What do you do when you see a penny on the ground?
You walk right by it. Of course you do – if you think about it, the risk of injuring yourself while you’re bending over just isn’t worth it. You’re no spring chicken these days, and the odds of your back going out while you’re down there are a lot higher than they used to be. If you’re a kid, then sure, it might be worth it to pick up that penny. But for an old-timer like yourself, it’s probably best to just leave it where it lies.
Now let’s think about something for a minute here. I was one of those kids that took Algebra in 8th grade, so yeah, I’m pretty good at math.
Because sometimes you stumble upon a juicy quarter, let’s assume that you walk past about 50 cents every month. So over your entire lifetime, how much change do you walk past that you could pick up if you wanted to?
Let’s do the math. Let’s see here…carry the 1, divide by 11,000, square root that number, then plot it on the y axis…yes there we go. $480. Not bad, huh?
But you walk past a lot of that money don’t you? You just leave it on the ground because it’s not worth the trouble. Sure, you’ll pick up a quarter, but a good chunk of that 480 bucks comes from pennies and dimes and nickels. And you just leave it on the ground!
I heard of a guy once, who started with a paperclip – and though hundreds of trades, was able to end up with a new house. I don’t know if that story is true or not, but the next time I see a penny on the ground, I think I’m gonna pick it up. Just this morning I found one that was minted in 1997.
You can have it if you want. I’ll trade you for a paperclip.
But that^s just me.