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How Far Would You Go To Pick Up a Penny?

by J. Money on Wednesday, April 11, 2012

found penny on ground

Well, I survived the Bachelor Party!  My liver isn’t too happy with me right now, but I made it back safely and all in one piece :)  And I actually *remember* it all too, imagine that?  I must be getting smoother in my old age… haha…

I was gonna come on here and tell you about all the crazy and wild stuff we did over the weekend, but then I realized this was a *financial* blog and only part of the trip really had to do w/ money ;) But you’re not missing out on too much anyways, I only went to jail 2 times for public nudity, nothing new, haha… j/k (maybe).

Something that DID occur, however, was coming across a TON of unwanted coins all over the place for some strange reason. It was as if the people of Charleston were so wealthy that they had no need for any of that “worthless” money, and just tossed it out whenever they came across it.  It was quite a thrill for someone like me who can appreciate a free shiny penny!  And in some cases, even a quarter! (Though I did *not* pick some of those up, as you’ll see in a bit… *shiver*).

It all got me thinking though, about the places and people who like picking up these coins in general.  Like, are they usually older?  Younger?  Poorer? And what about *where* these awesome coins are found? Would you pick them up in the streets? What if they were crowded? Or what if you’re with your friends? Do all these factors come into play, or are you 100% gungho one way or the other? These are the things I think about while on vacation ;)

Since I don’t know what YOU would do in any of these situations (yet), I thought I’d share a list of observations I have for myself so far. It goes something like this:

  • I ALWAYS pick up coins on the sidewalk – no matter what denomination.
  • I don’t do it for the money, but rather for the curiosity (I like to see how old they are, and imagine them being kicked around for decades at a time!)
  • The older/more beat up the coin, the faster I’ll go to pick it up before a friend or stranger does so in front of me – that’s the worst! ;)
  • I rarely pick up coins in the street, for fear of being hit by a car.  Though this weekend I kicked around an old penny, and then searched for a good 60 seconds to find where it went cuz I didn’t want it to beat me! (The streets were clear, but my mind wasn’t after a tasty old fashioned)
  • I never EVER ever pick up coins in bar bathrooms – ewwww!!!!  And this weekend was a great test for that too as I came across a brand-new looking quarter right there starting up at me while I was peeing! Hah! It was at that second when I thought I should blog about it when I got back too ;)
  • Whenever I see dollar bills on the ground, I always think someone’s trying to prank me.  And I look around every single time to see if there are any cameras, or people watching me, and only THEN do I pick it up and try and be smooth about it all.  Even if I’m the only one around – which actually makes it worse, cuz then I REALLY think someone is up to something! (Quick side note: I once found a ziploc bag stuffed with dollar bills outside my car door. The parking lot was completely barren when I was there, so I couldn’t find the original owner even if I tried, but I can tell you I was pretty jittery for a good 48 hours afterward. What if it belonged to some drug dealer??)
  • My dad once told me that if a bird poops on your head, you get good luck. That happened to me twice in one day when I was 7 at the zoo, and 15 mins later I found TWO shiny quarters on a stump! I’ve believed in it ever since.
  • He also told me if I ever stole pennies from a wishing fountain, I was a horrible person.  I didn’t think there was a need to test that one out ;)
  • I always thought it would be cool to keep a life-long “counter” of all money I’ve ever found.  I guarantee it would be in the hundreds, if not thousands over time.
  • One of the best places EVER to find money is at theme parks.  Specifically, any place there’s water (like those lazy river kinda attractions).  Back in the day I used to scavenge those places for hours and hours at a time finding things on the floor that fell out of people’s pockets… I once found 0ver 10 half dollars in one spot!  That was an incredible day as a 13 year old ;) We also found gold rings down there, but always returned those to lost and found.
  • I prefer finding nickels on the ground over dimes -  I think cuz they’re bigger?

