Posted by: Abe's Blog | November 9, 2010

Doing My Part to Help the Little People

This morning I powered up my laptop and brought up the internet. My default home page, MSN.com, came up and I glanced at it while waiting for my email page to load. As usual, the flashing teaser headlines blinked on my screen. One of these caught my eye, “Billionaires Give Tips on Saving Money”. Odd, I thought, as my email page came up.

 Jenkins stuck his head into my den, “Sir? Would you care for your coffee now, sir?” I waved him in and he placed my pewter coffee set in front of me, stirred in the cream (chilled to 34 1/2 degrees Farenheit) and tucked a silk napkin into my cravat. I ignored him and he backed away, exiting the room with a constant bow.

I thought about the headline. Billionaires giving advice? How droll, I told myself. But then, my mind being in constant conversation with itself, I debated internally. Billionaires have much to offer the Little People.  For one thing, we are billionaires. We are smarter than Millionaires, and infinitely smarter than Thousandaires. Hundredaires are not even in our realm of existence.

Spencer knocked twice on my door and entered, carrying a shining pair of ostrich boots. “Sir?” He said, “I’ve shined your boots. Would you like me to put them on you?” I stuck my feet in his direction and continued to think, staring out of my window at the manicured grounds of my estate. Spencer struggled to put my boots on, but I ignored him, thinking hard.

Being smarter than the average person, I knew that giving “advice” was next-to worthless. Anyone can give advice. The key to imparting true wisdom is to live in example. If these so-called billionaires could give advice to the Little People, then surely I, Sedgewick Von Abe Von Schnitzerwagen IV could do even better than that by demonstrating how one lived more efficiently. I swung my ostrich booted feet to the floor and lifted a silver handbell, swinging it gently so that the melodious ring filled the room. The door opened and Spencer came in with a “Sir? How may I be of…”

“You’re fired,” I interrupted him, “Pack your things and get out.”
“But sir?” He said, a look of shock in his eye.
“I’m downsizing, Spencer. I can put my own boots on, thank you.”

Spencer looked at me, glanced at the fireplace, his eyes lingering on the metal poker, then looked back at me. “As you wish, sir,” he said, through grated teeth. Then he turned and walked away, his shoes tapping on the marble in quick cadence.

That felt good, I thought. I don’t really need a man to put my boots on. I can do that myself. I thought about the other servants, busy with their chores. “Jenkins!” I shouted, “Come in here please.” After a few seconds, Jenkins poked his head in the door. “Jenkins, I have an important announcement to make. Please call the staff together in the library.” He raised an eyebrow, then turned to do his beckoning.

As I walked down the spiral staircase, I considered how I would look as a news flash across  MSN.com. I would wear my black llama fur turtle-neck and my “aggresive” wig. I thought that my lavender-shaded glasses would look the best and would accentuate my cheekbones.

I walked into the library and surveyed my staff. They looked at me, grim-faced. “People,” I said, drawing my chest up and out in the classic power-posture, “People, as you may not know, the country is locked in an economic crisis,” their eyes watched me, intent and learning. “Across this great nation, there are those who are struggling to make ends meet,” I sounded like a President. I knew I was getting through. “I have decided that it is time for me to do my part. I have chosen to be an example to the country and to live by demonstration,” I saw confusion in some faces, but I kept going, raising my voice an octave to add to the suspense, “As an example of the sacrifices we citizens must make,” my voice was nearly falsetto now, “I have decided to let all of you go.” I stopped speaking and bowed my head in humility.

The staff stared at me with open mouths. I knew that while they may have felt some frustration at losing their jobs, they were fighting down the feelings of pride that come from being part of a bigger moment. Tears glistened on some faces. Others turned red as if their pride would burst from them like volcanic lava. Hernando stepped forward. “Caballos culo,” he said, and spit on my ostrich boots. Then he turned and walked away and the others followed.

I knew that Hernando was from another country. I knew that other countries have strange customs. Still, I thought it a strange custom to spit on another’s shoes as a sign of honor. This was something to remember the next time I attended a black-tie event. My “compadries” would be impressed, I thought. I walked into the great kitchen.

It felt good to do something for my nation. I dug through the cupboards until I found the coffee. Too many of us in the wealthy class have become separated from the rest. I poured the grounds into a cup, filled it with water and set it on the counter. We become dependent on those around us and others think we can do nothing for ourselves. But we most certainly can. I poured the cream into my coffee cup, took a sip, then spit the grounds across the kitchen.

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Responses

  1. You humble even me with your brilliance….hundredaires……lol

    • Humility is underrated. Spend your hundreds like there is no tomorrow! (Because there might not be.) Or send them to me and I will invest them wisely 🙂

  2. Sedgewick Von Abe Von Schnitzerwagen IV. TWO Vons? Wow, you billionaires. Such extravagance. Why do sad things always happen in the library?

    • Libraries hold many memories for me–all of them good. But I’ve never spent time in a private library. I imagine it as a sinister place.
      The double-Vons help add credence to the fanciness of myself. I added them both for that reason.

      • I blame Clue. That game gave private libraries a bad rap. Nobody knows that more than Colonel Mustard.


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