Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I don’t necessarily miss these things but I remember
As much as I like the trappings and ethos of the past
I remember when you had to actually go to the bank, during opening hours, and take this thing they used to give you, called a “passbook” that had your account transactions written into it. When you wanted money, you took this passbook into your branch, and only your branch, and got money out by talking to the guy at the counter and signing a little bit of paper. If the bank was closed, you had to wait until tomorrow.

When you paid bills, you wrote a thing called a “cheque” and put it in an envelope and into the post box and then subtracted the amount of the cheque from your cheque book. This was called “balancing your chequebook”.

But that was in the days when money was a Real thing.

It was also when people watched this big box thing they had called a “TV set”. You had to change the channel on the “TV Set”, using a kind of dial thingy on the front. You had to get up off the sofa and walk over to the TV set to do this.

It all seemed pretty high tech at the time.
Rather this harkens to the time before this, when money was real. Definitely before 1933 (gold) in the US and arguably before 1968 (silver) and the Nixon Shock in 1971 (the dollar is no longer backed by anything except government promises, ‘full faith and credit’: fiat money). When some of your dollar bills were tradeable at the bank for real money, specie (‘payable to bearer on demand’).

From Hilary.

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