Unnamed feature #1: Greenbacks vs. monopoly money

Time to get real here on the blog. I’ve written a bunch of Vernacular Spectacular posts that have compared different ways that Australia and the US say things. But there’s also all the differences between life in Oz and America that aren’t just a matter of words. I don’t know what to call this feature yet. Probably some play on whether, compared to the US, the country Oz is more like the utopic Judy-Garland Oz or like the HBO-series prison Oz.

Let’s start with the money. Or at least the bills, coins maybe deserve their own posts. Australia is like Europe where every denomination is a different color. It’s also a different length, to help the blind, although I didn’t notice that until somebody pointed it out. American money is not as uniform as it used to be, as a result of various efforts to dissuade counterfeiters, but it’s still far from Rainbow In Your Wallet.

This one is pretty easy. If the US already had colored money, no way would they switch to a system where the bills looked so much alike. There would be news stories about how people accidentally thought gave somebody $50 thinking it was a $5, and on and on. I would predict that it’s only a matter of time before the US moves to colored money, but of course it’s really just a matter of time before everywhere goes cashless.

Jeremy’s winner: Oz (No suspense, sorry. Maybe this wasn’t the best one to start with. Or maybe it will turn out that my opinions about these things tend to be more one-sided than the language differences.)

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