An artisanally crafted blog curated by Cooking Lager for discerning readers of beer bloggery

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Money Money Money

Beer blogs, as you know are not all about beer, but an opportunity to rant. Rant about anything you like. Anything from the governments, smoking bans, even flapjacks. They are a way of telling an apathetic hostile world what you think. In a world of over 6 billion people, is it easy to think you are an insignificant statistic, probably because that’s correct, but let’s assume more than one or two people read this tosh, for the sake of argument. Let assume we can move the world.

I would like to rant about £5 notes. Here in blighty the £5 is the lowest note denomination of currency. Lower that a “fiver” and we are in coin territory. There is a £1 and £2 coin in circulation. Above a fiver sits a £10 or tenner and £20 or twenty (not for some reason twenter, go figure). £50 notes are fairly rare (if I had one I would treasure it and never spend it), and only the Scottish has the £100 note. Run down here.

Now I don’t like breaking a note at the best of times, but the higher the denomination the more difficult it is. I don’t like spending shiny coins either, or crisp new notes of any denomination. I can spend any amount on a plastic card, but parting with cash is painful. Currently the new twenties are lovely; I don’t like to part with them. Breaking a twenty is painful. Fiver’s and tenners are less painful; they tend to be a bit tatty anyway. However there is a further fly in the ointment that makes breaking any note above a fiver fill me with an unquenchable rage. There a no bloody fivers in circulation in this shitting country.

Break a tenner for a low value item, some twonk at the cash register thinks its okay to give me 8 pounds coins back. It’s not okay, give me a five pound note and 3 pound coins you tosser. This happens in pubs, cafe’s, sandwich bars, newsagents, fast food dens, every bloody where.

Small businesses of Britain get your bloody cash management sorted. I am a man; I have a wallet, not a purse. Wallets are designed for notes and a few coins. A handful of coins are a pain in the arse.

Buying a burger recently, I actually broke a twenty, something I rarely do, as it is often just too painful, but I had no choice as I had nothing else on me, and the spotty gormless kid serving thought it okay to give me all the change in pound coins. “You're having a laugh” I said, “Sorry that all that’s in the till” he said “Open another till” I said “Sorry, I can’t” “That is unacceptable, if you cannot open another till, find the manager that can”. The manager turns up, opens another till, I get a tenner and a fiver, along with my burger of cheap mediocrity, and that outlet loses my custom henceforth. I don’t want to have to have a discussion to get what is clearly reasonable. I should just get it as a matter of course.

Small businesses, for Christ’s sake sort out your cash management, get some fivers in your till. It’s not okay to hand me a handful of pound coins. It makes me think twice about stepping foot in your gaff again, unless I’ve got the right money. Make it easy for me to break a note. It’s painful enough without you making it more painful.

Oh and don’t try and pass a Scottish note on me, you are business, you do business banking and cash management, I potter to a cash point every so often. If you want to accept jock notes that’s fine. I don’t accept ‘em because they are a pain in the arse to pass on, just sort out your cash management, for Christ’s sake.


Curmudgeon said...

Ah yes, but mine isn't a beer blog as such, it's an outpouring of vitriol loosely hung around the topic of pubs and beer.

And I agree with you on fivers – but the problem is, it's a right pain in the backside for small businesses to actually get any out of banks in the first place.

The Beer Nut said...

No fivers, eh? So that's why I always come home from the UK with two tonnes of metal in my pockets. Yeah: sort it out.

But you should accept jock notes. Everyone should accept jock notes, and Northern Irish ones (where they also have £100 notes) IT'S FUCKING STERLING, YOU MONGS. WHAT KIND OF TERMINALLY BEWILDERED FUCKWIT CAN'T EVEN RECOGNISE THE CURRENCY OF THEIR OWN FUCKING COUNTRY?

Oh, it's "Irish money", is it, Ms Shopkeeperess? Would you like me to tell you what the actual currency of the Republic of Ireland is? Hmm? Well, IT'S NOT THE FUCKING POUND STERLING WHICH IS WHAT'S WRITTEN CLEARLY ON THIS ULSTER BANK TENNNER.

Tandleman said...

