I guess I might be an anomally. Not a beginning lifter,but certainly no expert.
With regard to squatting down and picking something up,I generally never squat down for a dime,pen,whatever. I will get down on one knee.
Perhaps its a flexibility issue,or muscular weakness,core,quads,hams,who knows. Even as narrow as shoulder width,I either squat on my toes,or I don't hit parralel and end up leaning forward or falling on my butt. Wide stance low bar is best for me at this time,even though its opposite of what most raw guys do.
With that said,I am making it a point to work on narrow stance squats as an assistance.
I spend all night scared of tomorrow, only reason I aint killin, suns up, when it gets dark im back to the park, cut through the back im after the heart, creepin through your hallway with a knife, had it all planned, therapist callin me all day, I know you love it when I eat meat, I love it when the brains hit the concrete!