That Elusive Nickle

That Elusive Nickle

That Elusive Nickle

I am pretty sure the first time I heard this very common line, “If I had a nickel for every time I,” and then it goes on with something that you do over and over and over again, it was my mom making the wish. Her life was so busy that I would bet those nickels would have added up to mountains of nickels. Yes, I have said it too. So me being me thought about all my nickel wishes. I bet a nickel you will see a few nickels of yours in mine.

Oh if I only had a nickel for every weed I ever bent over and pulled. In years gone by I pulled weeds in rock gardens and real gardens and graveled yards and flower beds. None of which I enjoyed. Then, just yesterday I read where now someone has reported that a dandelion is such a wonderful weed. It does so much for the environment and bugs because it comes to life so early in the spring. The report touted that we should not ever pull, push, pick or prune a dandelion. I’m here to tell you that if a dandelion comes up within picking reach of me? It’s a dead dandelion. Yes, nickels galore for dandelions.

One nickel please for every time I had to pick something up off the floor that I threw at the garbage but missed. Why is it that I cannot learn to take that tiny extra step towards the garbage in my kitchen or bathroom or bedroom or shop or garage before I let go of whatever it is I am throwing away? I know I have said this before but it bears repeating. When I miss the trash and have to pick whatever it is up, I think and feel for my mom. I would bet a nickel she picked up at least a ton of stuff her family threw at the trash, missed and just walked away. Knowing “somebody else” aka mom, would pick it up. Come on. We’ve all done it. So, I wish I had a nickel for everything not only I, but. Yes a falling down “but.” A nickel for everything my mom and I have had to pick up around the trash.

 I’d take a nickel for every time I vacuumed for half an hour before I realized the bag was full and nothing was getting picked up. This really burns me. I could go the rest of my life and never vacuum again. Maybe it’s because it is such a weird way to spell a word. I mean come on, vacuum? Really? A word with a double “u?” It’s a necessary house cleaning thing though, vacuuming. I found this when still living at home I was cleaning up after the Christmas tree was removed. Vacuuming up the pine needles I wasn’t getting anywhere. I stopped, opened the suck-o-matic machine to find a bag so full it couldn’t hold any more it was so stuffed. The poor machine kept sucking up stuff to where it even completely filled the hose. I’d bet one nickel it took me an hour to clean out that poor machine. So, yes I’d take a nickel for every time I have checked the bag first.

I’d love to have a nickel for every time I have put a key in a vehicle to start it and wondered what I would do if it didn’t start. This one may just be me. It happens mostly in the winter. You know when you turn the key and you get a grunt from the engine but then it sparks to life and you forget the fear of being stranded. Until the next time. It doesn’t happen every time, just enough that I know I would have a huge pile of nickels from this one thing.

I wish I had a nickel for every cat and every kitten I have raised and given away. I love baby kittens. All of the cats here are outside and I have enough to know I will never have a mouse in my house. I have over the years had two or more momma cats combine their offspring to create a passel of meowing little faces. I remember having people come and look in a big box of mommas and kittens with amazement. Knowing I had the best kittens to choose from. Yes a nickel for each please. 

There are so many nickel times in life. Not to mention I would take a nickel for every time in this story I had to go back and fix my spelling from nickle to nickel. AARRGGHH

Trina lives in Eureka, Nevada. Her funny book, “They Call Me Weener” is available on line or email her at to get a signed copy.