change is good


With Tuesday’s election in the US, people all over have been talking about change. Lots of people are saying they want change.

As such, it seemed a good time to offer up some change myself. Some spare change.

I dug out these coin things from deep in the pockets of my brain (and a few from between the couch cushions) just in time for ThThTh.

A Coin Collection¹

  • “Christmas is Coming:” an English Christmas carol

    Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat
    Please put a penny in the old man’s hat
    If you haven’t got a penny a ha’-penny will do
    If you haven’t got a ha’-penny
    then God bless you

  • a penny for your thoughts: an expression spoken as a request to hear about what someone else is thinking. Does not usually actually involve a cash transaction.
  • “A Penny for Your Thoughts,” a treacly song from the faux musical from Waiting for Guffman. (You can hear a version of it performed by Elvis Costello, even. It’s still painfully treacly.)

    So here’s penny for your thoughts, a nickel for a kiss
    A dime if you tell me that you love me

  • lucky penny: Pennies are sometimes kept as good luck charms. Finding a penny is said to bring good luck: “Find a penny, pick it up, and all the day you’ll have good luck.”
  • There is a wedding custom for the bride to put a penny in her shoe for the ceremony for “good fortune and protection against want”:

    Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue and a copper penny in your shoe!

  • penny loafers: shoes in which people would stick a penny as an ornament.
  • “Pennies from Heaven,” a song and a movie from 1936. Originally sung by Bing Crosby, then by many others. (Here’s a youtube version by Billie Holiday.)
  • it’s your nickel: an expression meaning “you made the phone call” and also “it’s your turn to talk.” My grandmother used to say this when I’d call her long-distance.
  • nickel and dime: an expression meaning “cheap” or “inconsequential.”
  • Nickel and Dimed: a book by Barbara Ehrenreich about her experiences working at various low-wage jobs.
  • dime store: a somewhat archaic term for a store carrying various and sundry low-price items.
  • dime bag: the quantity of marijuana that can be purchased for 10 dollars.
  • “Dime,” a song by Cake. About a dime. Really.
  • “shave and a haircut two bits:” a very short song. Two bits is a quarter, or 25 cents. (Apparently small change was once cut wedges of a silver dollar, each worth an 8th of a dollar.)
  • Pac-Man Fever, a song from the 80s (duh) beginning with the line:
    “I got a pocket full of quarters and I’m heading to the arcade.” (Oh, the nostalgia triggered by bad 80s music and references to arcade video games. If you want to subject yourself, you can hear the song on YouTube.)
  • 50 Cent: the stage name of rapper Curtis James Jackson III
  • silver-dollar pancakes: very small pancakes, such as might ressemble a large coin.

dime
———
¹ It’s a bit heavy on the pennies, but so are most change piles.²

² I almost forgot the word of the day. I’ve chosen denticles : “Small tooth like raised points on the inside edge of coins.” How could I resist a word that rhymes with tenticles?

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12 responses to “change is good

  1. Oooh. I haven’t seen the new dollar coin. And I still don’t have the OK quarter. A lady at the Five & Dime nicely gave me the AK quarter last week, so my state quarter collection is nearly complete.

  2. In Canada our dollar coin is called a ‘Loonie’ because it has a loon on the reverse side. The two dollar coin is, accordingly, a ‘Twoonie”. It has a bear on the reverse. All our coins have the Queen on the face.
    How about ‘For two cents I would…………’, meaning, ‘It would not take much for me to …..’.
    I love these posts of yours. A lot of work for you but mega fun for readers.

  3. I love Cake. And cake. But the band, they rock.

  4. “Don’t take any wooden nickels”: a phrase that should be revived in the wake of the whole mortgage bubble fiasco.

    (Also, tangentially enough, an expression I say to my husband every time he leaves the house ala “Goodbye, have fun, don’t do anything I wouldn’t do, don’t take any wooden nickels…” Ah the playful banter of love.)

    Nancy Griffiths’ wonderful song “Love at the 5 and Dime.”

    and, of course:

    “I LOVE ROCK AND ROLL! So put another dime in the juke box, baby.”

  5. Hey, now, don’t be nickel-and-dime-ing me!

    Hmm … What’s that song? “Come on, Mister, take a chance, it’ll only cost you a dime a dance …”

    (And I loved seeing the Loonie stores when I was in Vancouver two years ago!)

  6. Dime bag. Heh-heh.

  7. The Tom Wait’s album “Small Change”

  8. i just read an article about a guy who deliberately paid his $380 parking ticket in pennies. He went to four or five banks and got 38,000 pennies and brought them all in a suitcase.

    they turned him away but i thought it was a heroic gesture on his part.

  9. i learned something today – about the cut up pieces of a silver dollar. crazy!

  10. Oh and there’s also “Put another nickel in, in the Nickelodeon. All I want from lovin’ you is music, music, music.”

  11. There’s an episode of How I Met Your Mother called “Lucky Penny”…about a penny that leads to pretty much nothing but bad luck.

  12. The March of Dimes.

    Clearly I have to stop thinking about this post.

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