Thursday, December 15, 2005

Pennies: Tiny Copper Spawns of Satan

As some of you may or may not know, I have a slight problem with pennies. I find them to be a worthless part of our currency market, and a blight on the smooth face of our debt-ridden and shabby economy. I used to keep all of my pennies in a big jar, mindlessly adding to my collection after every monetary transaction. I would throw penny after penny into the jar in an effort to save up enough of the small copper bastards to purchase something silly like food or gasoline. Then one day, for reasons unknown even to myself, I began to silently hate them.

Those stupid pennies. They sit there, with their dirty-looking color and their strange, metallic taste. They fill up our pockets and coin purses, taking up space and offering nothing in return. They are lazy. They are almost worthless. It takes 10 of their kind, to add up to the same amount as a dime…which is sleeker, newer, and shinier. Pennies are old school. They are lame. They have outlived their usefulness and it is, in my opinion, time to retire them to the scrap heap. Let’s make muffin tins out of them, or something.

And don’t get me started on the fact that it is the fault of the penny that we are forced to put up with the stupid marketing pricing fad of $19.99, as if that one penny saves you a bunch of money. The penny is not our friend. The proof is everywhere.

Anyway, my hatred of pennies rose to new levels the other night, when they finally found themselves in a position to justify their existence to me in a very annoying way. Let me set the scene for you:

Super Target, 9:30pm. Tuesday night. Cold outside. Shanshu was forced to travel out into the cold, cruel world of holiday shopping earlier than expected, for the fact that he was being prodded into a Corporate Christmas Team-Building Event which involved the decorating of stockings in one of the meeting rooms. Searching the rows and rows of holiday decorations, he was able to find a Christmas stocking for the low price of $0.99 and that was as much money as Shanshu was willing to spend on such a lame meeting idea. He traveled up to the checkout register, and smiled at the Super Target lady.

Shanshu: Hello.
Super Target Checkout Lady: Hello. Is this it?
Shanshu: Yes.
Super Target Checkout Lady: Did you have trouble finding anything?
Shanshu: No.
Super Target Checkout Lady: Ok. That will be $1.06, please.
Shanshu: (digging around in pockets) Oh, gosh. I only have $1.00 on me. Jen, do you have any change on you?
Jen: (digging around purse) Yeah, I have 5 pennies.
Shanshu: That’s it? Hmm. (turning to checkout lady) I guess we only have $1.05, apparently. Do you mind if we’re short by a penny? Heh.
Super Target Checkout Lady: Yes, I mind.
Shanshu: Eh?
Annoying Super Target Checkout Lady: I mind. It’s $1.06, not $1.05…you need a penny.
Jen: Are you…are you serious? It’s a penny.
Annoying Penny Nazi Super Target Checkout Lady: I’m sorry.
Shanshu: (regaining consciousness) Wait…can’t you just…spot us the stupid penny?
Rude Annoying Penny Nazi: No. If I do that, my drawer will be off.
Shanshu: By a penny.
Rude Annoying Penny Nazi: I’m sorry, there’s nothing I can do.
Rude Annoying Penny Nazi: Do you have another form of payment?
Shanshu: Well, we wouldn’t want to short your drawer a penny, would we? I guess I’m paying with my credit card.
Rude Annoying Penny Nazi: Fine. Please swipe your card.
Shanshu: (thinking) Can I get cash back with this?
Rude Annoying Penny Nazi: Sure. How much do you want?
Shanshu: A penny.
Very Angry Annoying Penny Nazi:
Shanshu: Never mind. I’ll just put the $1.06 on my card for now.
Very Angry Annoying Ugly Penny Nazi: Here’s your receipt. Goodbye.
Shanshu: Whatever.
Jen: (handing the checkout lady a penny) Here you go. Here’s a penny for you, in case somebody else today is 1 cent short on their purchase.
Very Angry Annoying Ugly Penny Nazi:
Shanshu: Don’t give her that…now her drawer will be over by a penny.

Pennies suck. I rest my case.

Happy Thursday.


musie said...

sorry didnt mean to fall over laughing at your plight. at Ann taylor, almost everything is 49.99, and to use most discounts, it has to be $50 me, I have had this battle many a times with customers and it never ends pretty.

Pizzle said...

OMFG. That was hilarious. Having known you for 14 years or something like that, I've been well aware of your penny-hatred. I think it's BECAUSE of that, that you were in this unfortunate scenario.

But, while I agree that pennies are a blight on our society, you shouldn't blame them for THIS particular circumstance. It's the stupid seasonal-job-whore who is to blame in this case.

Sorry for your frustration, but that was a great story.

Shanshu said...

Oh, trust me: I laughed about this the whole way home. I knew the second it happened, it would become a blog post.

Laugh away. It's funny.

Think Frustrated said...

I like how gasoline is priced at 2.499, so it is actually a tenth of a penny. What color is a tenth of a penny.

Shanshu said...

Black, the same color as the souls of people who think a tenth of a penny is worth putting a stupid gasoline sign.

Pennies are evil. A tenth of a penny is 10 times more evil. Repent, and carry debit cards!

Jen said...

I couldn't believe when that happened. I was shocked as hell. Don't forget to add that every time we go to Target from now on, we're going to go through her line, be rude, and give her a penny.

Kay said...

That is, without a doubt, the funniest shit ever shat. Ever.
And the fact that you're going to go through her line and give her a penny every time is even better.
Fuckin-A, you get some great adventures.

HighMaintenanceHussy said...

How ecstatic was I when the Dutch did away with their 2 and 1 euro cent coins? Enough to host that evening's group bunny with champagne, THAT'S how ecstatic.

Crystal said...

this post had me laughing my ass off. thanks for that.

Anamika Anyone said...

I don't mean to rub this in your face or anything,but in India there aren't any 1 paisa coins anymore! But the "rupees 99.99" concept continues,sadly..

Spinning Girl said...

You rock.

Factoid: Pre-1982 pennies are worth more (higher % of copper), so if you melt yours down to sell the copper, weed out anything that's 1982 or later.

Harry Yak said...

in truth pennies are only good for not getting any pennies. yes, its true. if you are going to use cash you should never have more than four pennies. now in the case of your stocking you were screwed but if you had had say a dollar and a quarter plus your four pennies you could have given her the pennies to get a nickle back. so there you go, the only thing pennies are for is to make sure you don't get more pennies.

Pizzle said...

LOL @ Harry Yak!

I never thought of it like that. HOw funny. And shitty.

DaMasta said...


Holy shit that was funny. I like how the Super Target Check out lady turned into Annoying Super Target check out lady and then to a Penny Nazi all in the same conversation!!

Holy fuck. You crack me up.

Justin said...

THAT WAS FUNNY AS HELL! I laughted, my girlfriend laughted, my kitty snickered (she has NO sense of humor, so that was more that usual).

Great stuff, that Penny Nazi rocked, because your story was only made possible due to her rudness and lack of customer service. Hurray! Way to make a difference, stupid Target Lady!

Connie said...

That's hilarious!