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How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:05 pm UTC
by Himself
I found a 1/2 French franc coin in my car in the US. The Franc was discontinued in 2002 in favor of the Euro, while the car is a 2010 model. Neither I nor my father who owned it previously have been to France; at least not in the past 15 years. Could it have somehow circulated among US coins all this time without anyone noticing?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:10 pm UTC
by Ginger
Well, sometimes I get Canadian coins, and I never ever go to Canada. So maybe maybe?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 12:24 am UTC
by Himself
True, but those coins are still legal tender in Canada. This was discontinued and it doesn't quite match the size of any U.S. coin.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 2:35 am UTC
by Soupspoon
Have you read "Reaper Man", by Terry Pratchett? Something similar to the Snow Globe eggs?

(Or just a divine gift, like the things that the Goddess Anoia possibly brings into existence to stop drawers opening.)

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 7:08 am UTC
by Himself
Soupspoon wrote:Have you read "Reaper Man", by Terry Pratchett? Something similar to the Snow Globe eggs?

(Or just a divine gift, like the things that the Goddess Anoia possibly brings into existence to stop drawers opening.)


Unfortunately I'm not versed in the works of Terry Pratchett. But if we're having fun speculating, perhaps and alternate timeline where France continued to rule eastern North America?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 11:15 am UTC
by somitomi
OOPART?
Lucky coin of a worker in a car factory?
Someone playing tricks?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 2:21 pm UTC
by DavidSh
I know I keep coins from old foreign trips. Occasionally they work themselves back into my pockets. If you or your father ever gave a ride to somebody else with such a coin, it could have fallen out of a pocket.

Also note that, before the Euro, Francs were also in use in the French islands in the Caribbean.

What is the year on the coin?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 4:28 pm UTC
by Himself
The year on the coin is 1992. I looked it up and it doesn't look like it's worth much to coin collectors. I keep change in the console but that would suggest the coin was circulating despite not really matching any U.S. coin.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 5:44 pm UTC
by commodorejohn
It was planted there as a cryptic clue by a field agent for a shadowy organization opposing the world-conquering aims of another, shadowier organization, in a desperate attempt to draw you into a web of conspiracy, a life on the run, and maybe, just maybe, the love of a lifetime.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 02, 2018 11:29 am UTC
by Ginger
A discontinue French criminal on the lam from cops and judges hid his last stolen coin in Your Car... years and years... ago. <3 :)

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:34 pm UTC
by Yablo
Himself wrote:I found a 1/2 French franc coin in my car in the US. The Franc was discontinued in 2002 in favor of the Euro, while the car is a 2010 model. Neither I nor my father who owned it previously have been to France; at least not in the past 15 years. Could it have somehow circulated among US coins all this time without anyone noticing?

Is your Flux Capacitor working?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 4:36 am UTC
by teelo
I'm not saying it was aliens, but... it was aliens.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 4:46 am UTC
by Ginger
A common excuses for, like, when Catholic teenage girls does something sexy/naughty and or bad: "Lucifer Morningstar put the discontinued French coin in your car."

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:21 am UTC
by Zamfir
Lots of unrealistic explanations here. Let's be reasonable, it's likely just a piece of metal that accidentally got eroded in the shape of a franc. Happens a lot with Jesus.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 8:51 am UTC
by Mutex
What kind of car is it? A Delorean?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 11:03 am UTC
by Soupspoon
Zamfir wrote:Lots of unrealistic explanations here. Let's be reasonable, it's likely just a piece of metal that accidentally got eroded in the shape of a franc. Happens a lot with Jesus.

Jesus gets eroded into the shape of a franc? Oh such fickle flesh!

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 11:35 am UTC
by Mutex
Soupspoon wrote:
Zamfir wrote:Lots of unrealistic explanations here. Let's be reasonable, it's likely just a piece of metal that accidentally got eroded in the shape of a franc. Happens a lot with Jesus.

Jesus gets eroded into the shape of a franc? Oh such fickle flesh!

