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Patrick A Granfors

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A Penny For My Thoughts?
By Patrick A Granfors
Last edited: Monday, May 23, 2011
Posted: Monday, May 23, 2011

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Patrick A Granfors

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It currently costs the US Mint 1.8 cents to produce a penny. A nickel costs about 8 cents and a quarter costs a dime. A printed bill costs about 4 cents regardless of the denomination

I still pick up pennies in the parking lot

Of course they have to be “heads up”


You know, the old adage,


“Find a penny, pick it up

All day long you’ll have good luck”


That doesn’t apply if the penny is face down though

So in that case I’ll leave it


Sometimes I will turn it over for the next guy to pick up

I guess it’s my tormented version of paying it forward

Seems to work though, they get picked up


When it comes to the rest of the coin universe I don’t care if it is face down. I’ll be superstitious for 1.8 cents but not 8 cents. Every man has his price. Besides you don’t get the good luck benefit picking up the higher valued coins, it only works for pennies.  I really like it when I stumble across older coins. It’s kind of a nostalgic feeling. I found a 1951 quarter a while back. Back then coins actually contained silver. It wasn’t in collectable shape but still it was worth six bucks for its metal content. Amazing. I have a sock in a drawer to keep them in.


Everybody likes to find paper money, even if it’s your own “found” money you forgot you had in a pocket. It just feels like free money.


Washing machines and dryers can be a prime source of currency. Waaaayy back when I did my own, at the local coin operated establishment, I would regularly find money in the machines. I never really knew if it was mine or not but it didn’t matter, green dopamine coursed through my veins.  It was laundered too but for some reason law enforcement turned a blind eye.


Congress is considering doing away with the penny and minting other coins using  steel or aluminum instead of zinc and copper. The Canadians apparently do this already with some of their coins. It probably won’t happen though. The zinc lobby is pretty strong and nobody wants a flimsy aluminum Quarter.


At some point in time the cost to produce all coins will exceed their value but, doesn’t that mean that the coins will once again have value?  Ever since we left the gold standard, printed currency has had no true basis of value. Coin’s values float with the price of raw materials. So for the first time in a long time, money is actually worth something.


If you think about it, maybe you should ask your boss to be paid in nickels.  You could take your metallic “paychecks” to the recycler to cash them. At eight cents for every nickel, that’s just like getting a 60% raise!


If you hadn’t gotten greedy and emptied your pre-1982 piggy bank, you would find that those pennies each contain 2.6 cents worth of copper.


So,  thanks to inflation my current thoughts will cost you nearly two cents now. If you want a pre-1982 thought, it will cost a little extra. Not sure if it’s worth it.




Copyright 2011 Patrick Granfors






Reader Reviews for "A Penny For My Thoughts?"

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Reviewed by Tom Hyland

Was doin' some 'house-cleanin' here, n' got side-tracked. Picked this 'pearl' to read, n' am really glad I did! Like CJ, I LOVED IT! A Perfect story, well-organized, concise, well thought-out, interesting, and ... last but not least ... Informative!

Well Done, Laddie! How is your "Eight-Seater" doin'? Methinks it's Time to 'Light a Fire' under Knave Knucklehead Matlack's Old ARSE !!!

How Say You? Cuz Sir Cur TomKat... The One-Eth ...
Reviewed by CJ Heck
Loved your article, Patrick -- although, I always pick up a penny, or any coin, no matter what side is "up". After all, it says "In God We Trust" on it, so I always pick it up and say, "Thank you, God".
Reviewed by Mr. Ed
“Find a penny, pick it up
All day long you’ll have good luck”

That doesn’t apply if the penny is face down though

Darn It, now you tell me. I wish I had known that useful little tidbit, years ago. No wonder I have such bad luck.

Reviewed by Mark Lichterman
"Washing machines and dryers can be a prime source of currency."
Years ago, when I started my dryer duct cleaning service, Every now and then I would get jobs in Westwood, In buildings near the UCLA campus and very often, in separating the duct from the rear of the dryer, I would find dollar, five and ten dollar bills that were...Jeeze, really funny, but those bills were rolled like -- Jeeze, I cant imagine why they'd do that -- but the bills were rolled like little straws. Of course, when ever I'd find that funny money I would immediately run the building manager and give it him.
Reviewed by Ed Matlack
I wouldn't give a penny for YOUR thoughts, most are so insanity filled they are only worth wooden nickels...;-)e
Reviewed by Annabel Sheila
Giggle....interesting and hilarious perspective, Patrick! Thanks for the chuckles!


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