Saturday, October 12, 2013

Should we get rid of the penny? I say absolutely not.

A roll of pennies saved is a roll to destroy.
Did you ever wonder whether banks count each one of those little Lincolns you carefully wrap and bring in to stoke your savings account? No? I gave my folks reason to think about it during a recent monetary recount.

Maybe it was the smell of money. Maybe it was that things were becoming just a little too tidy in Dad's study. Maybe I just wanted to throw my money around. In any case, I ripped open a bunch of those paper cylinders and left the evidence for my folks to ponder.

If we got rid of the penny, what would happen to Ben Franklin's maxim, "A penny saved is a penny earned?" What about "Find a penny, pick it up, all the day you'll have good luck?" What about all of those kids who learn basic chemistry with a penny and some baking soda and vinegar? We can't disappoint them, can we?

And what about all those dogs who, having nothing else to do besides drive their parents crazy, just like to wreak havoc?

Money. It's attractive. Today Mom observed an assistance dog, Charger—guess he usually prefers credit—nearly go for some dropped change at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts's John Singer Sargent exhibit. Maybe Charger thought his person had dropped it and is trained to pick up such things. Maybe he needed a bit of luck.

My parents really should be happy. Not only did they pick up one penny, they picked up hundreds. Lucky, indeed.