I find all of this stuff pretty fascinating :)  You’re probably not shocked, I know – haha… How about you  though?  Do you pick up coins on the ground no matter what?  Or does the whole thing disgust you? (w/ the germs and all that?)  Tell us all your secrets below so we can laugh learn all about you! No shame in any of your preferences.

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(Photo by intotheforest)


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{ 64 comments… read them below or add one }

1 maria@moneyprinciple April 11, 2012 at 5:55 am

I usually pick up coins from the pavement (sidewalk) but rarely find any. As to bird-poo on your head, regretfully in my case it is just shit, really. Glad you had a great party!

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2 Sense April 11, 2012 at 7:03 am

I can’t pick up pennies, ever since seeing this HI-larious sketch: http://www.comedycentral.com/video-clips/zpuyqq/upright-citizens-brigade-ass-pennies

I freakin love it, but every time someone mentions picking up pennies…

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3 Frugal Fries April 11, 2012 at 7:18 am

I never pick up pennies, but I will pick up every nickel, quarter and dime in sight. I don’t know what my beef with the penny is, but I just can’t motivate myself to take the plunge.

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4 Michelle April 11, 2012 at 8:15 am

I only usually pick it up if it’s a quarter. I’m lazy.

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5 Brian April 11, 2012 at 8:19 am

I’ve said it before but I tend to almost always pick up any change i see on the ground (unless there is a safety issue). I put this money is a jar and once a year donate to the Ronald McDonald house. I figure I might aswell put the change to good use (even if it is only a few dollars some years).
As far as paper money, my old lady finds that on the ground all the time. We just found $5 walking into a Walmart this week, paid for the dishsoap we need!

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6 Andrew from FabulousSavings April 11, 2012 at 8:38 am

I’ll pick up anything upwards of a dime, anything less doesn’t seem worth it to me!

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7 Alexa April 11, 2012 at 9:50 am

When I was little and my mom would take us to McDonalds and she would park on the side with the drive threw and we would run up there (if there went any cars) and pick up all the coins! Talk about a gold mine for young kids! My biggest find was $20 at the grocery store; it was just there, in the middle of the aisle. I picked it up and ran!

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8 Laura Brown April 11, 2012 at 9:50 am

I do pick them up – and I’m teaching my 5 year old to do the same thing. However, I have to watch him – one time he picked up a penny we found in a parking lot, and he put it in his mouth! Gross! But, he does save his money, and rarely spends it (mostly because we don’t make him). He’s got about $40-$60 right now, and occasionally we count it. We should probably roll the coins and get him a bank account, but right now, his piggy banks hold it all just fine (with some spare room).

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9 Nate St. Pierre April 11, 2012 at 9:54 am

This is probably the best thing I’ve read all week. :)

I don’t think I every stop to pick up change, and in fact usually when I get pennies as change, I leave them in a little pile on the next shelf, garbage can, window sill, or whatever I see. Exactly for people like you, I guess!

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10 Ryan April 11, 2012 at 9:55 am

I pick them up, as I’m not opposed to free money… The last coin I found was a nickel in a pile of cigarette butts outside a store. I Purelled big time after I picked it up and that nickel still sits on the floor of my car!

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11 Jessi April 11, 2012 at 9:57 am

“I always thought it would be cool to keep a life-long “counter” of all money I’ve ever found.”

Ha, I totally do this! Cuz I’m a complete geek… But I definitely write it down when I find money, and now that I’m using Mint I’ve created a category called “Found Money” and just list it all in there. I think it will be cool to look back on it when I’m 50 and be like “Look how much free money I found!”

I also keep track of how much I win (or lose, as the case may be) when I gamble for the same reason. It is fun when the total is positive, and helps keep me in check when it’s negative.

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12 Trinnie April 11, 2012 at 10:04 am

Yeah, I totally don’t pick up spare change. I freak out thinking about how dirty the money could be, especially when it’s on the sidewalk or street. Vinny, my 5 yr old, however, picks up coins everywhere! and even though we never carry cash, I always have $1 tucked away. My grandpa told me years ago, that if I had $1 saved, I was never broke. Wise words!

