Saturday, June 30, 2007

Rootin' Tootin' Coin Roundup

Today we had a rootin' tootin' coin roundup. That means we gathered up all the spare change that was rattling around in the Large SUV and the kitchen cabinet change-holder thingy inside the Mansion. Not that it was a custom-made cabinet feature or anything-- just a plastic container that I dump change in when I've forgotten to take it out of my pocket. HH doesn't contribute. He actually SPENDS his change. Not us. Not unless we are in line at Sonic and it looks like they're going to bring out the drink before it's our turn at the window, and we want to give exact change because HELLO if we wanted to give a tip, we would have pulled into one of those order/menu slot thingies.

We have been planning the roundup for over a week. I told the boys that if they gathered up all the change and rolled it, I would let them split it and spend on fireworks. But being spoiled, unmotivated children of today's generation, they put it off. Today I told them I was going to do it myself, and they would get nothing. #1 jumped right in. He took a bowl from the clean pile in the dish drainer (have I mentioned that we don't have a dishwasher?) and hoofed right out to the LSUV for harvest. #2 son lay on the couch, playing his Nintendo DS Lite. "No. I don't care. I have money. I don't need it." Well, whoop-de-doo! Ain't that big talk for a little boy? So we counted and stacked and rolled, my firstborn and I. He took the car change, and I took the Mansion change. I told him from the start that he would not get it all. I told him he could have half, and I would take half.

Near the end, we ran short of a few coins to complete a roll. We needed 13 pennies. I sent #1 to the dresser in my bedroom, thinking HH had laid a pile of change from his pocket there overnight. HH was out front, scrubbing his 1980 Olds Toronado pimpmobile. The boy came back with 13 pennies. I made him leave dime in their place. What HH doesn't know won't hurt him. Oh, and then I asked #1 what he did with the wheat penny I found and gave him. "Umm...I think I put it in one of those rolls." Yeah. There were six rolls of pennies. I wasn't going through them. Bye, bye, wheat penny. We hardly knew ye. Then we needed eight quarters. Again, I gave the boy two dollars, and sent him to HH's stash. He came back with the two dollars. "I think they're all bicentennial quarters or something. And you know...I think those pennies were ALL wheat pennies." He dashed to the table. Yep. HH should thank the Gummi Mary that we ran short of penny roll papers momentarily. So back went the 13 pennies. And I sent #1 back to get my dime, too. So then we had to scrounge for 13 pennies and 8 quarters again.

We had already called upon #2 son for two nickels to complete our nickel-rolling needs. He was reluctant until I promised him a dime. That changed his attitude. He thought he came out ahead in that deal. The next option was to send #1 out to ask HH for the change in his pockets. He had nine pennies. He told #1 to go to his basement vault room and get his John Deere coin-counting conveyor belt thingy. #1 came back upstairs and ripped the innards out of it. There were NO pennies. But there were 11 quarters, so we helped ourselved to eight. We tried #2 son for the pennies, but he had none. Then I opened up the cabinet, and one lay right in front of my nose. About the same time, #1 shouted, "There's one on the floor!" So now we only needed two. Yeah. It's like it was a matter of life and death to find two pennies to complete a 50-cent roll.

#2 son was back on the couch. I told #1, "Watch this. Hey, that's gonna be A LOT of money when we get done. If we could only find just TWO MORE pennies, we could count it. Someone's going to be sorry he didn't help." #2 son jumped up. "I didn't know you needed help! I can help now! And I can get half of the money." Pin, meet bubble. "No. You said you didn't need the money. There's no way you're getting half. But if you can find two pennies, I'll give you some of the money." He rushed to the front door. "Where's my other flipper?" Then he ran out to the garage. In 30 seconds, he was back. "Here they are. Two pennies. And that's only from the front under your seat." Who knows what else is out there. But we were done.

Grand total: $37.50.

I told #2 son that if he could count it, he could have one fourth. He did OK with the two rolls of quarters, two rolls of dimes, and two rolls of nickels. It was the seven rolls of pennies that stumped him. He kept getting $37 or $38. I finally told him to count just the pennies. On the third try, he got it. I said, "Now how much is one fourth of that?" He's only nine, people. He just finished third grade. He thought for a minute, and said, "Eight dollars and fifty cents." Which is fairly close, a good ballpark guess. Then I told #1, who just finished sixth grade, and who I say has let his brain atrophy for a year, to divide it in half. It took him about 10 seconds to say, $18.75. I checked him on a calculator. Bingo! I thought of giving him a twenty, just to be done with it, but then I remembered that he owed me $5 for a fast-food lunch that he just HAD to have. So I told him to go to his billfold, get me $6, and I'd give him a twenty. He agreed. HEY! He got an extra $.25.

I told #2 son that I would give him $9. Yeah, I know that a fourth of the booty would be $9.38. But he doesn't know that, and anyway, all he did was find two pennies, so I though I was being generous. Then I saw that I didn't have small bills, so I said, "Bring me a dollar and I'll give you a ten. "WooHOO!" the boy screamed. #1 son and I rolled eyes at each other. We may need to teach the young 'un a bit more about money conversion.

Oh, and after taking all that money out of the John Deere silo, and running it LOUDLY up the conveyor belt so that it dropped into the coin stacking thingy again...#1 son picked it up and promptly dropped it, scattering coins all over the kitchen floor. #2 son even volunteered to help pick them up, what with his $9 windfall fresh in his mind.

Monday, I'll have to go cash in all that change. But now it will be MINE, by cracky. Even though I paid out the spoils already. Maybe that's where #2 gets his funny money ideas.


Stewed Hamm said...

Wait, when the coins scattered they were merely over the floor, and not in it?
I'm so confused... and just when I thought I had these preposition thingies figured out.

Redneck. Diva. said...

By the next to the last paragraph, my brain was smoking. All those numbers! I am on summer vacation, woman! If you are going to throw in a math lesson, warn us for heaven's sake! I don't start Algebra until fall, so I am boycotting numbers altogether until August.

Hillbilly Mom said...

Humans lay IN the floor. Inanimate objects lay ON the floor. SHEESH! Is it so hard to learn about other cultures, Stew?

At least you know what lays IN the floor, and what lays ON the floor.

I'm putting you in charge of explaining things IN and ON the road to Stew. You can be Hillmomba's Minister of Prepositions. IF you have time, what with your busy college schedule coming up, and building that Ark by July 4th.

Redneck. Diva. said...

I will take the task in hand willingly - just don't ask me to count for him.

Hillbilly Mom said...

You won't have to count for him. He has ten fingers and ten toes, by cracky!

Or DOES he?

Stewed Hamm said...

Let's say I have fewer phalanges than our buddy Mark, who I've just learned can successfully count to twenty-one and a half.

Hillbilly Mom said...

I'll take your word for it.

As long as you don't show me how a one-armed man counts his change.

Stewed Hamm said...

on the table, I assumed... why, you know a better way?

Word Verification: hilgzn - "Hill-Gazin" 1)Staring at hills, but not trying to be rude about it. 2)Stopping by this blog to see if your comments have been moderated yet. "I'm not here to read the new posts, I'm just Hill-Gazing the comments."

Hillbilly Mom said...

That question came from an old joke that some of my high school buddies told me at the drive-in long ago. The way a one-armed man counts his change does not involve a table, but a zipper and another appendage.

Thank the Gummi Mary that they had both arms and did not have to demonstrate it for me.