Sunday, April 13, 2008

Two Cents

Last night I bought a Fillet-O-Fish, a large fries, a large Coke and some pies at the McD's near my house. Two separate purchases because the guy at the counter punched in my meal without the pies. For both purchases the digits shown at the machine were round. With zeros at the back. It was kinda weird actually. The joy of paying the bill actually lies in scouring through pockets and wallets to beat the guy or the girl at the counter.

"Wait. I have 7 cents!"

"Aww... 2 cents short."

"Hey, I have 6 cents. Aww... Too late. Now I have lots of 1 cent coins."

"One. Two. Three. Hey, you have one cent?"

I'm going to miss those moments now.

The government is currently promoting the rounding up or down for everything. No more 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8 or 9 ending the digits in your receipt. You will only see 0 or 5. 1 cent is still valid for the time being but will be phased out. Anyone know when?

I think I'm going to miss a lot more than competing with the fast food guy on who can put 1 cent coins on the counter faster.

Remember back then in school the Maths teacher asked us to trace coins on papers and cut them up and paste them into books according to the given values? 1 cent coin got some sort of "special treatment" - I traced the coin with my brown pencil colour. "Because the coin is brown." (Bronze, actually). I only use my pencil for 5 cent, 10 cent, 20 cent and 50 cent coins.

And remember when we used to have competitions between classes? The "1 Cent Coins" competition. I don't know what other people call that. Classes compete with each other in collecting 1 cent coins. The class with the highest number of coins collected win some prize. The collected coins go to the school. Another twist is the collected coins will be used to create or decorate structures.

I guess kids don't do that in school anymore. So, phasing out the coins maybe is a good thing to do. Rounding up or down price perhaps is a good practice. There are many people who wants to avoid the hassle created by 1 cent coins.

I guess the coin boxes at the McD's counter will have to wait a bit longer to fill up after all 1 cent coins are phased out.

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