A side effect of being given franc and cents as a baby.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 1:21 pm UTC
by Soupspoon
Mutex wrote:
Soupspoon wrote:
Zamfir wrote:Lots of unrealistic explanations here. Let's be reasonable, it's likely just a piece of metal that accidentally got eroded in the shape of a franc. Happens a lot with Jesus.

Jesus gets eroded into the shape of a franc? Oh such fickle flesh!

A side effect of being given franc and cents as a baby.

That response is either gold or... meh.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 4:30 pm UTC
by freezeblade
Mutex wrote:
Soupspoon wrote:
Zamfir wrote:Lots of unrealistic explanations here. Let's be reasonable, it's likely just a piece of metal that accidentally got eroded in the shape of a franc. Happens a lot with Jesus.

Jesus gets eroded into the shape of a franc? Oh such fickle flesh!

A side effect of being given franc and cents as a baby.


I audibly groaned at this, at work. Nice setup for the pun.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Wed Feb 07, 2018 6:29 am UTC
by Himself
Yablo wrote:
Himself wrote:I found a 1/2 French franc coin in my car in the US. The Franc was discontinued in 2002 in favor of the Euro, while the car is a 2010 model. Neither I nor my father who owned it previously have been to France; at least not in the past 15 years. Could it have somehow circulated among US coins all this time without anyone noticing?

Is your Flux Capacitor working?


Should I get that checked?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Wed Feb 07, 2018 7:22 am UTC
by Seven
commodorejohn wrote:It was planted there as a cryptic clue by a field agent for a shadowy organization opposing the world-conquering aims of another, shadowier organization, in a desperate attempt to draw you into a web of conspiracy, a life on the run, and maybe, just maybe, the love of a lifetime.

So, ah, where exactly in the car was this coin found???

freezeblade wrote:
Mutex wrote:
Soupspoon wrote:
Zamfir wrote:Lots of unrealistic explanations here. Let's be reasonable, it's likely just a piece of metal that accidentally got eroded in the shape of a franc. Happens a lot with Jesus.

Jesus gets eroded into the shape of a franc? Oh such fickle flesh!

A side effect of being given franc and cents as a baby.


I audibly groaned at this, at work. Nice setup for the pun.
Same. Geeze.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Wed Feb 07, 2018 7:51 pm UTC
by Ginger
Okay, okay: What if? Jesus was... a discontinue Frenchman, not Jewish or Middle Eastern, and... he put the discontinued Franc in the man's car?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:27 pm UTC
by moody7277
Ginger wrote:Okay, okay: What if? Jesus was... a discontinue Frenchman, not Jewish or Middle Eastern, and... he put the discontinued Franc in the man's car?


We're getting into "Holy Blood, Holy Grail" territory here, including Merovingians and Rennes les Chateau.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 4:44 pm UTC
by Zamfir
Nono, He Himself clearly says:
Neither I nor My Father have been to France

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:04 pm UTC
by Yablo
Neither he nor his father, sure, but he cleverly leaves out the travel status of the car itself. Was it ever out of sight long enough to make the round-trip? There could be an '80s-style Disney movie plot in there somewhere.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 6:37 pm UTC
by Soupspoon
The Father, The Son and the Holy Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost..?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:52 am UTC
by DavidSh
To get from the US to any part of France, it would either have to drive on water, or travel as freight. (There is not a continuous road from the US to French Guiana, and no car ferry to St. Pierre & Miquelon from anywhere.)

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:18 am UTC
by Pfhorrest
I think a better line of inquiry would be: have either of you ever had any passengers who might have had reason to be in possession of such a coin?

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 2:20 am UTC
by ucim
Pfhorrest wrote:I think a better line of inquiry would be: have either of you ever had any passengers who might have had reason to be in possession of such a coin?
Now that's just crazy thinking! :)

Jose

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 6:41 am UTC
by Yablo
DavidSh wrote:To get from the US to any part of France, it would either have to drive on water, or travel as freight. (There is not a continuous road from the US to French Guiana, and no car ferry to St. Pierre & Miquelon from anywhere.)

