Tuesday, March 2, 2010

You and your filthy money

As a child, my Grandmother told me once to never put money in my mouth. I refrained from responding with “Who puts money in their mouth, crazy Grandma?” and instead said “Oh, Grandma. Why would I put it in my mouth when it clearly will not earn interest there?"

But grandma was right: Money is one of the dirtiest things in the world.

I was reading an article last month that indicated the flu virus and pneumonia can live on paper currency for seventeen days. And two physicians, Theodore W. Pope and Peter T. Ender of the Medical Center of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio identified a total of 93 different types of bacteria living on the bills, and two-thirds of the bills had at least one type. Proving that germs have been spending too much time listening to Puff Daddy (PDiddy? PDiddle? PDoody?) sing “It’s all about the Benjamins” because even germs like cold, hard cash.

I also learned from CNN that 90% of US bills have traces of cocaine. 100% of the bills collected from major cities such as Miami, Boston, and Detroit tested positive for cocaine. Even samples from smaller cities like Salt Lake City, Niagara Falls had over 60%. 

So not only is your money dirty, it also likes to party Amy Winehouse style.  And with the $12 Trillion dollar US debt, and ever fluctuating value of the US dollar, maybe Money should party before a package of Top Ramen outranks it in value.

And I saw a man at the gym holding his dollars in his teeth while he waited in line at the smoothie counter. Why not just lick the flu bug on your way to Pablo Escobar's? 

Further reason to never put your money where you mouth is. But at least this supports the reason I never carry cash. I will consider it my own health care reform by not passing out greenbacks that are sickly and also coked up. 

PS: Money, it is not your fault. I don't think you are entirely filthy. Just a little filthy. But I still love you. If I win the lotto, you and I and all your green friends can have a big bubble bath together.

106 comments:

singedwingangel said...

Ok I had heard the cocaine bit but ewwww on the germs and flu virus... bleeeechhh

My name is PJ. said...

"Why not just lick the flu bug on your way to Pablo Escobars?"

MWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

I shower with my money....everyone know baths, even with bubbles, are just a little filthy.

Mr. Charleston said...

Wow JennyMac. I just had this sudden insight as to why I've had so fewer colds, etc. over the last couple of years. Because I almost always use my debit card. Rarely any cash on me at all. Geez, I hope they don't find traces of coke on it.

mbkatc230 said...

"When it clearly will not earn interest there" - priceless. I have hand sanitizers at the front desk at our clinic. Not because of the doggie germs, but because the gals handle cash. They roll their eyes at "mom". I think I might print this out and pass it around at the next staff meeting. Kathy

Jules said...

Gross! Now I don't even want to touch money without gloves.....

Mommakin said...

So people really do that rolling around on the bed in a pile of money thing, perhaps???

Cybil said...

I have convinced my children that there is poop on money and they should never put it in their mouths. At their cousins 4th birthday a few weeks ago, one of the children went to their mom and said "K-Lo's mom says there is poop on this money." Sometimes they do listen.

the walking man said...

I have tried and failed. I took a thousand dollar bills and scraped them, the amount of coke I got from was less than than the cost of the nasal infection I got from huffing those bacteria.

Now I just burn the bills and huff the smoke. Which is why the wife is always asking me how I can burn through money so fast.

Slamdunk said...

Clever post JM. I am sure the guy who was holding the money with his mouth does not wash his hands after a restroom visit either.

For the past several years, I rarely use cash--instead preferring the plastic and paying off the balance every month. Thanks to the reminder in your post, I have another reason to have less green around the house.

SmartBear said...

Thanks for the first o' the mornin' laugh. I love me some money, but it doesn't earn me free airline tickets. This is why my travel rewards credit card is my BFF. We don't do bubble baths together, but I make sure to get her a nice christmas gift every year. Now I am going to go see if sniffing dollar bills makes me high...

Plentymorefishoutofwater said...

Fun post. I always thought it was a myth about the cocaine but maybe not. I always make sure I have at least £1 on me in case I want a chocolate bar.
*Read about my dating disasters at plentymorefishoutofwater*

Tamara Hart Heiner said...

ew. that is so sick. I never use cash, either. (except when hubby needs money. We confiscated his debit card for overdrafting four times last month.)

mo.stoneskin said...

