Sunday, December 11, 2011

A Stack of Quarters

Sometimes I stop and ponder simple things.  Maybe it's because I'm getting older. Or maybe it's because I don't have a "life" so it leaves me plenty of time to spend on pondering simple things.  Either way, I'm sure it would make a long-dead Chinese philosopher proud.

Today, I was playing with a stack of quarters (coins) and thinking about how I perceive the value in them.  My financial situation is fair at the moment, but follows a predictable wave and trough pattern with each bi-weekly payroll cycle.  On pay day, it's just a stack of quarters.  By the second week however, it's my next cup of coffee and snack.  When I was laid off a few years back, and unable to find a job, that stack of quarters was precious. I looked at it like a crash survivor would look at the last bottle of water on an isolated island.

It's still, and has always been, just a stack of coins.  Their intrinsic value had never really changed.  My value of them however changed greatly.  It still changes, just not as wildly.

After that thought had run its course, I looked around the room to assess what other material objects fell into this strange bucket of perspective.  My TV.  My clothes.  My blankets.  But what about family and friends?  Yep.  And as absurd as this might sound, and impossible to believe, it's true.  It's true for you as well.  Here's an example...

You say good bye to your parents after dinner.  You kiss your kids good night.  You let your dog outside.  You do your routine things.  But the second life crosses things up and you almost lose one of them, suddenly, immediately, they become incredibly more precious and valuable.  Any parent who has panicked while searching for their child in a crowded place knows damn well what I'm talking about.  After any perceived threat to the stability of your bond with those you love has occurred, your value of their well-being, their existence, their love, their presence is magnified millions of times.

Is it really just a stack of quarters?

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