Ever think about what happened to all of those Sacagawea dollar coins that got minted in the early 'aughts? Rumor is that a good portion of them were locked away in storage due to the coin's unpopularity. Thanks to the the failure of the quasi-quarter Susan B.'s and the general ease of use of the good ol' dollar bill, I was fairly well convinced that I'd never see one. Remembering the fistfuls of coin you get for spending a five quid note in England, I can't say as I was terribly disappointed. No seriously... it's the Brits smallest bill, and it's worth close to $10.00. Worse, I think they went out of their way to ensure that their coin denominations match their weight standards. Three pounds of change feels like it three pounds in the pocket, and that's just crazy. That said, I'm not a big fan of the base-denomination-as-coin concept, though I had wondered from time to time whether I'd ever get to see one of the new gold dollars.
I assure you it was a passing fancy.
Well, I don't need to wonder any longer. On Tuesday, I used a $20 bill to buy a 4 trip Charlie Card (why did they name a transit pass after someone who was lost forever in the subway?) for $5 out of one of the spanky new machines. The machine spit out the card, and then proceeded to vomit my change in the form of 12 Sacagaweas and, just as an added dig, 3 Susan B.'s. It was kind of like winning at the slots, except with a deep-seated feeling of WTF?? replacing the winning euphoria.
I've spent them at this point, but it required things like joking with the young woman who made my au lait about the T's infernal plans and later stopping to explain to the parking garage attendant what the coins were and how they had been issued from the machines downstairs.