Maybe dirty money is why Amy Winehouse has a drug problem? She was just enjoying sniffing the stuff one day and then...

Mom in High Heels said...

Yes, yes, yes! I hate touching money because I know it has germs all over it. I rarely touch US money (I mostly use my debit card), but in Germany many, many places (I"m looking at you IKEA) won't take debit or even credit cards (what is WRONG with these people?) so I have to carry Euro with me. Being as Euros are used in a bunch of countries, who KNOWS what's happened to it? Ack! And the coins! They smell crazy wierd to me. I'm afraid of them.

Simply Suthern said...

Maybe thats why money laundering has become so popular??

Anything Fits a Naked Man said...

Wow, that was pretty staggering! Money is FILTHY, glad I don't have a lot of it!!

My grandma was the same way about "money in your mouth." Also, she never let us hum in the kazoos at the dime store, nor try on hats at J.C. Penney (there could be LICE, for crying out loud!!).

ajm said...

I am a debit card girl, myself. I never carry cash. That also comes in handy when someone asks to borrow money -- I never have any.

JenJen said...

good gracious! Detroit? Not surprised. But since I am in Michigan I can only say that THIS is the reason money burns a hole in my pocket--it's high.

Jenn@ You know... that blog? said...

Yep, not the first time I've heard that, and I've been known to tell my kids to keep money away from their face. But really, if you touch it, it doesn't have to be the coin/bill that does it to you - just touching your eyes or mouth after having it in your hand is enough to make you sick. Or apparently coked up! Shocker!

I rarely carry cash anymore either!

Mandy's Life After 30 said...

That's why I carry around money's clean, angelic cousin - Antibacterial soap!

Linda said...

I prefer using my plastic but sometimes must use cash. I ALWAYS wash my hands after a use of cash. It is sooooo dirty! I had to count a pile of bills once at an gymnastics event and my hands were soooo filthy afterwards and who knows how many germs. Scrubbed em clean!

Eric said...

I like to handle ancient Roman coins, but I figure most of the bacteria have died by now. But, I just remembered that virus lacks mitochondria and can exist indefinitely, crud.

Simply Suthern said...

If you have ever put that debit card betwixt your lips, it's the same as kissing every over card slid through the readers as well.

Secretia said...

Probably a lot of one dollar bills have seen the inside of the panties of many a topless dancer too!

Secretia

Jessica said...

I guess I better stop eating it at meals then! :)

Shorty said...

I have heard this before, but tucked that germy info away in my psyche. I just realized, however, that I pay my son his allowance in cash. He loves counting his stack o' cash on a somewhat regular basis. Perhaps I should suggest a germ-x procedure take place during each initial exchange...

Taylor-Made Wife said...

I have never heardf about the cocaine found on money. That is so crazy. I used to be so bad about holding money in my mouth if I was trying to do something else. I'm glad to say that habit is kicked.

Herding Cats said...

You know, even after I hold money (especially coins) my hands feel nasty. Now I have your blog as proof that they really are. Ew.

Danielle said...

Great post, I've TOTALLY never heard about the coke thing, that is RIDICULOUS and amazing,, and hysterical the way you posted it too,,, Amy Winehouse style..

maybe the DOH should encourage the use of the debit card instead of cash.. hahaha

shelly said...

i am on the floor laughing!!!

ShellSpann said...

That's pretty damn disgusting!

Vodka Logic said...

I am so with you on this.. I read about the coke but not the germs.. thanks for the heads up and I am glad I got my shots.

Ma What's 4 dinner said...

Rehab centers all over the country are locking up their patients wallets.

:) I'm disgusted and amused all at the same time. Long live plastic!

Alex aka Ma What's For Dinner?
www.mawhats4dinner.com

The Vegetable Assassin said...

You know, despite not having any recollection of putting money in my mouth, I remember what sucking on a penny tastes like, therefore, I assume I must've tried it some time. GROSS!

