Do you pick up pennies?

Do you pick up pennies? I do, and this morning I struck a bonanza (not the one with Hoss, though).

I was plugging the meter with quarters when I dropped one. As I bent to pick it up, I remember having read or heard someone saying that, with inflation, it’s not worth the trouble. Well, it is to me. For that matter, I still pick up pennies. I like to say to myself, as I straighten back up, “And all the day you’ll have good luck.” It’s just, I don’t know, a little gesture of faith in life, an optimistic way to look at things. Bright penny, bright outlook. It pleases me.

Well, today, not 10 seconds after I picked up my own quarter, over across the street I came upon another quarter on the sidewalk — a 2007 with Montana on the back (why does “Montana on the back” ring a bell? Oh, yeah — Montana Wildhack). So I picked it up and put it in my left pants pocket, where it couldn’t get mixed up with the ordinary coins for spending.

Twenty-five days good luck. This could not have come at a better time for me. I resolve to make the most of them.

It occurred to me that I’d have even better luck it I gave it away, but no panhandlers came up to me. When one does, I’ll give it to him or her. Of course, I’ll have to hope it’s not one of those picky panhandlers who turns his nose up at a dollar. Maybe if I explain that it’s a lucky quarter… ah, but I can see the look of withering contempt now…

No, no… it’s a positive vision of the future that we’re embracing here. Bright quarter. Bright immediate future. This is great…

10 thoughts on “Do you pick up pennies?

  1. Brad Warthen

    And then, when I got back to my truck, I saw Lovely Rita making her way down the row of meters toward me. I glanced at mine, and I had 5 minutes left. I could have just sat there, and watched her get to me, and move on. I could blow her a kiss — “Hullo, luv,” in my best Paul McCartney. Not sarcastic, not taunting, just enjoying life. Maybe she’d smile.

    But I had places to go.

    You see, though? The luck’s kicked in already…

  2. Doug Ross

    For me, it’s not the value of the penny due to inflation – it’s whether the pain in my back and knees from bending over is worth it. Some days, it would have to be a dollar before I’d risk it.

  3. kbfenner

    I pick up pennies. I think you get “good luck” because you are being attentive, looking for the good things and being present in the moment.

    My BFF believes they are a message from her late mother–pennies from heaven. It brings her a lot of comfort. Who am I to question?

    Once, as an underfunded little girl (maybe ten years old), I found a $20 bill in a motel parking lot. My parents let me keep it. Wow! Jackpot. Haven’t done the math to figure out if that luck has run out yet. I guess it has, at $3.65 a year.

  4. Lora Prill

    So, the good luck offered by pennies and quarters apparently has no control over email technology. 🙂 (Happy face included to balance the frown you received earlier.)

  5. Claudia

    I pick them up, too, then take them home where they eventually get dropped into an enormous pickle jar my mother-in-law bought at a yard sale. It’s about three-quarters (heh-heh) full now… anyone else still save pennies?

  6. kbfenner

    Now now Burl–here on the mainland you only need to do it 198 or so times.

    and isn’t coffee cheaper over there–Kona, anyway?

    In an improv scene down in Charleston, one of my teammates was talking about the pineapple trees in the backyard. What exactly do you call what pineapples grow on? A shrub? Just a plant?

  7. Bob

    My wife and I both pick up coins; we have averaged over $20 a year over the past several years. It has become a game for us; that’s why we keep track. We found two dollar bills at the airshow last week. I once found a $100 bill, but it was in front of someone’s house (and near Christmas), so I knocked on the door and said, “I just found this; pleasae be more careful with your money.” Another time I found a $20 bill, and two weeks later a $5 and a $20. Each time the bills were out in the road and not near any residence.

    We are finding less money now then during better economic times (makes sense). It is interesting we find much of our money near schools and churches. It is concerning we seem to find the most money in lower income neighborhoods.

  8. lucy

    You probably find more lost cash in lower income neighborhoods because the folks who live there don’t have checks, debit cards or credit cards.

Comments are closed.