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13 Norman April 11, 2012 at 10:10 am

I would have picked up the quarter and washed it off when I washed my hands. Money is dirty no matter where it is.

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14 Jen @ Master the Art of Saving April 11, 2012 at 10:32 am

I probably would pick it up about 20% of the time. It really depends on where I am and who’s around. If my daughter is with me, I always encourage her to pick it up for her piggy bank. Never, ever have I picked up anything in bathrooms just because it grosses me out. Money is dirty already, so I don’t think ill of people who do—so long as they wash their hands. :-)

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15 LB April 11, 2012 at 10:37 am

I usually pick up coins (no matter the denomination) on sidewalks and in streets. I usually won’t pick up coins in a bathroom or someplace like that unless it was just recently cleaned and I can wash it and my hands for a good 15 minutes, then I think about it. Otherwise picking up coins has always been a habit. Hey it’s free money and I don’t lose anything by picking them up, only gain money. :)

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16 Marianne April 11, 2012 at 10:41 am

I pick up any and all coins I see. My husband will not unless it’s a dollar or more. Maybe he’d pick up a quarter but I doubt it. He makes fun of me for it but money is money.

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17 bogofdebt April 11, 2012 at 10:44 am

I pick up everything within reason. I don’t like the truly icky ones but most change is fair game. I’ve always been like this but it’s got a special meaning now: all the change that we save is going to help pay for our wedding.

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18 J. Money April 11, 2012 at 10:49 am

I love this – so many like minded people here! :)

@maria@moneyprinciple – Hah! I’ll have to share some of my luck w/ you then ;)
@Sense – Ahahahaha…. omg that was great!! Hahaha… “you think you’re better than me? You handle my Ass pennies!!” Haha.. great one friend, wow. What a way to start the morning :)
@Frugal Fries – You’re too good for the pennies?? You are, aren’t you! :)
@Michelle – What if it’s in the bar bathroom’s floor? ;)
@Brian – Wow, that’s crazy lucky!
@Andrew from FabulousSavings – You’re not the only one it seems too.
@Alexa – HAH! Haven’t heard that one before but it’s a brilliant idea! I’ve totally dropped coins at drive-thrus – good one!
@Laura Brown – That’s what I hear about kids – they putt all kinds of crazy things in their mouth! I’m gonna have to watch our soon-to-come boy too, I can only imagine :)
@Nate St. Pierre – HAH! Well keep on doing it my friend, it gives people like me a fantastic day! :)
@Ryan – Haha… that’s pretty hardcore, I like it.
@Jessi – Awesome! How much do you have in there right now? In the “found” department? There used to be a few blogs that tracked it for a while, but they’ve seemed to dissapear over the years… maybe you should start one up or add it to the one you already have :)
@Trinnie – I love your grandpa! Totally true :)
@Norman – You have a great point there, actually :)
@Jen @ Master the Art of Saving – I can’t wait to teach my son to pick them up too! And have a cute piggy bank and all, woohoo!
@LB – Damn straight on that!
@Marianne – You should tempt him by placing a quarter around places you go and see what happens ;) Then, when he picks it up, be like “See! It’s exciting, isn’t it!” Haha…
@bogofdebt – Good one! Def. makes it more rewarding when you have a goal like that in the end :)

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19 Fern April 11, 2012 at 11:12 am

Speaking as a Pagan and Witch – some of ‘us’ scatter coins to get rid of bad luck, etc. Which can make picking up found coins problematic.

OTOH, I got 2 “Wheatie” pennies and two real silver dimes in change this week. So there is that extra reason to pick up loose change (the pennies alone are worth 15 cents each).

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20 Meg April 11, 2012 at 11:14 am

My husband makes fun of me for it, but I always try to pick up pennies! The only case where I won’t is if I’ll get run over in the process. (Busy street or big crowd of people, considering people almost run into me if I’m just standing somewhere….)

