Friday, April 27, 2012

Adventures in Cash

Adventures in Cash, of course
I don't spend a lot of time with cash.  I have a tendency to spend cash more easily that any other payment option, and since I don't bank locally, going to the ATM is a bit of a pain (though less than it used to be), and I'm just not in the habit.

This week, however, I have had a couple fun encounters with cash that were both completely random.

Last Saturday, one of our regular library patrons came up to the reference desk and asked if we had some headphones we could lend him. I told him that we don't have headphones to lend, but we do sell them for $1.50.*  He didn't have any money with him, so he asked if he could owe me.  Obviously, this is not a precedent I want to establish, but I've let regular patrons owe me for things in the past (one guy paid me back $.25/week for a fax I sent for him), so I decided to give this guy a break and some headphones.

I had him write me a IOU with him name, the date and what he owed, and I taped it to the counter.

He came back a few days later with the money he owed, and a special thank you treat in the form of an Israeli coin.

Apparently, and this is just information from the internet so it may be total garbage, this is an Israeli Lirot, which was issued on the 15th anniversary of the Bank of Isreal.  The three pomegranates are the symbol of Isreal, and someone is selling one on eBay for $.99!

I'm not entirely sure what I'm going to do with this new treasure, but I do actually have a collection of international currency that I look at every now and then, so I guess this will just go in the pile.

My next adventure was not nearly as exotic, but much more practical.

At my library (and many other libraries), we have very little money and/or staff so we rely on volunteers to do most of our shelving.  One of our volunteers had noted that the shelves in one section of the library were pretty full, and she actually couldn't shelve any more books there without shifting things around.   Since I hadn't looked through that particular area in a while, I went to see if there was anything that wasn't really getting checked out that we could discard.

I found a few books that were falling apart, and in one of them I found $5!  The book hadn't been checked out in three years, so that money had been sitting there all that time just waiting for me to weed the collection (yet another reason to use your local library).  I'm going to spend it on a peanut butter and jelly cupcake from the place around the corner from my house, and then put the rest into my piggybank.
Maybe more than one....

*Other libraries I've worked at have lent headphones, which would often get stolen, break, we would have to spend time cleaning them (gross), etc.  Conclusion: not worth it and as much as I hate waste and cheap things, very few patrons can't afford $1.50 for something that they can keep.

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