CORRECTION: Andrew Russell, communications manager at Time Warner Cable, has corrected a couple of factual errors in yesterday’s column regarding the conversion to digital TV, which will be taking place Oct. 19.

All customers, even those with Basic programming, will need either a digital adapter or a set-top box to continue receiving their channels. The only exception is those with a newer TV with a built-in QAM tuner; that TV will continue to receive the Basic channel lineup without an adapter or set top box.

Additionally, Time Warner Cable does not require customers to sign contracts.

More information is available at

DEAR SUN SPOTS: Does anyone out there know where I can purchase the bra name brand called Firtitude? I hope someone knows. They are the most comfortable one I have ever worn. I had found this one at the Spare Closet in Casco. — Joanne via email

ANSWER: It took Sun Spots a couple of Googles to realize that it’s “Flirtitude” not “Firtitude.” The name makes sense once you look at the bras because they have some very eye-catching designs on the fabric.


According to the Web, you can buy them at JCPenney, which was having a sale on them when Sun Spots checked prices. They are also available at numerous online sites.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: Recently, I saw an ad in your paper that listed a cosmetic dermatology practice in the Auburn-Lewiston area. Could you find the contact information for me? Thank you for your help. — Pamela, [email protected]

ANSWER: The only business the Sun Journal’s advertising department had on file is the Cosmetic Enhancement Center of New England which recently opened an office in Auburn (35 Vernon St., 761-0177, They are also in Portland.

In addition, a recent Noteworthy item on the Business page noted that Franklin Health Dermatology (779-2410) will be moving to new offices on the second floor of the Franklin Health Medical Arts Center on the Franklin Memorial Hospital campus.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: A while back I went to a bank on Minot Avenue in Auburn to get some change for $10. I was asked if I had an account with them. My answer was no. I was therefore refused change for a United States $10 bill.

This week I went to a bank on Court Street and wanted change for a $20 bill. Once again I was told that I had to have an account with them in order for them to honor my request.


There are special pens that are used to determine the legality of U.S. currency. It was not like I wanted change for a large amount of money. It is stated on the face of all monies that, “This Note Is Legal Tender For All Debts, Public and Private,” signed by Secretary of Treasury Timothy Geithner of these United States of America.

What is the problem with the so-called higher-ups that they refuse to give change for legal tender of these United States? It is pretty sad, and I would like to know what the reason is for this practice from both banks. — No Name via email

ANSWER: The key word in the phrase you quote, “This Note Is Legal Tender For All Debts, Public and Private,” is “Debt.” This means that if you owe someone money, or want to buy something they are willing to sell, that they have to accept your dollars in payment of that debt. It does not require businesses to provide you a service or accept you as a customer.

Banks are a business (albeit one that makes money off money) with buildings and staff and office supplies to pay for. Giving you change does not generate any revenue for the bank, takes up the teller’s time and, for larger change requests, might eat into their current supplies of a particular form of currency. Thus the across the board rule of “no change” for noncustomers, even if those requests are small.

Also, they do run the risk of accepting counterfeit money. While there are techniques (such as the pen you mention) to determine if money is real or not, counterfeiters are constantly working to improve the quality of their product, so no technique will be 100 percent foolproof. While it would be nice if the banks had agreed to give you change — and some do — they are not required to do so by law.

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name (we won’t use it if you ask us not to). Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be e-mailed to [email protected]

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