My Code Name Is Flamingo

12 Sep

I’m pretty sure I used counterfeit money this past weekend and passed it off as legal tender.

For don’t-put-me-in-prison purposes, allow me to first note that it was not my fault.

I stopped by the ATM to get out some spending cash before heading out to an arts and crafts store to unleash my inner autumn beast and having a fall decoration bonanza.    For some reason when I take cash out at the ATM and tell myself I can only use that to spend, I’m much more fiscally responsible than just having a piece of plastic, where I believe things are paid for with magic and sunshine.

But while at the ATM, I was dispensed a few twenty dollar bills – one of which was funky.

For starters, it was an old school twenty.  You know, back before Andrew Jackson’s head was so darn big?  I know there are still some in circulation but it said 1985 and looked like it was printed last week.    It wasn’t just that.  I mean, I’m no counterfeit expert but this bill felt like regular paper – not that part paper, part cloth feel that helps you distinguish a bill from a piece of scratch paper in the bottom of your purse.  …Or is that just me?

I would have been able to more accurately distinguish whether or not it was a piece of funny money if it was a newer 20 (because I can’t remember for the life of me what security features are on old school money) or if I had a smartphone (one more bullet point in my list of why I should update my phone from 5 years ago).  But as it were, I was out and about, without a guide, and needed to use that twenty.

Which I was almost certain was funny.

Oh, I left out the most concerning part, which was that the right and left borders didn’t at all match.  In fact, the right border looked like someone had trimmed it with a pair of scissors. …Using their non-dominant hand.

But alas, I needed to off the twenty for goods to celebrate autumn and I had no interest in returning to the ATM, which already dispensed me one questionable bank note and may very well give me another.  I could have held onto it until today and taken it in during bank hours, but I work the same times as them and they’re on the other side of town.  That’s a lot of running around just because my bank is involved in a dirty crime scheme.

All signs pointed to spending it at an establishment that didn’t sport counterfeit pens. So I chose Petco.  I couldn’t remember ever buying anything at Petco and getting my money checked for counterfeit.  And even if they do have the pens, I banked on the fact that there was probably a disgruntled kid working there over the summer that just didn’t care.  And I didn’t mind picking up a few things there.  After all, what fun is celebrating autumn unless I can get some treats and goodies for the kittens to enjoy the day as well?

These are the signs of a true, emerging cat lady.

After I gathered an armful of catnip, treats, and other unnecessary pet frivolities, I headed to a register with a yawning, jaded twenty-something who didn’t even look like she liked pets.

I briefly recalled an application I put in for this Petco many years before and a small, silent rage burned inside me.

It came time to settle up and I offered up my funny twenty to pay.   My gut wrenched slightly as I searched for the pen of truth on her register. What would I say if she marked it?  What would happen to me?  Would she just give the money back or would she call some sort of authority?

By the time my mind catapulted me to the back of a cruiser car, screaming wildly about the ATM dispensing bills that looked like they were printed off my home computer, the girl was handing me my change and wishing me a good day.

No pen, no questions, no concerns whatsoever.  In fact, she entirely neglected to hand me a ten dollar bill – a very crucial component of my fourteen dollars in change.   She apologized profusely for the mistake but I didn’t mind.  It wasn’t her fault.  I sought her out.  I knew she was an excellent choice and she went above and beyond the apathetic call of duty by not only ignoring the funny nature of the twenty I handed over, but being so completely oblivious that she didn’t even calculate basic math.

Successful transaction with criminal money and successful typing?

I should be a secret agent.


14 Responses to “My Code Name Is Flamingo”

  1. wordsfallfrommyeyes September 12, 2011 at 9:06 am #

    I really liked your post – love the way you wrote it out. And love your code name!


    • Jackie September 17, 2011 at 12:52 pm #

      Thanks! I really appreciate it 🙂


  2. Maxim September 12, 2011 at 9:22 am #

    You sly dog. Which bank was this that gave you a bogus 20? Must be a pretty sketchy bank.


  3. Seasweetie September 12, 2011 at 9:34 am #

    Off topic of your great post today, but I had to share with you that I (most bizarrely) dreamed about your blog last night. That you had all these followers who had stickers on their computers or magnets on their refrigerators that said “The Jackie Blog”. How random is that? And I’m totally not a creeper.


    • Jackie September 13, 2011 at 7:52 pm #

      Sea, this is epic. Truly epic. I can only hope that you saw into the future.

      Because it would mean I either survived a year of posts or I failed so epically that people followed like lambs.

      I want lambs.


  4. lunarmoth September 12, 2011 at 11:16 am #

    Heh, a very “funny” post, Flamingo! That bill certainly sounds suspicious, but you gotta do what you gotta do. And kitties are VERY important! 🙂 Whenever I have had one, she was the REAL head of the house.


    • Jackie September 13, 2011 at 7:43 pm #

      Since I successfully offed it, I might be able to actually run a small counterfeit scheme. But I’d only be able to buy things at Petco…


  5. Momma September 12, 2011 at 5:51 pm #

    well, my dear…when you are in question of whether money is good or not… time don’t call your Father and ask him… your Mother who is trained in knowing what is a good bill or not and I will give you the things to look for….you silly girl!


    • Jackie September 13, 2011 at 7:40 pm #

      You know, it never even occurred to me. I consider Dad to be the knower of all things National Security. It just felt right.


  6. life is a bowl of kibble September 12, 2011 at 8:18 pm #

    So funny, I loved it


    • Jackie September 13, 2011 at 7:37 pm #

      Thanks so much for reading 🙂


  7. pickle September 13, 2011 at 3:57 pm #

    Check out “Party in the CIA” by Weird Al. Yes, Weird Al.


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