Penny For Your Thoughts?

medium_8806988“A penny for your thoughts?”

I only recall one individual ever having used this phrase towards me. It does not seem to be something we use any longer, nor think of. Perhaps in our modern age, we are far too removed from one another to make such an intimate inquiry.

Such a selflessly philosophical and humanistic idiom; for who could be so self-important to deny a penny for their mere thoughts with a claim “they are worth more”, and yet who could be so self-important to accept the penny thus stating “my thoughts have monetary worth”?

Thus the true depth of the offer. Yet, many a thinker would truly pay for one’s ponderings, if it could enrich our lives.

What better way to communicate to our fellow human beings our, and my especially, willingness and sheer desire to truly here their thoughts:

May I offer a penny for them?

Your thoughts?

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9 thoughts on “Penny For Your Thoughts?

  1. I used to hear ‘penny for your thoughts’ all the time, but the phrase has fallen into disuse. Perhaps I’m dating myself! What I like most about it is that it is assumed that the one saying it acknowledges that one does not know everything, that one actually cares what others think, and that co-operative thought is productive. Unfortunately I am not sure how much real thinking goes on these days; I see more living based on ‘feeling’, knee-jerk reactions, and responding to primal urges. As one professor once told me, “The average person stops thinking at age 25”. It has gotten many friends of mine into a pickle, with life-long consequences sometimes. Long live a properly educated conscience and a well-thought-out life!

    And feel free to keep the penny. We can just work on a barter system!

    • I definitely see what you mean every day when you say “not sure how much real thinking goes on…” It’s terrifying that so many of us go through life almost completely on automatic, as if we’re still in mere survival mode. Work, watch TV, sleep, get up, work, etc…

      Yes, a friend of mine told me the same about the dreaded mental change at 25. It’s true! I saw a noticeable drop in my thinking, I have to do it consciously. I have to push, and claw, and force myself into habits with much more effort than I did in the early 20’s. But it is so worth it!

      Barter system sounds swell. 😉

  2. Astute observations; and you pretty much pointed to why that is. The routine of just normal life can compete with thinking time, especially in the good ol’ US of A, where the rat race for some can mean working double shift and running yourself so ragged you have no energy left to think. I just (last week) met a sweet, smart, black young lady from South Africa, who became a bank manager in Albany. Though she was very successful, she wanted to go back to Africa, where the lifestyle actually allowed her to live a ‘slowed down’ life style. Personally, I’m checking out options for a simpler life, which gives lots of leeway for rich life experiences and serving others who are less fortunate. There still are ways of doing that in some parts of America. Not so easy in NY!

    • I agree, 100%. I’ve only just recently in the past 2 years absorbed the true importance of saving money and living debt free. I’ve been on the road to financial freedom and stability since then, but not at all yet to the point of too much comfort. I still have to work 6 days a week, and run myself ragged, as you said.

      I have heard way too much about NY and its difficulties… I wish it wasn’t so!

      • If you’ve learned how to live within your means you are way ahead of almost everyone else, including me. So far for me it’s head knowledge, but my will has not co-operated. It’s a good thing June and I have great jobs, or we’d never make the payments. The problem is, especially with a bigger family, all of the worst expenses come when you’re ability to pay for them is the worst. And when you want the best for your family, sometimes you can rationalize ‘temporary’ debt. ‘Temporary’ ends up being a relative term. Now I look at it this way. Since my tax burden is well over 50%, every time I save a dollar it’s worth more than making 2 dollars, not counting the interest I’m saving on my mortgage, which is more than the loan amount. So counting that, every time I save a dollar it’s like making 4. That’s how you pull ahead. I’m really glad to hear you aren’t repeating my mistake, because it has life-long consequences!!

      • Oh, I still have a far way to go! However, one of the thing Brad and I are absolutely adamant on having is an “Emergency Fund.” If we didn’t have it, we wouldn’t have both been able to go to NY for a death on my dad’s side this past Summer. The freedom that having that fund, and being able to go to the funeral did for us…. We can never ever unlearn the lesson of needing to have one.

        Our next goal is eradicating our debts… which… I’m sure you know, is like an uphill battle sometimes. Like you said with your mortgage? The interest on student loans is… beyond absurd. It’s straight robbery.

        But I’m still learning. It’s not easy, and as you aptly convey…. feels like there is far too much in place to prevent us from all “getting there.”

  3. Every time I hear or read the phrase “penny for your thoughts” I now end up with a country song in my head. That song “If I Die Young” by the Band Perry. ARGH — I’m going to have country music in my head for hours and I’m personally holding YOU responsible!

    • I’m not much of a Country person, but pretty song (and voice of that lady!). Albeit the message of it… I just can’t quite grasp. 😛

      Pray tell, why does it remind you of the song? I don’t recall hearing the phrase therein. Do share the connection! lol

      I shall now have to drown that song out of my head with…. well, something different. Arg. Karma, I suppose?

    • Gar! I’m retarded and should have looked before typing. It sure is in the song! “Oh, no, I’ll sell ’em for a dollar”

      ….am I strange for taking this song as entirely pretentiously self-centered? Always heard it that way…

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