I actually read that stuff about the cocaine. I wonder how many notes have stray STDs on them from being stuffed in strippers' g-strings?

blueviolet said...

So I'm not crazy for disinfecting my hands after handling money? Excellent!

The warrior in me said...

"Why will i put it in my mouth when it'll clearly not earn interest there!!!" I'm crackling here like geese :D

100% tested positive for cocaine? I had no idea even about 1%- Lord! I'm illiterate, i realize!

Michael Rivers said...

That is kinda freaky when you think about it. But also makes sense. I'm glad I use my debit card 99% of the time!

Badass Geek said...

100% of the money in my wallet has traces of rich, chocolaty Ovaltine. Because I do lines of that stuff like a PRO.

Andrea said...

Kind of makes me happy not to have any money!

Heavenly Housewife said...

Yes, I've heard that before about the cocaine. But darling, haven't you heard? Cash is for amateurs ;)
*kisses* HH

The Boob Nazi said...

I SO did NOT need to know this.

Elle said...

This is why I hate using cash, and I always carry around disinfecting hand wipes. That way, if I have to touch money, I can wipe my hands right away.

Some people scoff at the fact that I use my bank card for everything, but I'm convinced I pick up far less germs that way.

McVal said...

Well... this explains why I haven't caught that nasty flu bug yet... I'm always broke. and use my debit card a lot.

Christopher said...

I'd be concerned, if I had any money to begin with.

Bossy Betty said...

JM-I am concerned about you. Please send me all your money immediately and I will have it cleaned for you. I'll send it right back. Really. I will.

Dumblond said...

Is that why cash is green? Because it's so sickly?

NotJustAnotherJen said...

Did you know you had such worldwide appeal? Complaining about their euros...I've got a twoonie for ya!

Someone also recently commented to me about that dollar could have been in the g-string of a stripper's [ahem].

Thanks for the good morning post. Just what I want to read over my morning coffee. (really, I like your humor and thoughts)

Cheers!

Shell said...

Your p.s. had me LMAO!

Shell said...

Your p.s. had me LMAO!

Laura said...

I did know money was dirty, but I honestly try not to think about it. I try to put it out of my mind, otherwise I would hurl everytime I touch it. Thank God for debit cards.

Jane Kennedy Sutton said...

I’ve heard how dirty money is but have never given it much thought. Yuck. I think I’ll go disinfect my wallet now.

carma said...

when someone puts coins in my hand I literally can't wait to get out the hand sanitizer. Of course, I may be a wee bit anal sometimes :D

Kristina P. said...

I had heard this a lot time ago. I love dirty money.

obladi oblada said...

Ewww....(reaching for hand sanitizer). Im afraid I would kiss it though if I won a huge amount.

Is Amy Winehouse still around?

Intense Guy said...

Soon we will need full body condoms in fear of touching anything - including our own ATM cards.

I wonder how much cash has illegal (as in untaxed or illegal employee) DNA on it?

M-Cat said...

Touching money grosses me out! I think that is why I debit every damn thing. Even my 63 cent mug refill.

Although, now that I know SLC has come coke on their bills, perhaps???.......

(JK of course!)

AmyLK said...

Money is gross but we still want more!

Christiejolu said...

More reasons to use my debit card.

I grabbed a dollar bill out of my daughers mouth a while back. I noticed it smelled like smoke and thought the bill must have been in a bar and shuttered to think where else this dollar bill may have been. I washed her face and made her brush her teeth for like an hour. LOL! Money is NASTY!

Ashley Stone said...

funny post! I know, money is disgusting! I bartend on the weekends and have to handle money all the time, it's gross. One of my managers LICKS the money when he counts out the drawers! He is always sick. Nasty!

Christine Macdonald said...

I have a long history with dirty money as a stripper.... .Cash Rash on my leg from the bills in my garder. HOT. It's in the book. :)

Great post. I'm off to wash my hands now.

Jen said...

So interesting, JennyMac! I especially like the fact about the cocaine traces. I'm definitely sharing this in my Google Reader.

I rarely use cash, but when I do, I'm careful to wash my hands after handling money. It just FEELS dirty to me. Yuck!

