carry cash.

23 Aug

The more I write this blog, the more I realize my grandfather may be the coolest Grown Man I’ve ever known.  And, even though he has an aversion to wearing a tie, eating any form of bean, and The Pope (I don’t share his disdain), he is typically my go-to Draper-in-residence (without all the skirt chasing and domestic violence).  So today, I’m thinking about my grandfather as I begin to talk about Grown Men carrying cash.  Why?  Because that old dude typically has a wad of cash in his sweat pants pocket that would make even the most seasoned of Chamillionaire jealous.  For real, I’m pretty certain that he’s been to K-Mart a number of times with a grand in small bills — not kidding at all.

So, why should you carry cash?  Because, like the Boy Scouts say, you’ve got to be prepared. Young men reading this blog, imagine the following scenario:  You’re on a date with a lovely lass when she spots one of those awesome Catholic (sorry Tilt-A-Whirl Of Lovegrandpa) church carnivals in the distance.  Without warning, your plans for a movie and some making-out have been thwarted and your evening will now look more like funnel cakes and Ferris wheels.  Bummer.  However, she wants to go and you quickly realize that you might be able to get some of that sweet kissin’ action on the Tilt-A-Whirl, so you concede. But wait, you’ve hit a snag, the movie theater is more than willing to accept credit cards for purchase, but the carnival is doing some serious IRS dodging and will only accept cash or cigarettes for rides.  Oh the embarrassment!  Oh the Tilt-A-Whirl!

Our society has become completely plastic (no offense to Joan Rivers) and we no longer require cash for a majority of our transactions.  I believe this shift came in 2004 when our greatest national export began accepting credit at all 1.8 quad-trillion golden arch locations.  Yep, that’s the year that McDonald’s got sick and tired of subjecting their 14-year-old register kids to men fumbling around in their wallets and holding up the line while begging money off their friends.  Until that time, we knew that even the most basic of American needs (Big Macs and those awesome apple pies) would necessitate even a dollar-menu’s worth of green.  But when they jumped ship, so did the fat country.  Now, we’re stuck at the carnival with a pissed off girlfriend and an ATM walk of shame.

Gentlemen, you’ve got to be ready for whatever comes your way. From carrying a pocket knife to having at least $30 in your wallet at all times, there are just some necessities for navigating this concrete world.  Back in the day, and I mean really back in the day, a man wouldn’t have left his cabin without a gun, some water (whisky), and a hat.  He knew that with these three things he could eat, sleep, be safe, and look tough as hell.  It’s time for us to reclaim that duty as men and make sure that we’re always well equipped with the bare minimum.

But Grown Man, what if I get robbed?  If they steal my wallet and I don’t have cash, all I have to do is cancel credit cards!

I love the “getting robbed” excuse for being ill prepared.  Because truthfully, most people don’t get pick-pocketed.  If you live in Compton or something, maybe you should consider not carrying a grandfather-wad of money. But most of you live in Generic City, USA and carry a $250 mini-computer in your pocket without giving it a second thought.  Are you really that nervous about not carrying anything valuable? I don’t think so.  Additionally, $32 bones given to some armed bandit isn’t going to break the bank — hopefully.  If it is, you’ve got bigger fish to fry and should probably consider becoming an armed bandit yourself.

That’s all for today, go to the ATM on your lunch break and enjoy the Tilt-A-Whirl.

You’re a Grown Man, carry cash.


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9 Responses to “carry cash.”

  1. James 23 August 2010 at 11:06 am #

    Fantastic. I’ll be going to the ATM today. Thanks once again!

  2. Travis 23 August 2010 at 11:47 am #

    Nicely put. Good references to Boy Scouts and the fact we carry expensive gadgetry around. Grown men appreciate perspective.

  3. Nate 23 August 2010 at 12:26 pm #

    And of course all of the automated Google ads are for credit cards. Hilarious. (great post too!!)

  4. Pop 24 August 2010 at 8:14 am #

    So, so true! Especially as a grown father, cash is of utmost importance. Going to the carnival, fair, farmers market, etc…without cash? Be prepared for your child to cry and wonder why daddy can’t buy them a snack.

  5. Tom 24 August 2010 at 9:01 am #

    Another dead-on column … and another poignant reminder that my father, with his blue-collar sensibility and lack of college education, forever will be 10 times the Grown Man I am. Dad always carried cash – no plastic in THAT wallet, thank you very much, not even a gas card – and he meticulously monitored expenses, putting two children through college with a surgical ability to painlessly separate luxury from necessity. After his death, at the gone-too-soon age of 59, I pored through boxes of canceled checks and found a handwritten pocket ledger that chronicled our travel budget on a westward vacation. Every stop at the Esso or Sinclair station, every roadside diner and zoo and baseball game and motel (always with a swimming pool) and amusement park – all accounted for, down to the penny. And, near the end of the trip, as the family station wagon lumbered toward home, just enough cash left for ice cream. As I scroll through your consistently helpful output here, I smile at the ironic truth that so much of what you impart – from wearing a watch to being a loyal friend to minding one’s manners – was common sense once-upon-a-time. Dad would have turned 80 this month and, while you obviously never met him, you honor him (along with your grandfather) for their practicality – and you challenge us to pick up the torch for the simple betterment of GMkind. Bless you, sir.

  6. Mary 28 August 2010 at 3:30 pm #

    I couldn’t agree more!
    Women loves grown men who is always prepared=)

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