I actually feel bad for a while if I can’t pick up change, haha. I feel like its unwanted and I should give it a home & a purpose. Been like that since I was little! Right now I’ve got two containers, a HUGE one for just pennies and a smaller one for silver & bills. My pennies container is almost full…. And I’m wondering if I can part with them, since I’ve been saving for over five years now! (I should sent you a pic on twitter, J.!)

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21 Jessi April 11, 2012 at 11:17 am

@ J. Money – I’ve got about $54 right now, but it wasn’t all from coins. I got lucky and found a $20 in a parking lot when I was in college, and I’ve found a few other bills here and there, so they really help :-) Probably about $25 of it is just from coins though. I’ve been tracking this for a while, and they really do add up!

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22 Whiskey & Peaches April 11, 2012 at 11:28 am

I used to someone who was leaving all those pennies lying around! I hated carrying change or receiving change in general! So, I definitely was not one to pick up “silly” pennies in the street. However, once I challenged myself to fill up a change jar at the house – i’m constantly looking for and finding spare change! So, not only have I found a great way to save money, I’ve changed my perception of the penny!!

Coach

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23 Matthew Doyle April 11, 2012 at 11:29 am

I will pick up change if it is more then a penny. I really hate pennies. I am a little bit of a germaphobe, so I always feel like I need to wash my hand after I pick up coins.

When I was in high school we traveled for golf tournaments. When we got back to the airport we loved to stick quarters to the baggage claim turnstile with gum and watch people try to pick them up. I thought it was hilarious at the time, but I would be really mad if someone did that to me now.

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24 Nords April 11, 2012 at 11:32 am

When spouse was on active duty, her command did daily walks down the base’s military runways picking up small foreign objects that could get sucked into jet engines and damage them. After 18 months of daily practice at FOD walkdowns, even 25 years later she can still spot a penny at 10 paces during our daily walks.

If we’re parked at a fast-food restaurant, we’ll always walk by the drivethrough lane. It’s amazing how many people toss their change into the landscaping before driving off.

The most amazing sight of all came from our tour of a sewage plant. They filtered out all the metal objects from the “settling” tanks, and their drying racks were piled high with dozens of dollars in coins. Not, of course, that anyone would touch them without a HAZMAT suit…

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25 Jenn April 11, 2012 at 11:33 am

I pick up everything that I see, excepting those on the bathroom floor. I play roller derby and we practice at the skating rink 3 times a week. that’s pretty good for pocketing pennies. Especially on Sunday morning after they’ve had an all night skate… the kids throw change at people, and you sometimes even find dimes on those mornings!

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26 Stacey April 11, 2012 at 11:38 am

My kids usually beat me to any change on the ground (or I show them and let them do the work.) Once my 5 yr old agreed to help me pick up trash in an empty lot we own and he found $1. You can bet the 7 yr old was excited to help after that!
And once in a hotel walking to the elevator my husband and I found $100 bill on the floor a few yards from the elevator (around the corner.) When got into the elevator and there was another couple in there. We asked if they had just come from our floor. When they said, “No,” I said “Shoot, then that means you’re probably not the owner of this” and showed them the $100. That was a good find!

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27 HighOrderGuiltComplex April 11, 2012 at 11:47 am

A friend and I always walk during our breaks at work and pick up change. We find most of the change around parking meters. About once a year we go and eat Mexican food with all of the change we have found! I found 38 cents in my yard two days ago and added that to our “change” cup. I got laughed at once in a parking garage by a bunch of teenagers when I was picking up change off of some steps (almost 2 and half dollars worth, who is laughing now? :-) ). I am always looking down at the ground when I walk looking for change and I once walked into a long board sticking out of the back of a truck. I got a lump the size of a goose egg on my forehead and found no change :-)

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28 Cecil April 11, 2012 at 11:51 am

I ALWAYS do, except in the case when it’s a dirty environment like someone mentioned such as a bathroom. It’s almost disrespectful to leave them lying on the ground.

