Hitchhikers don’t lay across the road to get a passing driver to stop his vehicle.
That is a good way to get killed.
Instead, the hitchhiker tries to catch a ride with someone going his way.
Are we in coin collecting, in our zeal to promote it, laying in the road rather than going with the flow of life?
We can’t force people to collect coins.
However, we can point out how collecting can fit in with the flow of their lives.
Online I saw an article about Americans spending less and saving more.
Reasons you would expect for saving money are cited.
With savings coming back into fashion, this aspect of coin collecting should be emphasized.
Saving money was an important reason Depression-hit Americans in the 1930s filled out Whitman coin boards and then albums.
They were not collectors as we would define them. But some would become hobbyists.
Eighty years later, you can still save money by saving coins.
We know that rolls of state quarters put away as that program rolled along helped bail people out after the 2008 financial crash.
Let’s figure out a way to get Americans to put coin rolls away again as a means of saving.
If they happen to look at each coin in the roll, so much the better.
We know that in the 1950s, parents put their kids to work searching through large quantities of cents and other denominations.
Why not again?
There likely are rare 1982-D small date cents made of the 95 percent copper alloy still in circulation.
We have seen a recent discovery of a copper 1983 cent.
These rare errors are hard to find. But you have to look.
Get the kids or grandkids to do the searching.
They have better eyesight anyway.
Buy them an inexpensive scale that will show the 3.11 gram weight of the copper or the 2.5 gram copper-coated zinc weights.
Then bring them cent rolls to search for the 1982 and 1983 dates.
They can then be identified and/or weighed when necessary.
Working with a scale and weights will involve learning, or using a little bit of basic math.
That’s not a bad thing in a country where so many people are afraid of the subject.
Most of those people who undertake these coin-related activities will never become collectors.
That was always true, even in the 1950s.
However, some will.
The point is, let's present numismatics as something that is both interesting and fits into the life of the average American.
Americans are not happy if someone has decided to lie down in the road in front of them.
We need to get out of the way.
We collectors need to catch a ride with other Americans on the way to a common future.
Buzz blogger Dave Harper won the Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog for the third time in 2017. He is editor of the weekly newspaper "Numismatic News."
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