Sep 13, 2012

Guest Blogger: Benjamin Franklin - Money Musings of a $100 Bill

Hey readers, we are going to try something new.  I'm going to be sharing some posts by a Guest Blogger, our friend Ben.  We'll get to take a look at money from the perspective of a $100 bill.  Don't hesitate to share ideas or thoughts.  Also, feel free to chime in, argue a little or ask questions of old Ben.  He's an inanimate object and you can't hurt his feelings.  Here it goes...


It has been a wild ride.  I was born in the year 1996.  It’s funny how different I am than these humans that carry me around.  My date is printed right on my face.  Humans get so wrapped up in appearance.  They would never display their birth date.  In fact I have been spent on cosmetics 653 times, but that is a side note.  

Back to my story, I was one of the first bills of my kind, totally redesigned for 1996.  I am practically a relic at this point.  The average life expectancy of a Benjamin is 7.5 years.  Today is my 16th birthday.  The first memory I have is of a press cutting me away from friends and then sending me through some sort of roller coaster that left me stacked up.  I actually thought I was Benjamin Franklin back then.  It was an honest mistake and I’ll explain why.  I was cut from a sheet of bills that look identical to me but I had no knowledge of this situation.  After seeing nothing but bright lights I was placed directly next to an identical bill.  As you know, my face has a rendering of Benjamin Franklin and on my reverse is an image of Independence Hall.  As I was stacked with nearly identical bills all I could see was Independence Hall.  After seeing the bright lights and remembering nothing of my present situation I assumed that I was headed into the building to continue debate over the content of our country’s constitution.  It felt like a dream as I could never quite get closer to the building.

I realized the error of my thinking when some time later I left the Federal Reserve vault and was  officially placed into circulation.  I wound up at a bank in Tulsa and was given as change to an auto mechanic.  Although I couldn’t recount every person I’ve met and every wallet or purse in which I have resided, I remember that mechanic because he was the first to leave a fingerprint on my new surface.  I was torn from my lofty existence as Ben Franklin and thrown into the cold hard reality as cash.  My host crammed me into his wallet and I wound up with my first crease.  The man passed me along that very afternoon.  His wife yelled at him all the way from the bank to the electric company. She was furious that he had forgotten to pay the power bill.  She blamed him for embarrassing her in front of her friends when they shut the power down during her Tupperware party.  I have been the center of plenty of brutal arguments and I’ve been the focus of a few knock-down, drag out fights, but I’ve never heard someone scream as loud as that woman.  The man and I both breathed a sigh of relief when we left the car and had peace and quiet between the vehicle and the teller at the power company.  I was slipped into a drawer full of dirty, wrinkled bills and there I remained for three days learning the ways of the world.  More on that later . . .
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