I’m about to become penniless. I’ll not be without means, mind you. My jeans will simply be without copper coins.

Last month the Canadian government did away with the penny. Come the fall, the Mint will stop producing pennies; and those in circulation will eventually make their way to the melting pot.

Then, the smallest denomination coin will be the nickel. In cash transactions, apparently, amounts will be rounded to the nearest nickel. Some items may cost you more, some less.

The reason for murdering the penny? It’s a burden on the economy, they say. It costs more to produce the penny than a penny. 0.6 cents more in fact.

I say: Pahhh.

There’s more at stake than 0.6 cents. Such as:

  • Five-year old children across Canada will never know the delights of penny candy.
  • Trivial things will no longer be penny ante. They will be nickel ante. Imagine how the nickel feels about is demotion to triviality. It’s enough to make the beaver smack its tail in disgust and move to another coin.
  • It will be more expensive to think. No longer will you be able to offer a penny for a person’s thoughts.
  • And my two cents’ worth will be rounded down and be meaningless.

I don’t deal well with change. Thirty-some years ago Canada switched to Celsius and metric measurements, and I am still hoping that soon the government will realize it was a huge mistake. Until then I will continue to think in Fahrenheit and Imperial, and do the math to translate temperature and measurements to the “foreign” system.

Now they’re going to do away with the penny. That small round copper disk with the maple leaves backing the Queen has been a constant in my life. For all of my life.

This change, unlike the move to metric, is not one that I can manage with a mathematical formula. Except to round things to the nearest nickel.

There are a few months yet before the penny becomes obsolete. I will mourn its passing, but until then I plan to offer my two cents’ worth frequently. While it’s still worth two cents.

© Charlotte Morganti