Posted tagged ‘Australian Dollar’

Radix malorum est cupiditas

January 7, 2013


All those 1’s and 0’s have wiped the floor with paper. Nobody writes letters anymore or would have the faintest idea the correct method to address them. E-books are challenging paperbacks in the book market. And diaries have gone the way of the glass milk bottle. The historians of the future will be reading the tweets of today’s makers and shakers. The final redoubt for paper was in that most important of arena: money. Paper money used to be worth its weight in gold. Now even filthy lucre is under attack. The only ones happy about this are the trees.

Before I get to the transformation of cash story I have a few monetary interludes to make. There has been many cases of automated cash machines at banks being faulty (That’s the digital age for you) and giving out more money than the recipient wants. In most cases it gives you double what you ask for. Word soon leaks out as masses of people queue at the ATM for this unexpected windfall before the bank fixes the fault or stations a uniformed officer over it.

I’ve never been in this situation and If it did happen to me when I was at the wall I wonder what I would do? An extra twenty quid would be handy… Still, after an almighty clash of the titans between the good angel and the bad angel on my shoulders I would return the excess cash to the bank. The right side is always right. “You’re the only one who has returned the money” would say the surprised teller. One of these days I’ll get a knighthood.

Another scenario which is a recurring dream of mine -and probably millions of others- is money raining down from the sky. Hundreds and thousands of the stuff is pouring on the populace. In my fantasy there’s crowds of people stuffing the notes into their pockets and down their shirts. I’m in the middle of the throng with a face as happy as days. Good times are now. The cold light of day sobers me up. I imagine Bulgakov’s terrifying Master and Margarita theatre scene where the devil gives the audience free money (and he offers the ladies new stylish clothes to boot) before, Hey Presto, the money vanishes into thin air (as did the clothes). What the Good Lord (or Satan) giveth…

Right, back to the paper money problem. It’s all Australia’s fault. For some years now the Aussies have been using polymer money as currency. This plastic money is more durable than its paper counterpart. The Australian dollar can survive an accidental washing machine incident. This sounds like money laundering to me. The Bank of England are contemplating a switch over. The days of paper are numbered but it is good news for the trees.

This new form of exchange got me to thinking. I have many old plastic appliances that are gathering dust in the loft: Betamax video recorders and tapes, Sega mega drive console, floppy discs, fax machine, fifteen toasters I got as a wedding present. I could melt these obsoletes down and make a fortune of counterfeit money. Oh well, there goes my Knighthood.

Australian tender is no use to me so in anticipation of the new British plastic sterling I will show you how to make some new mint twenty pound notes.

·Pre heat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4

·Place the plastic appliance in a metal bucket at the top of the oven for sixty six hours

·Remove and leave to cool

·Beat with an electric hand-whisk until pale and fluffy

·Add sugar (come on, I like sugar) and whisk again

·Let product cool until it is ready to set

·Arrange ten thin paper (good old paper) rectangular cases on a tray

·Using a dessert spoon fill the cases with the melted plastic, smoothing off at the top

Done. The easy bit is filling in all the little details on the notes you’ve made: the security thread, drawing of the Queen and a couple of £20 signs.

It’s a piece of cake.