One more thing that happened today was that I got a couple of the new $20 bills from an ATM today. I've read a lot of things about them in blogs and online columns, but this was my first time to see them up close.
So here's my take on the whole thing: It's not that bad. It doesn't look as much like Monopoly money as I had feared. The peach coloring isn't that obvious, and I didn't even notice the tiny little gold 20's on the back side until someone else pointed it out. The extra "hidden" Andrew Jackson portrait on the lower right-hand side is a little freaky, and the "USA TWENTY" markings are a bit over the top, but I like the color-changing "20" that's in the same corner. Some have said it's undignified, but I think it still looks less "fake" than most foreign currency, and I'm sure it'll be a lot more difficult to counterfeit.
But here's the thing that strikes me as funny: Opening up newspapers and magazines and seeing full-page ads for the bill. That's right, the treasury is advertising money! It's like I read somewhere earlier in the week: What's the point in advertising? What else are we going to use? It's not like we're going to go back to trading with sheep and goats again (man, wouldn't that be awful if I got paid for lessons that way). I guess the ad blitz is mostly for merchants who are out-of-the loop so they'll know the new bills aren't fake.
QUOTE OF THE DAY: "That eagle on Jackson’s left, is it having a seizure? It looks like it’s in mortal anguish! I swear that it’s twisting and writhing in death throes."--Phil of stereoboy.org, who wasn't as charitable towards the new money in his post on the subject.