This past week, however, I had a bit'o cash that I was using for breakfasts, lunches and occasionally dinners and tips. I'd started the week with $100 and by Friday I was down to $2. Yeah, I really need to watch how I spend it.
Heather and I went to 7-11 Friday night to pick up a 2 liter of Diet Pepsi which cost $1.89. I gave the cashier my last two bills and she proceeded to examine them as though I were up to something sneaky. Then a look came over her face reminiscent of the face that I wold have when I changed my infant son's diaper.
I thought to myself, "Oh great. I didn't even glance at the bills. I'll bet someone drew a dick on one of them or something."
She finished her scrutinizing and then said to me, "I can't accept this," and handed the bill back to me.
I took it and looked the face over to see what was wrong. At first it seemed just fine, but then I twigged to what was fishy. It wasn't a dollar bill. It was this (minus the writing I added to avoid jail time – click for bigger):
A Silver Certificate from 1957! I was shocked! I have no idea when it was given to me as change, but man I was tickled! I've never been so glad to have had a diligent counter clerk before in my life! That bill had been circulating for 49 years! I think it's the oldest paper money that I've ever had in my possession. Sure, it probably sat around for awhile during those 49 years, but still!
Here's the other bill so you can compare the faces without cracking your own wallet (same stuff applies on the clicky and jail avoidance):
I told the cashier that it was fine and I would pay for the soda with my debit card. She was still looking at me like I was trying to pull a fast one. Yeah lady, counterfeiting 'ones' is the fast track to financial freedom and acceptance within the Mob.
I have no idea if the bill is worth more than a dollar, or worth even a dollar – it does still state that it "is legal tender for all debts, public and private" – but that doesn't really matter to me. I'll be happy to hold on to it.
Also, of course, Wikipedia has an entry about Silver Certificates here. It's an interesting read.