Daily Fiction 12: The Rich Fellow

Daily Fiction 12:

There was a rich fellow. He’s the one we care about.

He lived in a big metropolis sprawling with people. He was a generous and thoughtful soul, so he was always grateful that the people went about so much activity, for so long, just to create the world he walked around in. The world was good. It was good at doing what it was supposed to, which was to give the rich fellow an interesting life.

There were street vendors, chess players, men standing outside beckoning people in to comedy shows, women preaching the word of Jesus, police officers riding horses, families having dinner outside in the summer night outside the streetlight. The rich fellow took some joy in all of them.

The fish market was one of his favorites. They had hundreds of varieties of animals, all pulled up from the sea, many copies of each one, but with slight variations between the specimen. No two were exactly alike, but all of one kind were alike enough to have a standard price, to give the customer an expectation of quality.

He was amazed at how much work they put into the fish market. The stalls were made of old wood, painted yellow, and it was chipped just enough so that he would know it was old, but not enough to dampen the yellow or his mood. The vendors, and even some of the customers, had funny customs, special ways of using words, idiosyncracies in how they exchanged money and parcelled their product, that provided him mild fascination but never fully confounded him.

And this for a place he only went to three or four times a year! They kept it running all the other days, just in case he would show up. They kept it running even if he’d already come and left for the day and there was no hope of return.

He knew it went beyond the fish market. The fish market was just an example. That was another use of it, besides the amusement, the fascination, and the occasional seafood, (though he only bought seafood every third visit or so, barely once a year—all those multifarious species being pulled out of the ocean just to afford him the occasional dozen oysters or fresh salmon).  It was an example of how much work everybody was putting into the rich man’s rich life, even without knowing if he was ever going to make us of it. Every day they would deal in fish, staying in the fish world, just practicing for his arrival, as he crossed through the planes of existence with ease.

He was grateful with all his rich soul.

They also were doing an incredible amount of work to make him stay rich. He talked about money to people, and he got money for it. It was a good deal, but luckily some idiots were taking lesser deals. The ones he saw most immediately were the ones who moved the money around while he talked about it. They didn’t get as much money as he did, because they worked under him. And yet they worked harder. They were working hard rather than working smart. At least they were working. But they hadn’t done enough work, because they still weren’t having his job, much less doing it, which was kind of an afterthought to the having the job.

He had friends who would muck around with certain other work. One of them was talking about a system he had created to make it easier for people to buy bread directly from bakers. You could use the system on your telephone, which was the iPhone 6s, (although the rich fellow could still remember a time when your telephone was the iPhone 6, because the iPhone 6s had not been made yet.)

The rich fellow considered it crude and a little alarming that his friend had been able to become rich doing something that wasn’t moving around money. It seemed to him that money should go to the money-makers, not to people with idiosyncratic other pursuits. He wished that everyone at the world worked for his bank, so then everyone would be on the same system and there would be no chaos and everyone would understand more clearly that he was above them because it would be right there on the org chart. People usually got the message without it, but he figured there was no reason to be taking the chance.

Anyway, his friend, not a professional money-maker, had managed to make money just by building a system that went on telephones and computers, and dealt with baking. The rich fellow wasn’t sure what to do about it.

But in the middle of their conversation, the rich fellow’s friend mentioned something peculiar: that the bakers baked bread in order to try to make their own money.

This seemed very stupid to the rich man. Why would anybody bake bread? There was clearly no money in it. You were grubbing around in flour and water. There was no way to change that quickly enough into money to justify not going into money-talking instead. And yet people did that! It seemed to him that they had pursued a life of extreme poverty, and deserved anything that happened to them on account of their irresponsible decisions. But because it was hard to get that point through, he thought it would be good to use incentives—which he dealt with a lot at the bank—to punish people who didn’t make responsible decisiions like going into the field of money-moving.

At a party, he professed his love for all the actors who shaped out his world, and his contempty for all the failed businesspeople who were content with their insane plan that they could get money by moving things directly.

He called himself a social liberal and a fiscal conservative

[end to be completed later or never)

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