I've been having a bunch of odd experiences on the trains lately. I have this really tatty old rail card. It's basically a card that allows me to get huge discounts off my travel into work in the mornings, I buy it, it lasts a year. I save 30%, I win.
That seems pretty straight forward, but the card has a date on it, the date it expires, and every now and then I get asked to show it. I bought the ticket when I started working outside of London, which was April this year, so the ticket expires on April 2013. However, the inspectors all swear blind that the ticket says April 2012, which of course, makes absolutely no sense to me. When I look at the ticket, I can see that it vaguely says April 2013, I can't for the life of me understand why all of them, every single inspector tells me, ever so confidently, that it says 2012. The card, fortunately has a magnetic strip, which can be scanned and when they do scan it, I always end up being correct, but often they don't have the equipment to check that so I end up in an argument.
Them: This says 2012.
Me: No, it says 2013.
Them: It says 2012.
Me: Except that you're wrong, it doesn't.
Them: If you look at this curve here, you can see that it's clearly a two.
Me: No, that's the curve of a 3 turning back under itself. Look!
It's weird arguing with someone about something you know you're correct about. There's something kind of infuriating about it. Just a while ago, I passed the card to an inspector saying "It's a bit tatty, but its all good" and he says "I'm sure this says 2012, might wanna check that out" and walks away. Now, that was annoying, because this fucking clown of an inspector is now walking away thinking he let me off and I'm two inches from shouting back at him saying "Listen you blind fuck, the number of the card says 2013, not 2012, and if you took a moment to use the brain in that fat balding skull of yours you'll see that!", but then... I realise it's not worth the effort, maybe.
I wanna know what it is though, what's making these people see 2012 rather than 2013. I can only speculate that it's because the card looks old. It looks ancient in comparison to other cards its own age, but it's only that age because it lives in the slot for my debit card, so unlike most other's mine has seen a lot of action. Seeing the apparent age of the card probably makes them incredulous to its actual age and forces them to see the number they expect to see instead of the one that's there.
Other than that I can't figure what could be making these guys hallucinate so violently.