Western New York's proximity to Canada causes us to end up with an unusually large amount of Canadian currency in our pockets. We joke about how the Canadian dollar is only worth about 80 cents or so. We cross our fingers, hoping the toll-booth taker is too dizzy on carbon monoxide fumes to notice we slipped him a couple Canadian quarters among our $0.95 toll. Of particular amusement, is the "Looney" and the "Tooney," coins of $1 and $2 denominations respectively. Just saying it evokes patronizing giggles as we leave them as tips for your bartenders, or throw them in a sock drawer for our next trip to the "Canadian Ballet."
I will go on record, though, to say that the Canadian $5 dollar bill is the coolest bank note on the planet. Okay, so the face side has the crusty old diplomat of European descent: Wilfrid Laurier, the first French Canadian Prime Minister. The second side, however, has a portrait entitled "Children at Play," featuring a pond-full of kids playing "shinny," or pick-up hockey.
Our bank notes got a face-lift over the past couple of years. Our European forefathers got bigger, greener portraiture while the artwork remained pretty much the same. I wondered what, if anything, they might have put on the back depicting American "Children at Play." I remember as a kid, I couldn't wait to get to the park after school to play baseball, throw my arms up in the air like Carlton Fisk as I sent the tennis ball sailing over the right field wall. Am I harking back to a by-gone era, or do kids actually do that anymore?
On second thought, keep the Lincoln Memorial.