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29 LifeInTransition April 11, 2012 at 12:48 pm

I go through phases where I do it all the time or not at all. Right now I’m in the not at all phase, probably since I don’t really use cash anymore

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30 The Happy Homeowner April 11, 2012 at 1:22 pm

I do love to pick up change I find, and I’ve even left some of my own–for my 30th b-day, I did 30 random acts of kindness all day and one of them was to leave head’s up pennies all over one of the more popular city squares here. I’d like to think that I gave some people some good luck :)

BTW, thanks for sharing that you think about blogging while taking care of business…certainly an awkward yet hysterical thing to ponder!

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31 Cassie April 11, 2012 at 2:02 pm

I always pick them up. People may think I’m crazy, but I do it. It may only result in a penny or two most days, but the habit of looking at the floor periodically netted me $180 at a casino once ;)

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32 retirebyforty April 11, 2012 at 2:04 pm

I don’t pick up a penny anymore, but the Mrs. still does. If it looks old, maybe I would check and see if it’s a wheat penny. :) I usually nudge the coin with my foot before picking it up. Stupid kids with superglue…
I haven’t seen anything in the bar bathroom, I guess I don’t go out enough.

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33 Jenna, Adaptu Community Manager April 11, 2012 at 2:11 pm

I’m not much of a picker upper. Maybe because of the germs? And now I’m thinking about pranks to get you with involving dollar bills and a drug dealer…

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34 Brent Pittman April 11, 2012 at 2:11 pm

I also pick up pennies. I was encouraged that Bill Gross (PIMCO) still does too and he’s crazy rich.
If you have a fast food joint nearby, go early in the morning and there is always change by the drive in windows.

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35 ImpulseSave April 11, 2012 at 2:47 pm

I don’t really pick up coins except probably quarters. Honestly, I don’t really notice them. But now if I do start noticing them, I’ll leave them for you. lol

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36 Good Cents Savings April 11, 2012 at 3:47 pm

What an interesting thought! Considering the germ factor I just realized that I won’t let my daughter pick up pennies she sees on the ground because they’re “dirty”, but I will let her pick up trash at the beach and put it in the trash can (except for cigarette butts – gross! only on beach cleanup day when we’re wearing gloves.)

It’s got me thinking about the unintentional lesson there – “save the planet unless you can put the “trash” in your piggy bank”? Maybe it’s time to let her pick up the coins and start carrying hand sanitizer.

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37 Carrie Smith April 11, 2012 at 5:32 pm

My sister has always had this uncanny ability to find coins and money everywhere, ever since she was a little kid. I rarely ever see coins on the ground, but apparently they are all over the place. Maybe I need to start paying more attention!

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38 Allyson April 11, 2012 at 7:24 pm

This is a great post!! So glad to know I’m not the only nerd. My husband and I are in our fourth year of not only picking up every coin and bill that we find, but also putting all our findings into a special jar, so that we know exactly how much accumulated. The most we ever found in one year was $37and change. That was the year I found a $20 on the ground at RibFest. I’ve developed an eagle-eye for coins and bills. Once I spied a bill on the floor of the parking garage – WHILE I was driving and it was on the passenger side. It turned out to be a $5 bill.
The only time I exercise any restraint is at the metal detectors when entering the court house. There is TONS of change and sometimes bills on the floor, but I’d feel retarded stopping and picking it up in front of the security guards every day, and also I kind of feel it is “their” money and they are entitled to it. But I always note whether there are dimes or quarters or a bill, and I walk away secretly feeling cheated. :)

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39 Ryan April 11, 2012 at 7:37 pm

Gresat post J! In my bouncing career, I’d venture to say I’ve picked up just shy of $1,000 in unwanted change and bills of various other denominations ; ). You’d be amazed what you can find on the floor of a crowded bar if you look hard enough or are in the right place at the right time

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40 AverageJoe April 11, 2012 at 9:32 pm

I’ve never thought telling someone “may a bird poop on your head” would be appropriate. I’ll rethink that when we meet!

