While in the Philadelphia airport at an Air Canada ticket counter (waiting to be booked onto a new flight after my flight was cancelled due to bad weather), I saw something which economic theorists say should not exist (e.g. go to http://netec.mcc.ac.uk/JokEc.html and search for “someone would have picked it up!”).


I do not know who dropped it.  I waited for somebody else to notice it and, for the 20 minutes until I got to the front of the line, nobody did.

So, what does it mean?

Less than you might think.  It was a Canadian $20 bill, in the U.S.  And everybody was stressed out from the weather while trying to figure out hotels and flight plans and luggage and stuff.

Maybe, the lesson should be that you can find money on the ground just waiting to be picked up by the first good-looking person who comes along, but that person needs to be able to exchange currencies and everybody else needs to be focused on something else.  It was very surprising.