MommaKiss said...

I just read that about the coke. In. SANE. And I seriously can't even fathom what is on the dolla dolla bills that Pole Dancers collect. And then spend. And then my child receives in a card from Gramma. And then rubs the dolla on his face.

Postman said...

Wait a minute. NINETY PERCENT of our paper money is coked up? Even the ones? The Washingtons? Where in the heck can you get cocaine in this country for $4 or less?!?!

You've really done it now, JennyMac. Every stoner in the blogsphere is going to be snorting their ones and fives. Then we'll have to deal with germs, coke, and mucus.

Postman said...

P.S. I've nominated you for an award. It's at my blog.

Brian Miller said...

eww...
i need to go brush my teeth...not that my money has been there, but...

Matty said...

Yep, I did hear about how dirty the money was and how "high" it is. This might be a great defense to a money laundering charge. "Your honor, I was just cleaning it up".

Grand Pooba said...

Cocaine? Seriously? I always knew money was dirty but I never thought about traces of drugs for heaven sakes! So how many dollar bills would I have to collect to get 1 oz. of cocaine?

Not for me of course, but you know everyone's thinkin it. lol

DeNae said...

I'm pretty sure you could insert "DeNae's Las Vegas neighbors" every place you said the word "money" in this post, and it would be just as truthful.

Only fitting, then, that more cash changes hands in this city than all of Africa combined. (Isn't that a great statistic? Yeah, I just made it up myself. I'm quite pleased with it.)

Erin said...

I don't generally carry much cash either--for that reason, and also b/c I'll spend it. I know it's filthy, but the hard part is my kiddos. They are learning about money and while they do have a play cash register, the real thing is more appealing to them. So occasionally I will ask them to Swiffer my floors and help me feed the dog, clean up, etc. and then I will pay them each a quarter or whatever. And they proudly carry it around while I cringe.

Emily said...

omg, I had no idea about drug traces being all over money! Gross!

And remember those pennies the kids did at the Aquarium? Jack put his in his mouth so many times that I finally had to confiscate it! wth!?

Kiki said...

yeah, that's why i always use hand sanitizer after handling bills and coins. grossness! take care.

Little Ms Blogger said...

So...I should lick my $$$ and prepare to have a happy buzz while suffering from the H1N1 virus.

Cool...

secret agent woman said...

I'm gong to have this to the list of things I choose not to worry about. I mean, viruses and bacteria are everywhere. And think about the water you drink - do you have any idea how many meds get flushed every day Especially psychotropic meds. Just not going to let it get to me...

Eva Gallant said...

Wow! That's a real eye-opener!

Krëg said...

That's why I give my cash to Zeke The Sheik; he "cleans" it for me.

Seriously, you probably shouldn't investigate the filth that lives on doorknobs if dirty cash weirds you out.

Personally, I try to expose myself to as many germs as possible for free-of-charge inoculation. There's no better way to fight the bugs.

I would like to know where you found some of your statistics. Much like Tony Montana, those cocaine numbers seem implausibly high. Even for the 1980s.

shortmama said...

nasty! All I can think about is how many crap germs are on the money?! Maybe its best I dont know

HalfAsstic.com said...

So is this why it always feels so good to pull cash out of the washer, (OK, sometimes I dry it, too)? Because I can only think every time, "Oh, honey... you SO needed that bath."
Poor Keelan is a carhop and handles money all day. There is much hand washing at her work.

Bex said...

oh man! i clicked over here bc i misread the post title: "you and your dirty monkey."

you can imagine my disappointment.
;-)

Mighty M said...

I am pretty sure that PDiddle would be the best name ever, he needs to change it, stat!

jackie fo said...

P DOOOOOOOOOODY. HAHAHAAA

J.J. in L.A. said...

Wonderful! I wash my hands about a billion times a day. NOW I'm gonna have to brush my teeth just as many times!

Or stop putting my money where my mouth is. ; )

Jewels For Hope said...

ha ha I LOVE the Amy Winehouse reference :)

Jaime said...

wow. there go my big plans for rolling around in a huge pile of money when i finally strike it rich in the lotto!

undomestic chica said...

