December 17, 2006

Money. It's a Hit.

Money rocks, but cash is a drag. I'm a debit card kind of girl. It's the best of all worlds: living on a cash budget but not having to carry cash. I don't even want to think about life before it.

Using my debit card, I end up with a managable pile of receipts, neat pieces of paper I stash in one of three places until it's time to compile them to update our financials for the month. Those little receipts are individually input in the computer and voila! I know where the money went.

But using cash? I end up with bits and pieces everywhere. A $7.86 purchase? A tolerably tidy $10 bill becomes two one dollar bills, one dime, four pennies and a receipt.

The pennies end up jingling around in my pocket or the bottom of my purse. From there they make their way to the olive dish that sits atop the dresser where I empty my pockets each evening and fill them each morning. Why do I keep my pennies in the olive tray? Why not? Once they hit the olive tray, they can consider themselves out of circulation. I rarely pick them up again. The bottom of my purse is also a penny graveyard.

I've often thought of how nice it would be were pennies to fall out of favor. Every purchase would round to the nearest nickel. Could any sane person object?

Real coins, and by that I mean anything that is not a penny, go into my Poker Can which sits next to the olive dish on my dresser. When the Poker Can fills up as Poker Cans are wont to do, the whole lot is transferred into the Super Poker Can. This coinage system is only two years old. I'm not sure what I'll do when the Super Poker Can overflows.

Neat storage of bills in purse or pocket is another issue. I like my bills orderly and neat, denominations collated with all heads facing the same direction. That takes effort. Not to mention paper money is far from sanitary. It's the nature of the beast, trading from hands that have been god-knows-where doing god-knows-what into other hands with a similar history and so on and so on. It's a germfest out there, people.

I know, I know. I should be grateful to have money to spend, no matter what form. Even when it's pennies. Truly I am. Yet I am equally as grateful for my debit card, without which life would be less organized, less efficient and germier. Long live the self swipe!



SassyFemme said...

I would be totally lost without my debit card. I very rarely carry cash any more. When I do carry it, I go through it far too fast. I'm not good about entering the debit receipts, though. I usually just scan the online bank statement, and then enter them at some point every couple of weeks... which drives Fran insane.

Anonymous said...

Debit, like the Metra is the only way to fly.

My poker can (pennies included) is routinely raided by one lovely daughter.

Anonymous said...

lol great post and I couldn't agree more on the pennies issue!! I have a similar system to yours with the coins on the dresser and the Poker can...only my poker can holdings are routinely lost at poker games!!!

Gina said...

I use my debit card, but sometimes I get paranoid that someone is going to steal my pin number.

And, nice Pink Floyd reference in the title, babe.

On a totally different note, how is your mom doing?

Anonymous said...

Love the debit card!

The debit card is good!

I also love my spare change... I always deposit it in the large jar in the kitchen, when I have it. That change pays for gas all the way to and from Orlando, every summer for our vacations.

Anonymous said...

i too love my debit.
tho we had to go through some 'adjustments' as Ferris got his first debit card this september.
must learn to check balance...frequently.
sooo, you've got a poker jar eh?
my gamblin' wife will want you to bring that along for sure...

WenWhit said...

Pennies suck. Debit cards rule.

And Weese... tell the wife she can play a real poker player after she "warms up" with Suzanne...

KMae said...

Definately Debit Cards!
I just wish I had more in there.

agoodlistener said...

If we got rid of pennies, what would happen to K-Mart's 88...hey--there's no "cents" sign key on the keyboard anymore. There used to be one on a typewriter, remember? Something's going on here--they're plotting to get rid of pennies. It's just that the plot is unfolding very very slowly.

Leslie said...

Hi! I found you by way of Gunfighter's blog.

I love my debit card, too. I rarely carry cash, but when I do, I store my bills just like you - "denominations collated with all heads facing in the same direction." My daughter scarfs up all my change for her piggy bank.

Elizabeth said...

Using your debit card is not necessarily the prudent thing to do. It’s easy. I love it but if someone rips off your bank account you will have a much harder time getting your money than if someone uses your credit card. Even though banks have the same $50 rule, it’s much harder convincing a bank you didn’t make a charge, plus, your money is gone as opposed to your credit line on a card.

The best thing to do is use a credit card that you pay off every month like a debit card then only use your debit card at your bank ATM and NEVER use your debit card for an online transaction.

We use our debit cards and Maxine claims nothing will happen because, apparently, the universe is looking out for us. I’d like to switch to the above scenario soon, though.

Uh...Gina called you 'babe'. Straight girls have a thing for you.

scout said...

Totally with you on the debit card front, and so pleased to hear about your facing of bills in order of denomination. Any sane person should recognize that need.

We have similar pennies vs. other coins receptacles. The pennies go into an obelisk-shaped souvenir cocktail glass from the Luxor, and other coins go into a nameless jug. Best of all, when the containers start to overflow, Sporks rolls them and takes them to our bank to convert them back into real dollars!

moggiemomma said...

debit cards are fab - however i never use mine as debit...always as credit...and i don't even like using it in delis (they swipe without you having to sign or put in a pin)... identity theft via debit is all too prevalent... but i do agree about the pennies issue... totally frees up the wallet!

Pam said...

Have a good Xmas.

dylan said...

This is so awesomely true. I love it. Debit all the way. My favorite thing about debit, it can be used online, and I love to online shop, whereas cash, I must actually go out and buy something!