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Burnin’ Dollar Bills, Y’all!

Burnin’ Dollar Bills, Y’all!

by Greg on November 18, 2011

Last week I published a post that gave people the impression that we had to declare bankruptcy due to financial ruin.

While I felt bad that I had caused so much unnecessary worry, I must admit that all the concern actually felt pretty good. It meant people cared.

Still, I want people to know that we’re fine. Our house is still standing but for a few kitchen cabinets about to lose their battle with gravity, the lights are still on (usually all of them), and our kids aren’t starving. Well, to hear them tell it, they ARE starving because our lopsided cupboards are severely lacking in preservatives and artificial flavors.

Money has never really been all that important to us. Sure, we love having it, but we don’t obsess over trading precious life hours to acquire more than we need. While we’re not affluent, we’re not destitute either. But I realize that my post gave people’s tickers a bit of a jolt.

I was talking with Heather about how we can assure people that we’re okay without publishing bank records, and then it hit me. We’ll do what rich folks do when they want to ostentatiously demonstrate just how rich they are and just how little money means to them. We’ll burn some bucks in defiance.

Fearing it was a Federal crime to destroy money, we felt it best to enlist the help of a minor who didn’t know any better. As luck would have it, my sister’s family was visiting for the weekend and my 2-year old nephew was all too willing to help an uncle out. And with that, the proof was captured in a photo.

So, tell me this. If we were irresponsible and broke, would we dare let our hard-earned money go up in flames like this? I think not.

Oh, and before you all write about how worried you are over this photo, understand that there’s plenty more Washingtons where this came from.

Don't freak out. I was an arm's length away the entire time.


Fireproof Disclaimer: My wife is afraid that people are going to freak out and go completely nuts over the photo of our nephew burnin’ a dollar. People can get pretty protective when it comes to money.

So, while I wanted the post to stay as-is, I suppose it’s best to prove that I enlisted the help of Photoshop to burn currency, and not an unsuspecting toddler as I originally claimed.

It’s for the best. The world doesn’t need another fake photo scandal and we certainly don’t need any knocks on our door. Especially after that whole parking lot incident.

Where there's smoke, there's fire. Or is it vice versa? Either way, here's the shot.

Pre-mangled Bill

A Twofer! This provided both the flame and the burnt edges.

The original.
Was this captured movement not begging for Photoshop?

After bringing all the photos together, all it needed for a final touch of realism was a reflection of the flame in his eyes. That, and a post to infer that we don’t belong in the presence of children.

Oh, and before the uber-sensitive go bananas over him even holding a fire stick, note that even if he had the strength, dexterity, and finger length to try and activate it, it’s turned so he can’t. That and his bad uncle handed it to him just long enough to snap the incriminating photo.

I hate that this disclaimer even has to be written. The compulsion to remain P.C. sucks all the fun out of it. I’ll probably have him burn a copy of Miss Manners in protest.


Cat Davis November 18, 2011 at 10:54 pm

I know you said don’t freak out but I freaked out a bit … toddler … hand … BIG lighter …. scary! But I’m glad you’ve got money to burn 🙂

Rachel November 18, 2011 at 10:56 pm

Ha! Glad to know you’re financially okay to burn $1. 😉

Telling Dad November 18, 2011 at 11:51 pm

If you burn less than half then you can still exchange it. We’re not crazy.

valmg @ Mom Knows It All November 18, 2011 at 11:25 pm

I expected a photo of burning Monopoly money…

Telling Dad November 18, 2011 at 11:50 pm

Hahaha! That’s a good idea.

Amanda November 19, 2011 at 5:24 am

I didn’t freak out because those lighters are so hard to light, I can barely even get them to work to light our grill. I swear you need an engineering degree for 10 seconds of flame.

BenSpark November 19, 2011 at 5:31 am

I suspected PS right away. Yeah a P.C. world sucks but your disclaimers are great.

Alison November 19, 2011 at 7:01 am

I love the disclaimers too. Let’s dumb it down for folks ahaha

Erin@TheMomBuzz November 19, 2011 at 7:27 am

LOL! Agreed! We know you too well. 😉 But great post, pic and disclaimer.

Courtney November 19, 2011 at 6:01 am

Looks so real!

Alison November 19, 2011 at 7:01 am

I’m glad we don’t live too close to each other in the great state we live in. Cause my youngest is 2… who knows what trouble you would be making with him. 😉

Karen November 19, 2011 at 7:08 am

The photo was very realistic, but after reading your blog for the past few months, I knew right away it was photoshopped. Good idea, though.

MrsTellingDad November 19, 2011 at 7:55 am

I think they are on to you! You should just write about our life…they’ll never believe that. Well maybe, but at least I will get sympathy from your readers.

Faith.The Blond. November 19, 2011 at 9:35 am

You have my sympathy NOW Heather lol But we all love your big lug! You’re a lucky woman!!

