Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Cents of a Calvin

Ancient Chinese anthologies frequently tell the terribly cliched tale of the destitute but desperately filial orphan who finds himself having to sell off all his threadbare material goods - and finally bartering himself into slavery - just to pay off his recently deceased father's extortionate burial expenses. With each variation of the oft-repeated tale like many a repeated rumour, it tends to get a bit more outlandish - though none to compare with my particularly licentious thoughts of authoritarian masters and submissive slaves.

Did I mention whips?

But I digress.

Though it certainly exists in certain marginalized pockets of society, it's hard to imagine in these days of bourgeouis capitalism someone driven to such straitened circumstances as indentured servitude. Though I am sure there are more than a few who have had to resort to nefarious means of recovering their wealth, I doubt many would even think of offering themselves up for slavery to recoup their losses. Then yesterday I came to realize that not all old folk tales are plain hearsay and some are actually based on real life. Since everyone likes a little allegory every once in a while, come sit ye down and let me tell you a story.

Salt
Take these with a pinch of salt and call me in the morning!

Once upon a time ( well, actually just yesterday morning ), a sweet charming fella somewhere abouts in the verdant gardens of Cheras found himself profoundly stricken by a mysterious malady. Rising up from his slumber with bones aching and seemingly aged with disease, he dug around in his belongings in search of coin but found his pockets utterly to let. Not only was our hero desperately mired in debt, he found himself without a single cent to call his own, hardly enough to even purchase the services of a travelling medical practitioner.

Without giving up hope, the poor man bravely made his way to the doors of several respected financial institutions in search of a credit loan ( though hopefully no clandestine visits to the ubiquitous limb-hacking ah beng loan sharks ) but summarily found himself being turned away due to equally mysterious circumstances. The Mystery of the Disappearing Credit anyone? No one could tell what exactly had gone wrong but I believe an inexplicable glitch in the computer system could have been the culprit ( but this is a pseudo-medieval folk tale after all! ).

Desolation and despair shook his very soul but he wasn't one to give up all hope. So instead of seeking help from his equally beleaguered friends ( or rather than accept charity ), our depressed discomfited hero resolutely sought refuge several miles away - farther than the crow flies, I'm sure - in a suburban strip mall as he busked to earn dollars and cents to pay his medical bills. Possibly strumming Nobody's Child as sympathetic passersby in the mall tossed spare change into his precious money hat.

Fortunately there was just enough made from his earnings to supply him with enough herbs and medicines ( from a medical charlatan no doubt ) to last a week. All's unwell that ends well.

And I hear tell his partner's a physician. Sigh. What is the world coming to?

12 comments:

strapping.shane said...

Oh dear. Leave the poor man alone lar. =P

Sue said...

Unbelievable! Though, what could you offer but bed rest, aspirin and fluids?

JL said...

it's time for plan B

Selling T-Shirts :) Jom En. Calvin

alliterative.allvin said...

What a lively vocabulary you have!
Indentured servitude? Hmmm... Chaining Charming Calvin as Collateral? :) Poor boy!

(PS - I'm sure you meant to say 'sought refuge' and not 'seeked refuge')

Ban said...

What in the world?...

savante said...

Can't leave him alone, shane :P

True enough. But he's getting enough rest hopefully, sue.

Go tell him that then, jl.

Thanks, allvin. Rectified.

WHy, bunny?

Paul

alliterative.allvin said...

Did you like my alliterative attempt? :P

So what exactly did Charming Calvin do to supplement his income... did he really go busking in some suburban mall?

hrugaar said...

Um, I know you mentioned in a previous post that you were 'high maintenance' (I couldn't possibly comment la) and that your expensive tastes were taking their toll on his wallet. But if c.calvin is really having to go busking when he's sick, that's getting a bit beyond a joke mate.

Maybe it's not so much what the world is coming to, but what you're pushing him to. Think about it.

Sorry if I sound grumpy. I'm having a sense of humour failure today. :o\

Anonymous said...

OMG nipple piercing!!!!

Darn sexy!

xavier

nyonyapenang said...

the banks won't help.
the herbs can't help.
you'll have to help.

Mr.Brian/Mr.Fletcher said...

sometimes, a "healing" touch has just the right effect.

the ugly aristocrat said...

ooo tedah Calvin! get well soon yeah?!