True, but if he's got his Flux Capacitor working, all he'd need would be a Mr. Fusion.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 8:41 am UTC
by Pfhorrest
The flying circuits are unrelated to the flux capacitor (other than both being powered by Mr. Fusion).

Or are you suggesting that he somehow use time travel to circumvent the distance barriers? Like going back in time to when there wasn't an ocean between (what would become) America and France, and then driving there, and then going back to the future? Because I think that would pose even more problems.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 9:22 am UTC
by svenman
For many years, I used to carry a discontinued German coin in my wallet because it was useful for shopping carts. Didn't take that along on transatlantic trips, though.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 3:36 pm UTC
by ucim
svenman wrote:For many years, I used to carry a discontinued German coin in my wallet because it was useful for shopping carts.
In what way? Enquiring minds need to know!

Jose

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 4:17 pm UTC
by Soupspoon
(Serious answer, assuming you haven't seen this) Because there are shopping carts that require a coin to unlock the chain attaching it to the next trolley in, in a docked stack, or the wall-chain to which such a docked stack is ultimately tethered, to prevent casual abandonment. The coin is returned upon replugging into the chain, meaning that it acts as a 'take with you' deposit. You could use tools to prise it back out (though the recepticle is designed to very tough) or take-and-abandon a whole lot of trolleys and recover the coin from all but one of them by creating your own chained-stack, or even just accept that for the cost of £1 (as it typically is over here) for a trolley that you have 'bought' for your own beyond-the-supermarket purposes is worth it, with the option of returning it whenever you want if you didn't just chuck it in a canal or abandon it in the middle of nowhere.

But, really, it's just a discourager of casually wandering off beyond the bounds of the supermarket car-park without some intention of bringing it straight back. You can't even pinch the coins from trolleys, because it's yours. If you take the trolleys back that somebody else has abandoned to recover their unconsidered coin, then the supermarket has had the trolley returned, and that could be considered a finder's fee.

There are even charities who sell a coin-sized piece of metal (branded to their charity) in an key-ring holder or somesuch, that you can use in the stead of the coin. You can't accidentally spend it, so it's always with you when you suddenly realise you need something to unlock a trolley, and you get it back when you're finished with it if you resist passing it on to someone with two 50p coins and a plaintiff look, who would swap their £1 total cash for your supposed £1-worth of cart. Has the same sort of usefulness, otherwise, as buying a charity wristband, only slightly less outwardly visible for the charity-kudos.

Though I've noted that these things have largely dissappeared from UK supermarkets, these days, in favour of depositless trolleys like they used to be (give or take any tricks they have hidden in their wheels, like some seem to have). That's even before the recent change of the £1 coin to the newer bimetal 12-sided version (which is still needed to, operate "trolley box" doors in a couple of places, where a fully loaded trolley can be stored temporatily whilst you go off into the cafe/wait for the family member with the car to turn up/whatever, and required Customer Services to keep a float of the old coin to be used - swapping for a new coin, at the human end of the equation) so hasn't required mass.mechanical conversion. I don't know if that's because they never really worked enough to prevent the determined trolley-thief or just because it was never simple enough for the honest public to get used to.

(Silly answer) it's why you get loads of drunken shopping carts. They ask for coins, they buy some high-strength 'foreign' lager with them and then end up annoying everyone, getting in their way, sitting in doorways and begging for more.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 4:49 pm UTC
by ucim
Thanks - I didn't know that. Over here, shopping carts are free and untethered, but airport "smart carts" are rented for about $5, which you do not get back. Occasionally you can find stray "smart carts" you can use for free, but the one time I needed one, I had to pay full price.

Jose

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 5:47 pm UTC
by freezeblade
Interesting. Here they have a device on one of the "trolley" (carts here) wheels which lock in place once they are taken beyond the confines of the parking lot (there's typically a yellow line denoting the "do not pass" zone). If you pass the cart over the boundaries of the parking lot, the wheel will lock and the cart will be stopped dead.

