We often think of the 'calm before the storm', but rarely do we recognize or even witness the 'calm after the storm'. This sunset occurred less than an hour after a severe storm, near Otter Falls, MB, that brought down a hundred trees near a cabin we had rented. The clouds became soft like cotton balls (mammatus clouds) and the sky was at peace.
With the sand sliding between our toes, and walking hand in hand, there was no thoughts of #tweets, #likes or #snapchats.
Wheres George and Angelina Jolie
Please read to the end for the surprise Angelina Jolie twist…
So there I was, hanging with the family on short vacation, paying for those insidious Happy Meals at an undisclosed location in Grand Forks, ND. Then it happened… the counter girl handed me my change, with a smile. As I was about to stuff the bills in my wallet and go stuff my face, the red ink stamped next to George Washington jumped out at me. I was intrigued, curious and wondered what mysterious message awaited my discovery.
For a brief moment, I felt had just won a mini lottery until I read the following message: See where I’ve been Track where I go next www.wheresgeorge.com A little deflated, I cursed my decision to not bring my laptop on the family vacation, but having to wait a few days to check this out probably added to the excitement. Honestly, I thought I was seeing a knew viral marketing tactic with America’s best viral medium… money! Who was behind this? The movie industry, an ingenious charity, the US Government… I was wrong, wrong, way wrong!
After getting home and pulling up www.wheresgeorge.com I discovered the United States Currency Tracking Experiment has been going on for more than 10 years (where have I been!!!), and exactly as the message suggests it is designed for the curious at heart to track where a bill has been and after you release it back into the world, where it will go next.
So today, wanting to know the history of this particular George Washington, I signed up at the site and entered in the serial number, current location of the dollar bill I had found and short little story. In hopes, that I would discover a vast history that I have so vividly imagined. Of course, this bill must have traveled thousands of miles, and touched the hands of Angelina Jolie in Hollywood, passed though the casinos of Las Vegas, and worked its was north by some hitch hiker who was trying to get home to see the love her life, and kept this last dollar to have a cheese burger at McDonalds while she waited for her long lost love to come pick her up where they first met .
So it turns out, this bill has travelled a measly 337 Miles, from Minnesota, USA to Manitoba, Canada in a little over a year. A big, big Yawn! But that doesn’t mean the story ends here. Here is the Angelina Jolie twist. Let’s give this George Washington fellow a real trip. If anyone reading this on the other side of the world, or at least not in North America, has a great cause to support… I’m buying!!!! Your cause will get the Wheres George 1$ bill and I will throw in an additional $100. Just reply to this post, and we can work out the details via email. I will continue to update this story as it unfolds!
Maybe we can eventually get this bill to Angelina Jolie or to someone who will help change the world with it, or at least give this George Washington guy a little sexier ending than 337 measly miles and a McDonalds Happy Meal. According to their site WheresGeorge.com hasn’t made the news in 6 years, and their blog hasn’t seen a fresh post in 2 years. Maybe its time the owners and the estimated 50,000+ registered users of www.wheresgeorge.com start using those dollars to help out those who are less fortunate, and see just how viral money can be when it has some good karma attached to it.
Update # 001- Thursday, July 31/2008 – Wheres George user Amy stopped by and straightened me out on a few things, namely not exposing the serial number of a bill. That was confirmed when a few minutes later came from none other than Hank Eskin, the creator of WheresGeorge.com (pasted in a comment below)! So NO, requests for a charity on the other side of the world yet, but as per Amy I will be heading over to the Wheres George forum to see the users section devoted to Charity. Kudos to Amy for helping raise money for Breast Cancer.
This post will continue to be updated as it develops.