a healthy lunch to take with them, and educate them on the necessity of healthy eating. Don't think you can afford healthy food? The healthiest food available is often among the cheapest. Sure, I could spend $10 on a large Big Mac meal, or for the same price I can buy enough fresh fruit and vegetables, rice, and bread to last me a week. Obesity IS a choice. The only people who think it isn't are those too ignorant to see otherwise.

              *sigh* Got to love that middle class privilege shining through.
              There are many scientific studies that have been done that link ones socio-economic background and obesity.
              Those of a lower socio-economic background are also less likely to be higher educated and often have a lesser understanding of health and food.
              And yeap those parents that struggle to pay the rent, and the power bills really have the time and money to pack their kids a healthy lunch. These people rely on their kids having the meal provided by the school because they can not afford to buy them lunch!
              But hey it's their fault they are poor right?
              I mean if they wanted to be healthy then they should just earn more money to eat better!
              It's their choice to be poor. Just like it's their choice to be obese.
              Obesity is not a choice. And anyone that thinks different is too ignorant and enclosed in their little middle class world to understand that there are such things as "poor people" out there.

                And yeap those parents that struggle to pay the rent, and the power bills really have the time and money to pack their kids a healthy lunch... But hey it's their fault they are poor right?
                I mean if they wanted to be healthy then they should just earn more money to eat better!

                If you bothered reading my previous post you'd see I already addressed this point:
                Don't think you can afford healthy food? The healthiest food available is often among the cheapest. Sure, I could spend $10 on a large Big Mac meal, or for the same price I can buy enough fresh fruit and vegetables, rice, and bread to last me a week.

                The point is, if you can afford unhealthy junk food, then you sure as hell can afford cheaper, healthier alternatives.

                Those of a lower socio-economic background are also less likely to be higher educated and often have a lesser understanding of health and food.
                I call bullshit on that too. You don't have to be "higher educated" to know that chips, meat pies, and burgers are less healthy than fresh fruit and vegetables.

                Yes, obesity is more prevalent among people of a lower socio-economic background. Yes, there is a clear link. But don't make the mistake of thinking that being poor somehow means that you don't have a choice but to be obese. I think you'd agree that's a ridiculous statement to make.

                  You're aware that by and large unhealthier food is generally cheaper right? Packs of deep fried processed food or bulk pies vs fresh fruit and veg? Try shopping for it.

        That's because you can't change your race or sexual orientation. Being fat is a lifestyle choice. Yes, some fat people are fat because of some medical condition, but the vast majority are fat because they eat too much and/or exercise too little.

          You know, that doesn't make it excusable.

            No, it doesn't, and I'm not saying that fat people should be ridiculed. But that doesn't mean that obesity should be considered acceptable either.

    I just can't get over Coke at $1 per serve !

    The comments about this are pretty nasty. Isn't the real point of this article the unprofessional behaviour of the waiters? I would certainly fire them. They are bad for business.

    As for the 'fat girls' being on a Today Tonight style program. Good on them if they stop people going to an abusive restaurant. Were they supposed to just take it quietly?

    I've yet to see this happen in Australia.

      That's because we mostly go by table numbers or order numbers.

    Who cares? I'm fat and I'm old and if I had a problem being described as such, I'd attempt to do something about it. Those women are fat, there was nothing insulting on that bill, simply descriptive. If it said something like "fat pigs" or "fat sluts", then they woudl have something to get upset about. As it is, they need to either lose weight or get over it.

    Like smokers to a non smoker, fat people disgust me. These three unhealthy women are extremely fat girls and completely deserving of the reference. If they'd prefer to be referred to as "Hot Girls" they need to do something about their disgraceful figures and the very first place to start is by cutting out soft drinks and eating healthy foods you cook for yourself. Everyone needs to stop blaming their blatantly obvious problems on others.

    I've received a receipt with descriptors in it before in Australia, and it said Asian, glasses, black shirt... Sufficient descriptors to identify me when it gets busy. These descriptors are based on what the other person sees you as a unique identifier, as an opinion, and not an insult. If you take offence at being called an asian with glasses, go bleach yourself and wear contacts.
    Though some of the receipts in this article were overboard, most of it is just a description, and if you find it offensive then you need to get a better outlook. If you're not happy with the way you are described, then maybe you're part of the problem, so don't force your own opinions of yourself back upon the people who has an opinion of you... That's hypocrisy.

    Fat people are gross and deserve to be insulted untill they lose the weight society is far to accepting thats why they don't fix the fatness

      Stupid people are gross and deserve to be insulted untill they lose the idiocy society is far to accepting thats why they don't fix the stupidity

      See what I did there, @ra2100? You stupid sack of crap...

      Last edited 12/12/12 11:58 am

    It's not about whether being fat or having tattoos is OK, nor even how you refer to customers internally. It's just unprofessional and inconsiderate to reveal the somewhat less-than-ideal inner workings of the business to them.