Ah John. Calm down. The main reason that "foreign" notes such as Scottish and N Irish aren't accepted is that the receiver can't be sure of their provenance and there are a lot of forgeries about.

That and English arrogance of course.

The Beer Nut said...

the receiver can't be sure of their provenance
What does this mean? That the receiver may not know that First Trust is an actual real sterling-issuing bank? See comment above about recognising the currency of your own country.

there are a lot of forgeries about
Indeed there are. This is why businesses have forgery-checking devices.

Cooking Lager said...

Tandleman has a point from the point of view of businesses, familiarity is the main tool used to spot forgeries, rather than expensive POS equipement. From my view as a punter, I don't want to pick up a note in one shop/bar/pub that experience tells me I will have difficulty passing on in the next. Hence I ask for a proper fiver.

But fair play, Beer Nut, it is a dumb country that has such differences in its note issue. It's a parochial small island. Opposition to the euro is down entirely to a parochial island attitude, and not economics.

Even though the economics do back up keeping the pound and having nothing to do with europe.

Cooking Lager said...

@Curmudgeon. I love your blog, more vitriol!

Tandleman said...

What does this mean? That the receiver may not know that First Trust is an actual real sterling-issuing bank?

It means precisely that. I agree with you BN, but that is sorrily the way it is.

I have suffered with this for years and was pressed into service in the garage where my car is to verify the legitimacy of a Northern Irish twenty pound note. I thought it was, but seriously, how would I really know even with a forgery checking device? You just don't come across them day to day.

The Beer Nut said...

It means precisely that.
Seems to me that people whose job involves handling money should be trained to recognise those things that are money and those things that are not money.

Cheese sandwich: not money.
RBS £20: money.

It's not that hard. I mean, I've managed it.

how would I really know even with a forgery checking device?
I think this is one for HM Tresury to sort out. Either with a publicity campaign which shows citizens what sterling looks like, since the terminal bewilderment problem appears to be endemic, or by extending the monopoly of the Bank of England to the entire UK.

Either way, do sort it out please lads. Quick as. Ta.

Woolpack Dave said...

Oh dear me, what a lot of fuss.

Mind you, if everybody who got change actually used it to buy stuff, rather than putting in in their pockets, going home and letting the wife/girlfriend/mother empty their pockets and then paying it into their secret account, we retail businesses would keep running out of change. No wonder you think pubs are expensive when you use 4 twenties in a night and only drink 6 pints. Besides, when you get up next day and the wife asks where those twenties went, despite the fact she has £50 in coins that you didn't know about, you've lost big time.


I like a good vitriolic rant.

I like Scottish notes, they are nicer looking than English ones. Anyway, who the hell would be daft enough to forge Scottish notes?

Oh, and Irish notes are even nicer. I don't like them Euro things though, oh damn, now that would be politics, lets not go there.

Tim said...

Australian notes are made of plastic and are impossible to forge. The notes coming out of the UK wouldnt last ten seconds in Aus.
Australia coins are shthouse though. They are too big and heavy.

Velky Al said...

Isn't there a legal difference between Bank of England notes and those issued in Scotland and Northern Ireland?

I seem to remember reading somewhere that only Bank of England notes are legal tender, whereas Scottish and Irish notes are promisory notes based on the fact that every time the Scottish and Irish bank print a certain amount of money they buy Bank of England notes to secure the value of the notes.

Thus technically Scottish and Irish notes have no legal basis anywhere in the UK, but are accepted in their respective nations on the basis of tradition not law.

Barm said...

That's exactly the situation as I understand it, Velky Al. Scottish nationalists tend to get upset when you mention this, for some reason.

Velky Al said...

I guess I am one of the few Scots with little time for Scottish nationalism and independence - but then I have never bought into the Jacobite mythology peddled by some who should read their history books a bit more carefully if they would really want a Stewart back on the throne.

The Beer Nut said...

Yes there's a legal difference. Anyone care to explain the practical upshot of this? The Bank olf England reckon it's zero:
"The term legal tender does not in itself govern the acceptability of banknotes in transactions. ... In ordinary everyday transactions, the term ‘legal tender’ has very little practical application."

But what would they know, eh?