One of Our 50 Is Missing - June 2012

After more than two decades, thousands of you have shared their experiences of lost New Mexico in the "One of Our 50 is Missing" humor column. Tell us your experiences at fifty@nmmagazine.com.

Bank Shot
Peter Johnson, of White Rock, recently moved to western New York for school, but kept his New Mexico bank. Moving into his new house entailed the standard payment of the first and last months’ rent, but he didn’t interact with the landlord for nearly two months. When he went to pay his rent in person, the landlord told him his last check took nearly a month to clear. When the landlord asked the bank why, the four young women working on the matter said they weren’t sure what the exchange rate was or what currency to use. The landlord vaguely remembered that New Mexico was a state, but with four college-educated women having this debate, he began to wonder if he’d taken a bad check from a foreign national. Fortunately, before Johnson was evicted, deported, or charged a foreign-currency rate, another bank customer pointed out that there was little need to figure out the exchange rate between two U.S. states. Apparently, she had to sing that “Fifty Nifty” song to settle the matter.
The Fog of War
Jim Jenson, of Princeton, New Jersey, was reading Memoirs of the Second World War, by Winston S. Churchill, when he discovered this passage: “On July 17, 1945, world-shaking news had arrived. In the afternoon Stimson called at my abode and laid before me a sheet of paper on which was written, ‘Babies satisfactorily born.’ By his manner I saw something extraordinary had happened. ‘It means,’ he said, ‘that the experiment in the Mexican desert has come off. The atomic bomb is a reality.’ ”