I Did It My Way

by chris cunningham


After years of trying to find someone to take me to New York, so they could show me around, I finally caved. I’m now going. Last time I was in New York was 1977. The summer of the New York City blackout, Son of Sam, the Apple II was released, Star Wars came out, Elvis died, and Studio 54 was in full swing. I thought I would try to finance the trip in a way that steers clear of my bank account. So as I cleaning the house I was thinking of ideas of how to do this when I came across the infamous “penny jar”. Hmmm… I’d been throwing quarters, dimes, and nickles in there too. I certainly didn’t want to count it all and put them into rolls. I remembered the Coin Star machine at the grocery store that does all that and takes a small cut. So I packed up pennies, put them in the cart, wheeled them through the store and started dumping into the machine. Ching, ching, ching, ching… it took forever and I refused to look at the total until I finished. As the last coin dropped through, a total of 4106 pennies, 818 nickles, 1146 dimes, and 329 quarters. Total cash amount $279.31! Minus the processing fee, 254.45! Ok, so straight to the bank and then online to book a ticket. No one can beat Jet Blue to New York so I type in Long Beach to New York. $255.20. Roundtrip ticket to New York? .75 cents. Priceless.