I kind of wonder if this system was put in place instead of the coin-op system because the difference in coin denominations in common circulation here. You rarely see any coin with a denomination larger than a $0.25 piece, which is likely too small of an amount for an acceptable deposit to keep people from taking the carts.

By the end of business day you'll see a graveyard of carts which are rendered immovable just outside the painted line, which I assume is a pain in the arse for whatever employee has to deal with it.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 6:23 pm UTC
by Yablo
Pfhorrest wrote:The flying circuits are unrelated to the flux capacitor (other than both being powered by Mr. Fusion).

Or are you suggesting that he somehow use time travel to circumvent the distance barriers? Like going back in time to when there wasn't an ocean between (what would become) America and France, and then driving there, and then going back to the future? Because I think that would pose even more problems.


The flux capacitor is necessary to explain the presence of a coin discontinued in 2002 in a car manufactured in 2010. Time travel is the only way to get that coin from the past to the present.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Fri Feb 09, 2018 11:49 pm UTC
by svenman
ucim wrote:
svenman wrote:For many years, I used to carry a discontinued German coin in my wallet because it was useful for shopping carts.
In what way? Enquiring minds need to know!

Jose

Soupspoon already explained the principle really well (thanks). The same method continues to be in widespread use in Germany, where I live. Sorry for assuming that it would be universally used around the world and no background explanation would be required.

Until the 1990s, 1 DEM coins were commonly used for that purpose in Germany. In preparation for the changeover to Euro currency in 2002, those locking mechanism on the carts were modified so that they would accept both old DEM and new Euro coins, and in my experience it continued to work this way well into the 2010s (even on shopping carts newer than 2002, because their locking mechanisms were still produced from the same generation of moulds that the entire industry had introduced in the years leading up to 2002). I had somehow managed to retain that single 1 DEM coin, which remained in my wallet reliably now that it no longer was legal tender and therefore at risk of being spent.

Yablo wrote:The flux capacitor is necessary to explain the presence of a coin discontinued in 2002 in a car manufactured in 2010. Time travel is the only way to get that coin from the past to the present.

That, however, is quite readily achieved with the one kind of time travel that does not require a flux capacitor, or any kind of particular device at all.

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 10:34 pm UTC
by ThirdParty
I've seen the kind of shopping carts you're describing, here in the US. Except here they take quarters (25¢-pieces) rather than euros.

... But I've only seen them at Aldi, which I think is a German supermarket chain trying to expand to the US. (Or rather, one that has succeeded in expanding to the US: I've seen it in two or three completely different parts of the country.) Maybe they just haven't quite figured out how weird their shopping cart deposits feel to Americans.

(My local Aldi recently reversed its "no credit cards" policy, which was another thing that felt foreign about it. Whoever heard of a store that didn't accept credit cards? Anyway, if they just get rid of the shopping cart deposits, and start giving out free grocery bags with people's purchases, they'll probably be able to start passing for a normal 'Merican chain.)

Re: How did a discontinued foreign coin end up in my car?

Posted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 11:17 pm UTC
by Soupspoon
The trend in Europe (or at least in the UK, for what that's worth, but I suspect it's a policy development on the mainland continent too) is to start charging for (plastic) bags, to reduce one-use-then-discard-any-old-how practices.

(I have at least one bag-for-life for each different supermarket chain I deliberately visit more than twice a month, which I try not to cross-brand lest they each discover I may have been having a relationship with one or more of the others. And I still have loads of single-use bags that I singly-used prior to the charge, then put into (a bag of their own kind in) a cupboard in order to use… somehow… at a later date. Using them as bin liners for small bins doesn't even use/waste them enough, 'cos I only rarely bin things so messy that I need to tie up that mini-bin-bag and throw it away (as opposed to dumping only the contents into the main bin) or damage it. So I fully expect my personal hoarded supply to outlast the holocene.)