Queer as a $2 Bill: Conscious thought vs. being on autopilot

I went to the bank yesterday to close out an account. The teller gave me a couple of $2 bills with the rest of the cash from my account. These were dated 2003 and I don’t see them very often. My first thought, before I came to my senses, was to not spend them. This wasn’t a thought of holding them as part of an emergency cash reserve. I was thinking of holding then as a keepsake, the way a lot of people held onto the bills when they were reissued back in 1976.

When I got outside the bank, I realized that my thought was a preprogrammed response to having something more or less rare. Why do we do that? And why “paper money?” It has no value as a numismatic and won’t for maybe 100 years. it’s just like the knee-jerk collectors of the “gold-tone” dollar coins. I get those in change a lot because there is a change machine at work. There’s always someone wanting to give me ones for them.

The United States currency worth collecting is either silver and gold American Eagles or gold or silver coins which were issued pre-1964. The rest is only worth spending or holding as a cash reserve.

The money is just the object or the symptom. The thing really needing examining us why we are on autopilot when consciousness involves identification followed by action. It’s true that a lot worse happens to people from being on autopilot than sticking money in a hope chest. Walk into any cemetery and you’ll pass by the grave of someone who was both their own victim and someone else’s.

I try to catch myself doing this as often as possible. My goal is to make conscious decisions and actions 100% of the time. As preppers we should always be as innocent as doves and wise as serpents. There are real serpents out there who aren’t so innocent.


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