MrsTellingDad November 19, 2011 at 7:59 am

This is Michael – maybe you could figure out if Lori will see this. If she does, she is going to freak !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 🙂

Lindsay November 19, 2011 at 10:15 am

That’s hilarious! Great work with PS, too!

Julianna November 19, 2011 at 10:24 am

“Fire stick.” Huh. I call them “lighter clicky thingies.” And the best part is that my brother knew EXACTLY what that was when he saw it on my Christmas wish list. He got me two! Y’all take care, now!

meg November 19, 2011 at 12:24 pm

never actually got to the “oh that’s photoshop..” but did think, wow, that is an amazing tot to be able to handle a lighter like that. i have trouble with them and i’m 41!

Missy November 19, 2011 at 4:22 pm

Its not like you don’t have a firetruck to put him out if anything happened………

Heather Head November 19, 2011 at 5:13 pm

Are you kidding? I think it ought to be a crime NOT to let your toddler burn things. I even wrote about it: http://curiositycat.wordpress.com/2011/07/28/playing-with-fire/

On the other hand, he did set my shed on fire recently:

So you probably shouldn’t take advice from me. But here it is anyway: Give the kid some matches and dry leaves. It’s fun.

Shop with Me Mama (Kim) November 19, 2011 at 5:25 pm

Now this is hilarious!!!!

Karen November 19, 2011 at 5:37 pm

I hate that we have to use disclaimers for the dumbest among us. Takes the fun out of everything.

LeeAnn November 19, 2011 at 7:02 pm

My middle son once threw away all of the money my husband had left on the dresser because it was dirty!

Emily November 19, 2011 at 7:41 pm

Never a worry, *I* can barely make those things work. Roll this, push that, squeeze here, turn to the left, say the magic word….repeat three times. Great shot! 🙂

Carrie November 19, 2011 at 8:36 pm

I’m with valmg up there…I so expected it to be Monopoly money.

And I really thought you’d go into stories of burning houses, shoes, hats and whatever other Monopoly pieces there are.

As you can see…it’s been years since I’ve played with Monopoly and it’s money.

Now, played with MY money? About 48 minutes ago.

Beth November 19, 2011 at 11:24 pm

This is genius and made me laugh a LOT!

Mrs Catch November 20, 2011 at 1:45 am

Hilarious and great photoshopping! I despair of figuring that program out. I admit I was one of the readers who had their heart stopped by your post. Glad to know you’re OK.

Bobbie {OneScrappyMom} November 20, 2011 at 5:38 pm

I love it! Great PS skills! LOL

Brian the Kwyjibo November 20, 2011 at 11:38 pm

You’ve got mad Photoshop skills!

“If we were irresponsible and broke, would we let our hard-earned money go up in flames like this?” No, not if you were broke. Now, disprove the suspicion of irresponsibility.

I like Missy’s comment. Perry is there, so what do you have to worry about?

Jessica Meats November 21, 2011 at 2:58 am

Great use of photoshop. That photo looks realistic enough to get an army of frantic busybodies making phonecalls. 🙂

At least you had a fire truck on standby if needed.

Melinda November 21, 2011 at 6:38 am

Impressive Photoshop skills! I couldn’t get close to that realism. I, too, thought you would burn a whole stack of Monopoly money. The precious Orange $500s.

awesomesauciness November 21, 2011 at 10:33 am

Pssssh….PC my Aunt Fanny!

Why I remember, fondly, as kids we’d ride bicycles without helmets, spend all day outside and not come in till dark, eat the mud pies we created, and light (and hold till we chickened out) firecrackers on the 4th of July.

Yes, we lived on the edge. I think more people should, but that’s just me.

Lesley November 21, 2011 at 3:54 pm

I hate those fire sticks. I’m 28 and I can’t even turn them on. So I’m sure that little boy was super safe! And super cute! Now I want to go burn a dollar. And WHY is it illegal? I mean if its your money…who the hell cares what you do with it! CA-RAZY! 😀

Claire November 22, 2011 at 12:32 pm

I think it is important to teach the young ones the value of money! Good parenting, kudos!! Hilarious, btw

Amanda November 22, 2011 at 9:32 pm

Even though it was fake, I was still freaking out that you were burning a dollar. I could use that extra dollar! (But really what freaked me out the most was the fact that your 2 year old nephew was burning it… Glad it was fake!)

Cho November 23, 2011 at 9:40 am

Holy cow, that looks so real! I wish I could photoshop as well as you xDDD (Actually, since I don’t have photoshop, I guess that would be pointless haha)

And, like multiple others apparently, I was expecting Monopoly money being burned xDDD

Jennifer @therebelchick November 25, 2011 at 4:33 pm

Maybe there is something wrong with me, but I was more concerned with a baby playing with fire than the fact that it’s illegal to burn US currency.
Hey, that $1 is probably only really worth 75 cents, anyway…

Lisa Brown November 25, 2011 at 6:02 pm

Alright… first the bankruptcy, then this?! You totally got me! Totally! You just seriously made my day!

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