I can’t afford it!
By-Md. Shahrear Talukder
A miser gave his blood to an Arab Sheikh and saved his life.
The Sheikh gifted him a Mercedes car.
The sheikh had need for blood a second time..
The miser willingly donated his blood again.
The sheikh gifted him a big packet of sweets.
The miser angrily asked why he was not given a Mercedes this time.
The sheikh smiled and replied that now he too had a miser’s blood in him.
In blood generally we have WBCs, also known as leukocytes, platelets, and RBCs, also known as erythrocytes, plasma and fat globules. But how this ‘miserliness’ can be embedded there in the blood? We have instinct of hunger, anger, love, hate, telling lies, carnal desire and so on. Practically miserliness in blood is a figurative expression. It means an instinct of not spending money, even when it’s necessary. According to Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (8th edition) instinct is “a natural tendency for people and animals to behave in a particular way using the knowledge and abilities that they were born with rather than thought or training.” So it’s an inherent inclination of a living organism toward a particular behavior.
Instinctive miserliness affects the taste of close-fisted ones hugely. It substantially affects their eating and buying habits, clothing, fashion sense, and public dealings. How? Let me give you an example. Days back I was walking with Mr. Habib. We went to a mobile shop to buy some mobile accessories. There I saw a very cheap mobile with cheap quality. I asked Mr. Habib whether he would like buy such a cheap mobile.
He answered, “I can’t afford it.”
I was surprised. By the way, regarding this matter I must mention Mr. Habib uses an I-Phone, a very expensive one. I won’t say he is rich in wealth but he is certainly rich in desires. He bought it at the very first year of his job in King Khalid University in KSA.
Seeing me a bit confused Mr. Habib took pity on me in explaining this ironical remark.
He started, “If it is to be considered financially, I can afford it. But if my sense of decent taste is to be questioned, I can’t afford it.”
I was very amused by his tart remark.
Next he went for another saying.
“Sometimes I want to buy something that appeals to my taste. My sense of decent taste can afford it. But financially speaking I can’t afford it.”
Should we call this an irony of fate? It’s intriguing. I myself face this insuperable situation almost everyday.
I am not sure whether our miserly brotherhood will understand this “insuperable situation”. Though they are in the capacity of understanding this, they will resist themselves from understanding out of sheer miserliness. Hail the misers!
I am not suggesting “Eat, drink, be merry” philosophy of life. Life can not be completely hedonistic. Neither we should be completely wasteful nor excessively parsimonious. In both ways we blot the purity of our soul.
Miserliness is a clear symptom of emptiness. Being miserly we cheat our short-lived life. Commoners consider us as the disgrace to the humanity. We should not invest all our time and energy for the sake of money. Many people use up their whole life in search of money, but by the time they find it, they need another life to use it, to spend it. These much craved life will never come. Therefore, we must readjust our miserliness with our transitory life and thus with our desires. So if you can afford a quality product of your desire without upsetting the harmony of the cosmos, buy it now. Don’t think or plan that much.
One can plan for a sweet family life, one kid or no kid, a job or a business, one house, two houses, many houses, one car, two cars, and many cars. But can one plan for a well-timed death? I guess no. Then what’s the use of spending the whole life amassing a huge wealth more than one needs to lead a decent life?
Miser of the misers deprives himself, deprives his family and friends. A miser dies a death unsung. Let me finish with another joke.
A miser was on his deathbed.
Miser: My wife, where are you?
Wife: Yes, I am here.
Miser: My sons and daughters, are you all here?
Sons and daughters: Yes Papa.
Miser: Then why is the fan still running in the other room?