Tuesday, January 18, 2005
I am running out of the house, and I am about 10 minutes behind schedule. Trying to catch the 9:15 a.m., and I slam the door shut. Yep, you guessed it! My purse was in the house with my keys. Great! I have no money for the bus and no keys to the house. The spare is at the parents house. So now what? I think for about 25 seconds, when I decide I have no other choice but to wake up the neighbor. Normally, it would not be a big deal if I knew she was also getting ready for work. Except, that my neighbor is an older lady about 300 lbs over the limit, so she is sofa ridden. Finally, after 5 minutes she comes to the door. When I explained my situation, she told me she did not have any money. However, she did have quarters. Sounds good to me. She explains to me how her 90 yr old mother had a piggy bank filled with quarters. I say thank you and run to catch the next bus which I see pass me by. Ten minutes later I get on the bus and hand over my $3 in quarters. The bus driver looks at my hand and asks "What is this?" He has got to be kidding. What the hell do you think it is? "Quarters", I answer. He looks at me with this face and says "No, these are not quarters." I could not believe I was having this conversation. I told him he has got to be kidding, and that last I checked his job was to drive me to Port Authority. He told me he was not going to accept the quarters. I explained to him that it was his legal obligation to accept payment so long as it is US currency, I was late for work, and last I checked he did not work for US Treasury. He told me "These quarters are fake!" Fake, so I have a 90 year woman who is counterfeiting quarters in the next apt. Great. He was nuts, and unless Franklin Mint told me these quarters are fake I was not getting off the bus. When I arrived at work, and was done telling the story to 20 co-workers. I began to think, I wonder why he thought these quarters were fake. So I looked at one. Hmmm, Looks old, seems heavy, 1940? I decide to check my trusted source that has never failed me once. Ebay! When I looked up 1940 quarters, I see that these are WWII quarters made of silver and sell for about $50. You could imagine my surprise when I realized I just paid $600 to ride the bus, and the worst part is I had to beg the driver to accept the $600.