It appears that the Lincoln Cent is once again a topic of controversy!
Indeed, this coinage has had its fair share of publicity since it was first struck. For those of you who know not, the penny was the first of all authorized U.S. currency, and has had almost a dozen versions. Minted in 1787, it was designed by none other than Benjamin Franklin and called the “Fugio Cent.”
My own visage was not included on the penny until 1909, when Theodore Roosevelt was kind enough to change the tender in celebration of my 100th birthday. What a centennial honor! Before the backs of the coins were changed in 1958 to depict my memorial, they were “wheat backs,” which are now worth upwards of four cents!
Alas, it seems the days of the penny are numbered. Today, more money is spent to create them than they are worth. It is estimated that taxpayers spend $0.024 to mint just one cent.
Allow me to assure you that I am not affronted by the possibility of the removal of my coin. Just as during my presidency did I wish to preserve the Union, so now do I want nothing more than what is best for the people of this great nation. Whatever differs from this, to the extent of the difference, is no democracy. In addition, I still have my five dollar tender.
No, friends, I am exceedingly honored to have my name associated with one of the longest running coins in the history of world coinage. What, then, is my vexation? It is simply this: with all their boundless resources, why could CNN.com not find a better likeness to myself for their article?
I hope you stayed dry in last week’s disagreeable weather! I myself have dreadful luck with umbrellas, and just this morning had yet another turn inside out.
I have had several inquires regarding my wife, Mary Todd. Many of you are curious as to her interests since settling down in The Big Apple. Unfortunately, since I purchased a new Bose Lifestyle V-Class System, she has taken to entertaining herself in front of the television for most of the day. She is quite taken with a program entitled “The Real Housewives of New York,” and was so excited when we were invited to one of Ms. Sonja Morgan’s cocktail parties.
What an evening! Ms. Morgan forgot to wear undergarments, Ms. McCord was escorted out by security, Ms. Bensimon spoke only of gummy bears, and Ms. Singer incessantly yelled something about “turtle time” while drinking wine straight from a bottle she refused to share.
I truly hoped this awful night would end my wife’s obsession, but she enjoyed herself immensely. Just this afternoon Ms. Morgan insisted on taking her shopping to find some more “uptown” clothing. I dread to see what she returns with.
Apologies for my absence! It has indeed been far too long. I have been quite occupied in my work over the last few months, and am eager to return to documenting my time in the city.
As you may recall, last year I shared with you my email address (firstname.lastname@example.org), so that you could send me questions you may have. I have been quite taken aback by the inquiries, as they have been so insipid! I did not realize my opinion on ”vajazzling” would be so sought after. To settle the query once and for all: if I had to choose, I’d choose an American flag.
Be that what it would, I have received a lovely message from one George Stephenson. I doubt the considerate inventor of the “Stephenson guage” and “Father of the Railways” needs any introduction? I share with you his words:
I have read with great interest about your adventures in New York. The beer pong incident was particularly amusing. I myself have been a long time admirer of your fair nation, given its extensive use of my steam engine, which proved instrumental during your Civil War. My locomotives could reach speeds of a blistering twenty-four miles per hour, nearly twice as fast as this internet! (I still cannot fathom what said internet runs on. So far all I have learned is that an alarming number of young ladies suffer from a distinct lack of suitable clothing. Mrs. Stephenson and I intend to set up a charity to help clothe these poor wretches. But I digress.)
My friend, I write to you to ask your opinion on the current fiscal difficulties that face our countries. You see, until recently, I enjoyed the privilege of being the face of legal tender. We even shared the same denomination (tho my £5 sterling held greater value, at one point equaling $8.14) until I was replaced in 2003 by Elizabeth Fry. She claims to be out at all hours helping the homeless, though I have evidence that her activities are of a much more shameful type. My question to you is, how can I reclaim my monetary status?
George, I implore you to return to your technological studies, and forget the spotlight. The United States is far more in need of affordable transit than the United Kingdom needs new coinage! In fact, I find the antics of those Americans who desire to reclaim their fame with tattle and scandal to be quite sad indeed. However, if you so favorably seek public attention, may I suggest trying to bring back I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here? I just can not get enough of those Baldwin brothers.
I have moved to the Financial District! I enjoy the cobblestone streets and views of the river, and my apartment is quite subway-convenient. However, I’ve had several encounters with brokers and bankers that have given me some irritation.
Just the other night I was at a tavern in close neighborhood when a young, disheveled gentleman approached to observe my party’s beer pong match. He was quite seasoned (I daresay he’d had enough to fill a pipe of wine!), and began to speak loudly of his occupation and personal wealth. At one point he boasted that he could “buy and sell me.” I feel I need not explain my vexation at this.
He continued to drink and brag of his accomplishments, telling us to “picture like, the biggest house you’ve ever seen, then add the value of the most expensive car you can think of. That’s how much money I make.”
I suppose he is within his right to be proud. $2500 is a fine salary. I simply reminded him that my visage is ON the money he earns, and returned to my game (which I won).
I have completed my Christmas list to Old Saint Nick! Here is what I am asking for:
I hope I do not receive coal this year, I was a very good boy.
Poke Me! -
I have created a page on the Facebook where I will post updates and fun findings. Please click “Poke Me!” above to join in the fun! Just yesterday I added an album with some of my bobbleheads that I keep on my desk at work.
I hope this fine Sunday finds you well. I have been doing some traveling of late, and yesterday I found myself in fine Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. They have several Underground Railroad tours, which I quite enjoyed despite the overwhelming odor of mushrooms throughout the township.
After the tour my companions surprised me with a ticket to the Kennett Square Brewfest. You may be somewhat graveled as to why I conceded to attend this festival, as I am personally a teetotaler. Be it what it would, I have always been outspoken about my view that prohibition is anti-American, and by jingo, I’m from Kentucky!
Though most of my friends were quite seasoned after only a few hours, I quite enjoyed the festivities of the afternoon. I highly recommend you try the “Bacon on a Stick” should you attend next year.
It has been awhile indeed. I wanted to share this photograph of my evening at the Phillies game yesterday. Believe it or not, I had my first wiener! All in all I quite enjoyed myself, though I did not end up on the Kiss Cam. I suppose that is for the best, as I received quite a tongue lashing from Mary Todd for staying out late as it is.
It is high time I addressed another of your inquiries!
I want to grow a beard. But I can’t. What do you think my next course of action is?
Beardless in Boise”
Well, Beardless, your fine question is well received. I did not always have my own whiskers, but at the bidding of sweet young Grace Bedell, I decided to adorn my face with the nation’s first presidential beard in the autumn of 1860. At first I worried people would call it a piece of silly affection. I would allow that many of my colleagues worried my beard would negatively impact my career. After successfully emancipating around four million slaves, you can warrant their bare cheeks were red as a Confederate flag.
Worry not Beardless! There are many options for you. If not a beard, why not a chin curtain? Perhaps a fine hulihee or balbo would suit you well? If all else fails, I’m told the ladies quite like a chin puff.