Sunday, January 3, 2010

Thoughts while shopping: the coin jar

The other day, I went shopping with my wife. She was spending her Christmas money. I was calling it quality time; my wife calls it shopping with a six year-old.

I understand why she thinks that shopping with me is like shopping with a six year-old; I am like a kid when I go shopping. Except that most kids do not carry a notebook with them, just in case they come up with a really good idea to write about.

(Disclosure notice: I have not been paid or rewarded in any fashion by any of the businesses that I am about to mention. To see my full disclosure, check out my Golden Dawn blog.)

We went to Bed, Bath and Beyond first. Right off the bat, I picking up and examining items. Is this why my wife says it is like shopping with a six year-old?

One of the first things I spotted was a digital coin jar. One that adds up the amount of coins that you have stuck in the jar. I thought of one of my blogging friends when I saw it, Luke Sidewalker (a man who getting rich one penny at a time). But Luke is smarter than the typical buyer of this jar. I think that he is currently using an old antique mason jar; it is a touch more fancy than the washed out pasta sauce jars that I use.

I really do not see the point of this jar. Are we so dumb as a society that we cannot tell that our total is growing as we dump coins into a jar? Do we really need a digital counter on a jar to tell us that adding a quarter to the jar adds twenty-five cents to our total? Oh wait, we are, ain't we? As a society, we do not know the meaning of saving our spare change, which is one of the reasons so many people are currently deep in debt.

I will admit that I know the meaning of saving my spare change; it is a cold soda out of the vending machine at the end of the semester. That is one of the reasons that I refuse to get a coin jar like this; I do not want to know how much I spend on soda, chips and candy bars each semester. I rather think of it as half a pasta jar full of coins instead.

There is also the little fact that I have to manually count the coins and put them in rolls if I decide to take them to the bank. It is not like this jar is going to do it for me. And if I decide to use the CoinStar instead, it will count the coins for me…I do not need to shell out money for a jar to do a job that either me or a machine is going to redo later (besides the CoinStar takes its cut if I use it).

It might also be the fact that I am really cheap (I do not actually use CoinStar), and/or poor (a strong possibility: I have dodged traffic to pick up a handful of pennies), and/or really would rather spend my money on a dozen sodas instead of a novelty coin-counting jar (ahh, I think that is really the answer).

Well, that is all for today---but tune in tomorrow for more of the thoughts I had while shopping with my wife.

Corrected on 10 January 10: Obviously, in my mind Luke Skywalker is busy picking up coins in New York, while Luke Sidewalker is busy fighting the evil Empire. It should be the other way around, except that there really is an evil branch of the Empire located in New York (oh, don't tell me you haven't noticed).


Mr. ? said...

Many thanks and much appreciation for the mention Morgan. However I think you may have made a Freudian slip, as my name is Luke Sidewalker not Skywalker. Normally I let such trivialities slide by me, but I felt compelled to say something on this occasion as I don't want George Lucas to unleash his multi-million dollar team of copyright attorneys on me (and you for that matter!)

Thanks again.

-Luke Sidewalker

Morgan Drake Eckstein said...

Thanks for catching that. I corrected it, and made a joke about the correction.