Customer is what?

Dramatis Personae
[Strategist, Boy Two, Waitress, Boy One, food & TV]

It was the time the marketing strategy took in its stance a paradigm shift. When it was all Customer is King, he pitched Customer is Queen and it stuck. After all of late women filled the workplace, dug gadgets and were fast becoming geeks. It was also during this time a phenomenon by no means unique broke out. He knew it, witnessed it and ignored it.

Boy Two stood gunny bag in his hand this side of the fence. It was the time they quit eating out of garbage cans. Thanks to this woman, their lot has become so much better. Waitress stood with a tray in her hand on the other side. The boy helped himself to the leftovers and some more fresh food and the handbag grew half full. He’d usually leave after this but today he wanted to watch at least an over out of that gorgeously wall mounted HD screen. It after all was the finals. Our strategist who dined there happened to observe the peripheral goings-on.

He rose to his feet and gripped the railing of the fence. ‘Leave’ he said firmly to the boy. ‘Never again you be seen here.’ Whether or not he goes to school, what his parents are up to, he didn’t bother to ask. The affluent customers clapped. Yet another four, perhaps! He waved the waitress over and when she nervously hauled herself to the table she was told: ‘Never again you do that. If you encouraged such free feeding, that would imply Customer is Pauper, no?’ He took the last bite off the pie.

Boy One, sat on a sandy floor, devoured the match ball by ball like it was a feast itself. Just days ago he found the TV set lying perched on a heap of garbage. It was worn out but in one piece and seemed to him as though it waited there just for him. Boy Two, his older brother, took care of the rest.

One conversion wire for electricity, another for the cable, then it was all colors and festivity. ‘Just for this one special day and then only whenever there’s a finals of sorts, that’s all’ he told his prepubescent brother. ‘We don’t want to get caught now, do we?’ He agreed to his brother like he always did. ‘Deal then it is.’

Boy Two got home and served the leftovers. Sat beside, you can tell the younger brother’s cheeks were chubbier than the older brother’s and the latter looked starved, emaciated when the former not so much. ‘I had some already, so you can have most of it.’ They took bites, then clapped and whistled, having the time of their lives, knowing somehow this game will end on a good note. A neighbor pitched the ball and our man confidently struck it long on with his bat.

For being born into this world, and into this country for no fault of theirs, with us, wherever we were, they were amusing themselves to dearth. The phenomenon in question not only was witnessed and ignored by those in the known, it was outright denied. Hence, the slogan Customer is Pauper never was uttered. The two boys sprang to their feet with shine in their faces and in accord jubilantly cried: ‘Are we or we are the champions of the world!’

Ahimaaz Rajesh

Author is an aspiring writer who blogs at Vignettes.