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Bob Cratchit could do it

I had an e-mail reminder late yesterday from the U.S. Mint to hurry up and buy the 2009-dated products that will go off sale Dec. 30.

I know such reminders are good marketing. Additional sales will result. Nobody knows how many.

As for me, if I haven’t bought a 2009 issue, it is because I decided during that particular year that I did not want to buy it.

I don’t need two years to make up my mind. I know virtually as soon as I hear something is available whether I would like to order it.

Looking over order patterns for various products, most collectors must feel the same way. There is always a bulge during the first few weeks of the availability of anything. In the first month just about everybody who wants something has ordered. The rest are stragglers.

Is this because collectors are all similar? Is it because many of us remember when the Mint had 30-day or other limited-time advance order periods for issues and only after the total number of orders was known would delivery begin?

I know this particular method is terribly old-fashioned, but it might have been useful in the current America the Beautiful debacle.

Take the orders. Add them up. Figure out the fairest way to distribute them.

How long will it take our sophisticated modern techniques to get this basic job done?

With the holiday shortened work week, my next blog will be Monday.