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41 SavvyFinancialLatina April 11, 2012 at 11:19 pm

I pick up coins all the time. It’s good luck right? :)

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42 Jennifer April 12, 2012 at 12:32 am

I always pick up change I find on the ground. The frugal nerd in me can’t leave it sitting there, even if it’s just a penny.

I find it fascinating that people say they don’t pick up coins because of germs. You know someone else will come along and pick it up, probably not wash it, then put it into circulation anyway. Think of how many people with dirty, nasty hands handle money? And paper bills? They hold even more germs that the coins do! I guess I don’t see the reasoning in thinking the money you find on the ground is really any more dirty that the pile of coins in your purse or pocket. But maybe that’s just me :)

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43 Evan April 12, 2012 at 10:13 am

“I once found a ziploc bag stuffed with dollar bills outside my car door.”

Not a drug dealer…that’s a stripper wallet lol

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44 m1nts April 12, 2012 at 10:23 am

I never pick up coins I find on the streets. I don’t know, I feel like they don’t belong to me so I can’t take it…
My sister does, and she has the best luck doing it, once we were on a bus stop waiting for our ride to school and she sat on a tree behind the bus stop, she found an envelope with $150, I didn’t notice she took it until we got to school, but she said she left a note with our home phone number in case someone came back and claimed the money. No one ever called.
(we were 14, I don’t think she meant harm)

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45 ivy April 12, 2012 at 12:53 pm

I’m guilty of dropping a coin and running right after it even when it landed underneath a lady with a skirt on. I also crossed a NY street twice just so I could pick up a shinny penny I couldn’t get the first time in fear I’d get hit by a taxi.

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46 J. Money April 13, 2012 at 11:45 am

Love hearing how all y’all work ;) This was a fun one!

@Fern – Woahhhh that would not be good! Never thought of bad luck pennies really, haha… thanks for sharing! :)
@Meg – Yes, do it! I want to see all your findings :)
@Jessi – Sweet! $20 is crazy too, sucks for whoever lost that one!
@Whiskey & Peaches – Awesome! Love your name there too – “Whiskey & Peaches” – that’s hot :)
@Matthew Doyle – Oh jeez, haha.. yeah – gum is nasty! I got some on my shoe the other day and it was driving me Crazzyyyyy… and in fact, it was at the same place where I saw that quarter laying on the ground! Haha…
@Nords – HAH! You guy have perfected the art of coin finding, I’m jealous ;) Never even thought about people throwing coins away at drive thrus??? That’s cuckoo!
@Jenn – And even better you’re a roller girl!! Haha…. sexy!
@Stacey – Hahahahhaah… and you know what? That may be a good trick to get your kids to keep helping in other areas too ;) Just drop a dollar on purpose places so they keep coming back for more! (or is that mean? I’m not a dad yet so don’t know! ;))
@HighOrderGuiltComplex – Haha oh man, that sucks… but you keep on doing it cuz it’s always worth it! :)
@Cecil – That’s what I say too ;)
@LifeInTransition – Oh man, I love cash. So much more real to me than credit cards/etc…
@The Happy Homeowner – Hey, you gotta do what you gotta do right? ;) Love that you did a 30 acts of kindness for your birthday too, I soooooo want to do that one day. Maybe I’ll make it this year’s birthday mission?
@Cassie – WOAH!! Now that is hot!!
@retirebyforty – Haha… kids are mean to us old farts sometimes ;)
@Jenna, Adaptu Community Manager – I’ll fall for it, so don’t film me!!
@Brent Pittman – Oh really? That’s pretty interesting about Bill Gross!
@ImpulseSave – There you go ;) I’ll thank you kindly, too.
@Good Cents Savings – Haha yes!! Maybe she’ll find enough to pay her college tuition one day ;)
@Carrie Smith – You two should have a challenge and see if you can figure out a way to beat her :)
@Allyson – Awwwww, well maybe you can make a pact with them that you’ll pick them all up and then share the proceeds w/ em? That way everyone wins! :) I do like your special jar too – I think I might give that a shot… I like seeing things add up over time!
@Ryan – I BET!!! Another great perk of your hustle, bro – I love it!
@AverageJoe – Haha, totally ;)
@SavvyFinancialLatina – Heck yeah it is! Though I’ve heard if it’s tails not to do it, but then if you give it to someone THEY get good luck – so I usually follow that thinking ;)
@Jennifer – I think you raise an excellent point actually, ALL our money is dirty!!
@Evan – HAH! Didn’t even think of that… and would be a lot less scared if she came knocking on my door to pick it up ;) (bow chicka wha wha!)
@m1nts – AWESOME!! I wonder what it was for?? And even more so – what your sis did with it? :)
@ivy – OH jeez, haha… just stay safe! :)