Oh money will gain interest in your mouth, just not the kind you're hoping for :) I had heard the cocaine thing, but not the actual stats about the flu. Yuck!

Vivienne said...

This was hysterical. I love what you said to your Grams.

I have also heard a report that just about every dollar bill tested has been found to have fecal matter on it. ew? I doubt people are wiping their collective asses with $20s in this economy, but rather, they just aren't washing their hands...
ew.

JoeyRes said...

Next time my mother gets on my case for putting a $3 purchase on my credit card, I'm sending her to this post.

I knew I would be vindicated some day!

Entrepreneur Chick said...

YOU are absolutely entertaining and a delight. I have to get by here more often.

strokeofliving said...

This is quite possibly my favorite LHAC post, "lick the flu bug on the way to Pablo Escobar's" A riot. While reading I though you were going to say, "Why not lick the flu bug off Pablo Escobar's arse." Or something of that nature. But I won't dare edit you. It's funnier your way Jenny Mac!

Kate@And Then I Was a Mom said...

And THAT is why you should spend money as fast as humanly possible.

Kathryn said...

Ew, ew, ew. I predict that smoothie-guy will be down with something viral within a week. And I further predict that he won't have a clue how he got sick...but will instead try to blame it on his wife's sister's kid...who by sheer virtue of his age must be a walking, talking hotbed of germs.

And here I thought the coins were the carriers...

Fragrant Liar said...

Aaaaaaah-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!

"Why not just lick the flu bug on your way to Pablo Escobars?"

That's a riot. Best line of the day.

Dezzy Lou Where Are You said...

Why not just lick the flu bug on your way to Pablo Escobar's?

BEST LINE EVER (pun not intended)

Ed said...

Reading this post reminded me of the time when I was in the Navy and put a dollar bill in my mouth for a stripper to take with her vagina. Since her labia were pierced, she thought it helpful to spread them wide and wrap them around the sides of my face, like a sea creature of a similar name might do if it was eating my face. And now all I can think about is how lucky I am I didn't get some funky disease from putting that dollar in my mouth. Whew, that was a close one.

Unknown Mami said...

But if no one carries cash, how will cocaine survive?

T!nK said...

i gave you a blog award!

Ms. Salti said...

I love that you mention Salt Lake as a smaller city... we don't have as much coke on our bills not because we're small, but because we're largely inhabited by the mormons...

And if you win the lottery, remember who loves you!

Heather Taylor said...

I was a always a follower in The Graduate belief of plastics being the way of the future so I really seldom carry cash.
And when I do, it's stuffed in my bra at a nightclub.
God, I'm only adding to the bacteria! lol :)

Gillian said...

Send me some of those dollar bills for sniffing....

Kidding!!!!!!!!

Aunt Juicebox said...

Another good reason to use my debit or credit cards everywhere.

Lit Chick said...

You are one of the funniest bloggers I read. Great post but OH SICK!

Tsquared417 said...

That's disgusting. Yet another reason why I never have cash!! That...and being a teacher. ;)

T!nK said...

i have a new life goal. to have a bubble bath in cash. and see if i get high.

Kato said...

Ugh. Sick. I had heard all of these things before but to see them written down in one post, just like that...makes me want to eat poo before I touch money again. Haha. Well, maybe not, but you know what I mean.

And I loved the end of the post. You talking to the money...hilarious!

xoxo

Just Breathe said...

I feel lost without cash in my wallet. I do use antibacterial stuff all the time when I'm out.
I think I need to rethink the money thing.

Ela said...

Maybe it's my borderline OCD but I can't even eat after I've touched money. Let alone stick a bill in my mouth. Gross.

Though I have gotten a *wee* bit excited after finding *clean* money in our washing machine.

Anonymous said...

I used to work at a bank in a popular tourist city. On monday mornings all the "dancing" girls would come in with huge wads of ones and fives which were all mysteriously greasy. talk about dirty money- sick!Oh and also at the bank they used to tell us one of the most commonly found substances on money is feces....gross!!