    Maccas doesn't show videos of the production lines used to behead, de-feather and prepare chooks when I'm there to get my McNuggets; JB HiFi doesn't remind me that I'm contributing to the exploitation of impoverished children when I'm looking for a new

    Some of the comments left here are some of the most disturbing I've ever read. I sometimes get the feeling of being 'unwanted' in a restaurant, or judged. Sydney is my city, but unfortunately, like many of us, I can't control racial attitudes towards me, and there are many, particular from those who are new to my city. If I found that those opinions people were thinking (and which to me are obvious) are ever expressed in words or actions, I would ensure that person is made held accountable for it and does not repeat it. For all of you people who think it's acceptable to treat others this way, service industry or not, you have major growing up to do. At some point, visit a hospital, see the cancer patients. Help the homeless. Lose somebody to a disease. You will soon discover all people are equal, all human. Your insults and disrespect for others will return to you at some point in your lives.

      All people are NOT equal, people are defined by their actions, not their race or gender or sexual orientation. I work hard and try to contribute to a lot of things, and so do a lot of other people, so don't lump me in with fat, lazy morons or stupid, pathetic junkies. You have the option to be a good person so TAKE IT, don't be a dick.

      At least i'm a person, you're a goddamn shoe.

    At the end of the day, it's an insight into how we are all viewed by the waitstaff. Yes, not good to leave offensive descriptors on a receipt, but each description is actually indicative of how each customer or group of customers was initially viewed. Yes, remove the insults, but none of us can change the impression we make upon the waitstaff!

    For the sake of ease when differentiating between people & objects, humans naturally single out the thing most easily & truthfully noticable as a commonly-shared trait that's different to others in the immediate vicinity. Like the 3 redheads over there, or the 3 people in wheelchairs, or the 3 really old men. Asian people are Asian, white people are white, black people are black, male or female, short or tall, long hair, bald, tattooed, piereced, wearing fluoro yellow hats, whatever. Pointing out a physical trait unique to one group out of several is perfectly natural.

    Imagine if you had to give a description to the police but weren't allowed to use descriptions like gender, age, race, skin & hair colour, height, body shape/size etc for fear of being charged with a hate crime or labelled as racist etc?

    As long as you use a neutral statement as a description without any form of derogatory or insulting language (eg. 'large women' instead of 'fatties') it's fine. And it's best these descriptions are kept privvy to the wait staff only & not visible to the patrons. Table numbers also work a treat, but not always (you're new so don't know them yet, tables shift around constantly etc).

    But ultimately, people have the right to say whatever the hell they want, and just because someone else might get offended *gasp!* (which happens so easily & often these days you think it's illegal), honestly some people just gotta toughen the hell up. You don't have the right to not be offended. If you're 200kg and someone calls you fat, well, you are. Move on.

    Last edited 12/12/12 2:50 pm

    Not sure what all the fuss is about. How is describing people as "fat girls" any more insulting than describing them as "tall girls" or "brunette girls"? Being fat is a physical trait, and no matter how politically correct you want to be about it, the fact of the matter is those girls are fat. Luckily, unlike things such as race or height, weight is something that can be changed. If those girls find an accurate description of their body shape to be insulting, then maybe they should do something about it.

    TL;DR summary at bottom if you don't enjoy rants

    Everyone should always love themselves for who they are, but you should also love yourself enough to live healthy. Accepting the fact that you are obese is pathetic in my eyes. If someone is obese (excluding physical/mental impairments) , why shouldn't that person be told that their lifestyle is toxic? Poor life choices shouldn't be sugar coated, otherwise you will have a future generation thinking it's the norm. The only person to blame is yourself and those 99 cent burritos from Taco Bell that you annihilate at 2AM. It's socially acceptable to tell alcoholics, smokers, and drug addicts that they're unhealthy. Why not obese people? I personally wouldn't care if a person is obese, if it only harmed themselves. This is the real world though, and kids are impressionable and tend to follow in the parent's footsteps when it comes to lifestyle. I'm not downplaying the small percentage of people who are predisposed, but if I had to guess I'd say less than 1% of the obese population can play that card.

    My favorite is when I hear "I'm just big boned" and the person honestly believes it. If they really think they have "big bones," they should be more worried about Kashin-Beck disease lol. At least people can rest assured that their gut is more than likely fueled by the all mighty Big Mac instead of bone thickness. It's almost a fad to blame obesity on genetics. If you think I'm talking out of my ass, ask any MD/DC/RN how many patients they believe should be allowed to say their obesity is a direct result of inheritance. I have seen it all when it comes to people not accepting responsibility when they come into the ER. It is a joy dealing with people all day who don't take responsibility for their health. Part of being a physician is giving people the blunt truth, sometimes the truth hurts and people need to suck it up.

    On the subject of these people writing insults on the receipts, as mean as it sounds, I'd bet good money that the customers were being assholes. I worked as a waiter when I was younger, and the average waiter won't randomly write insults unless there is a reason. If I had to take a guess, I would bet those insults on the receipts had more to do with retaliating for something the customer did, rather than some random insult about their weight. I wish society would get over all of this accepting obesity bullshit. At the same time though, constructive criticism works better.

    TL;DR summary

    If you are obese, don't be. The end.

    Last edited 23/09/15 8:58 pm

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