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47 Long April 13, 2012 at 3:36 pm

I usually always pick up coins. Mostly to deposit them into my coin bank (which I save up and then deposit into my credit union). I never pick them up from dirty places like restrooms. Gross!

As far as bills, my wife and I once found a $10 bill on the ground in Santa Barbara. It was very close to several banks/ATM’s so we took a moment to look around for someone who may have lost money. This was the same weekend of our engagement, so I didn’t want to take the time out to go to the police station to turn it in, nor did I want to keep it.

Since there is a large population of homeless people there, we kept an eye on one of them who appeared like he would not use it on booze or drugs. Over the course of two days, we noticed that he kept all of his belongings very organized and tidy. He kept to himself and passed the time by reading the daily paper in the McDonald’s. He never bothered anyone or solicited for cash like the young transients that hung out on the street.

We ended up giving the $10 to him so he could eat. He was exceptionally gracious and we felt pretty good about ourselves. Still do.

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48 Donnachloe April 13, 2012 at 11:55 pm

Sorry, but I just can’t do it! And I never wanted my son to do it either. Part of me worries that the coin is too dirty, but a part of me thinks that there is going to be some homeless person that needs it more, or maybe that it will be someone who gets a big thrill out of it – like you,
I guess!

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49 femmefrugality April 14, 2012 at 10:50 pm

Glad the party was fun! Money is one of the dirtiest things ever. Every time I touch a bill or coin I wash my hands. Because even if I’m not picking a penny up off the bar bathroom floor, that doesn’t mean it hasn’t been there! I do pick it up. Every time I see it. Free money? Yes, please.

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50 Melissa (Miss Lissy) April 15, 2012 at 2:19 pm

I did before I was pregnant – right now with the belly I don’t get low to the ground unless it’s really worth it. Oh and my brother found a 50 dollar bill under the deck of a hotel pool once. He was looking through the slots and saw a dollar bill and so he went down to get it and it turned out not just to be any dollar bill, but a 50 dollar one.

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51 Barb April 15, 2012 at 8:35 pm

I always pick up any money as long as it is a safe place to stop. In fact just a few minutes ago I found 3 quarters together in the parking lot of a hotel I am staying at (on vacation). :) All money is dirty but you can rinse it off if it makes you feel better.

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52 J. Money April 15, 2012 at 9:01 pm

@Long – What a great story! And idea – I like that :) And an excellent way to start out your engagement together too, well done.
@Donnachloe – Hehe, could be ;) Though I was thinking about it earlier today, and wondered if coins outside are actually CLEARNER than those in our pockets full of germs/etc, since at least it rains out there! Haha… when was the last time you washed your coins? ;)
@femmefrugality – Exactly – all money is dirty! I wash my hands all the time too, or at least put that hand sanitizer on… though I’ve been doing that with everything lately – seems I’m getting more freaked out as I get older :)
@Melissa (Miss Lissy) – Woahh, that’s awesome! And even more so that you’re pregnant ;) I forget – are you having yours earlier than us or are we having it first? Either way, we’re gonna be parents soon!! YAY!
@Barb – Hah! Look at that. And I guess you like reading blogs while on vacay too, eh? ;) Thanks for stopping by!

