Intelligencer Journal/Lancaster New Era
It's mostly just a matter of coinage
A few columns ago, I got on my soap box (but kept slipping off ... badda-bum!) about how the United States mint keeps trying -- and failing -- to get us to use dollar coins.
The idea is sound, and I'm all in favor if it. Using coins is far more economical than using paper currency, because coins last forever while paper bills have a brief life span -- unless the bills and coins belong to my daughter, in which case neither lasts very long. At least, not in her possession.
The reason our government can't make the dollar coin succeed is that they also keep making the dollar bill. Only a complete dummy would make both at the same time, which, come to think of it, may explain a lot.
When I was in Europe, I saw no paper bill under 5 euros. Everything else is in coin form.
Even Canada, a country so backward that it puts pictures of beavers on its coins, makes nothing in paper less than a $5 bill.
On a negative note, earlier this year, Canada ceased making the penny. That means soon the only place you'll still find Canadian pennies is in my pocket, because I always seem to have one. They seek me out.
I have mixed feelings on ending the penny, and hope we don't do it here. I've liked pennies ever since I was a boy and laid them on the railroad tracks so trains could smoosh them into large copper-colored globs.
On the other hand, it would stop stores from pricing things at $10.99, $19.99 or $29.99. Just make it $11, $20 or $30, will ya?
Still, you have to love Canada, where the dollar coin is nicknamed a "loonie" and the $2 coin is a "toonie."
n n n
Moving on, I recently received an email that began, "Hope you're well!"
So far, so good.
Then it said, "Celebrity couple Kevin Jonas and Dani Deleasa, along with Dani's sisters Kathleen and Dina, were spotted snagging Repêchage skin care 'survival kits' backstage at Hernan Lander's Fall 2013 show at New York Fashion Week."
I'm not sure what a Repêchage "survival kit" is, but I assume it involves collapsible rafts and marine flares in case of severe flooding.
Anyway, the e-mail went on to tell me that "the Jonas crew received the deluxe skin care kits to keep their skin glowing despite the dry and freezing conditions outside the tents."
Tents? I stopped reading right there because my mind kept asking, "Who in the hell are these people?" Turns out they're from the E! reality show "Married to Jonas," which is one of those shows I'd watch only if it involved the stars pitching those tents on an island occupied by primitive head hunters.
I'd root for the head hunters.
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Still moving on, I love reading those removable letter signs you see in front of some businesses. They can, often inadvertently, be a source of great humor.
One rural country market I frequently pass sells fresh fruit and veggies, but they also make food items. Recently, their sign read "Fresh salads and hogies."
I know what fresh salads are, but hogies? I imagined small pigs on a bun.
One of my favorite signs belongs to a mini market along Route 272 near Ephrata.
The first two lines read:
We have worms"
A special note to those of you sign owners who keep putting the capital letter "N" on backwards! The diagonal crossbar goes left to right, high to low -- not the other way around. Were you absent the day your first-grade teacher taught the "N"?
Amazing. Now, pardon me while I grab my Repêchage "survival kit." It looks like rain.