Change Makes Cents

By Caleigh LeGrand

I sometimes superstitiously pick up change I find on the ground.

On a morning shortly after February 4th, 2013 – the day the Canadian government discontinued the penny’s minting and distribution – I was walking to one of my regular coffee shops to write, when one of my country’s devalued copper coins caught my eye.

I froze, contemplating whether or not I should bother to pick up the penny. What good was it if it was no longer currency? Regardless, I habitually picked up the money, but this time decided to conduct my own personal hope-for-luck experiment. After all, I thought, why wouldn’t the penny’s folklore luck tenfold the day it became useful for nothing else?

Good tidings it brought. That morning, I didn’t spend a cent; three people bought me coffee. That evening, I met a businessman who went on to help me land a role in a feature film with an actor I admire.

Admittedly, I’d consider myself slightly delusional were I to simply attribute these happenings to the likes of a ductile, metallic element. But I do believe a correlation exists between my being open to picking up the penny and my being open to a more general invitation to new opportunities in life. The magical connection is found in the power of a three-letter word: yes.

‘Yes’ is a word I learned in my improv studies at Second City. ‘Yes’ brought me to a film set to shoot a scene with James Caan; ‘yes’ brought me to a comedy stage to perform live improv with Colin Mochrie; ‘yes’ brought me to love every twist and turn life has to offer.

While ‘no (thank you)’ contains the power to cut you off from certain potentials, ‘yes’ derails a major obstacle that continually rears its ugly head in front of everything pretty: it gets you over yourself and allows you to find new potential by removing self-doubt as a playing card.

Sure, you’ll always find struggle, but, “the fun is always on the other side of a yes.” Just ask comedian Tina Fey and take a look at what this tiny word has done for both her career and personal life (http://www.oprah.com/spirit/Tina-Feys-AHA-Moment).

Currency changes. So will your current situation. I promise. I also promise that no matter what change you happen to find on your way to the coffee shop, you are ductile enough to undergo any transformation without breaking (just like a penny!) And if you embrace “yes”, you’ll look back and wonder how you got to be so lucky. Make cents?

CaleighLeGrand

 

Caleigh Le Grand is an actor and writer living in Toronto.

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One Response to “Change Makes Cents

  • Great article and enjoyed reading it. I can’t agree more with the power “Yes” holds. Until we took the improv course taught by JG we were, as I call now “No Buts”. Now we are 95% “Yes Ands”. That 5%, well, hard to break what you knew and we can’t agree on everything…..that would be no challenge. After re-arranging my thoughts auditions became easier. Used to go in with the “No soup for you” attitude, being very militant with a “I won’t get this” way of thinking. Now I go in being me and very relaxed, I do just as well there as I do on the way home and have landed a couple.
    Anyway thanks for the refresher Caleigh and congrats on your part and future roles. The penny may have helped but a positive attitude is the copper in my pocket. Happy Trails Barn-Out…….maybe one day we will shake hands….

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