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53 MoneySmartGuides April 16, 2012 at 12:27 pm

I pick up coins all of the time, depending on where they are of course. Friends question why I do it and I always tell them, because it’s money! It many only be spare change, but it adds up over time. I just throw it into a jar and a few times a year, I go to the bank and deposit the money. It usually comes out to about $50-100.

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54 J. Money April 17, 2012 at 10:05 am

Nice! I’m a big fan of the jar method as well – for all my change, not just stuff I’ve found. It’s a great feeling unloading it all at the end! :)

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55 Nicole April 18, 2012 at 1:29 pm

Kind of off topic (was on vacation so I missed this post).
But I once read that Bill Gates makes so much money per second that it would technically not be worth the time it took him to stop and pick up a $100 bill if he saw it on the sidewalk.

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56 J. Money April 18, 2012 at 2:01 pm

OH jeez, haha… that is awesome :)

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57 aj May 1, 2012 at 9:40 am

When I was growing up, there was a nice old guy that lived right in town that always walked around looking for pennies. I used to throw some down on my walks so he could find them.
Now that I know he is long gone, my son & I are always looking and finding change. It is amazing what you might see if you just look down!

When I was in college, I could find enough money just walking across campus to buy a pop or candy bar by the time I got to the student union. And my roommate & I would search the couches & chairs in the student commuter lounge (when noone else was there) and always found money, lol.

Not long ago my daughter lost her $10 bill in Walmart…she had traced back over her steps and was unable to find it. She was very upset about losing it. But I told her that I was sure that she made someone else’s day…and maybe they really needed that money more than she did…Who knows?! But it nicer to think that you helped someone else out than to dwell on the fact that you were careless & lost all your money ;)

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58 J. Money May 2, 2012 at 10:54 am

Awwww I like that :) That’s a beautiful way of looking at it for sure. And poor old guy!!! How cute that y’all helped him out by leaving pennies around – that is so nice of you!!!

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59 Debbie June 6, 2012 at 9:21 pm

OMG! My friend referred this to me. Twelve years ago my friends father told me he use to keep a change jar. He started it on Jan 1st and would keep it until Dec 31st and then count it. I loved the idea and every year I have found over 100 dollars. The best places are drive-thru’s just pull a little away from the drive-thru so you can open your door and get it while they are completing your order. lol. I know this sounds crazy but one of the greatest places is at interestions there are so many accidents there and the police and ems dragged the injured out of their car while all along their change is falling out. Sounds Crazy but 20 of my friends are playing and I have yet to be beaten. It is now june 6th and I am already up to 120.00 call it OCD but I cant stand the kids at the school that i work at that just throw change in the hallway.Thank you so much for posting this article people just laugh but then again they are the ones asking to borrow money from me. LOL

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60 J. Money June 7, 2012 at 1:22 pm

AWESOME!!! Haha…. wow, you ARE good ;) And yes, a little crazy, but that’s okay – you’re completing your mission! I’m glad you found this post too – thank so much for stopping by :) Continue reading, yeah?

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61 Moola Mind July 4, 2012 at 1:07 pm

I just came across this post and it has to be one of the best posts I’ve seen in a long time. It reminds of “The Office” when Michael thinks he sees a quarter under Stanley’s car and get gum in his hair. That scene makes me rethink what everyone is thinking around me when I see change on the ground…. but I still go for it!

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62 J. Money July 4, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Haha… I haven’t seen that one yet!! But I LOVE The Office :) Glad you enjoyed the post my man, thx for stopping by!

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63 Debbie September 7, 2012 at 1:43 pm

I just went back, as I have saved this e-mail and on June 6th I posted my total was at around 120.00. Well it is only August 7th and I am 55.00 ahead of that. My new total is 177.00. I start mine on Jan 1st and end it on Dec. 31st. My husband tells me to get a “HOBBY” but this is the cheapest “HOBBY” i could find. LOL!

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64 J. Money September 11, 2012 at 4:14 pm

HAH! That is great :) Thanks so much for the update! And go tell your husband that at least your hobby makes money!! You’re a hustler, baby!

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