Being a software engineer is sometimes not as cozy as it seems to others, especially when I am considered being a fathead with fat amount of money in the Wallet. I may be praised by my clients as “What a brilliant worker you are “. My manager might have admired me as “we need more wonderful resource like you “.But the auto driver at my office auto stand or waiter at my office pantry or our cab driver doesn’t think so. What they think about me or about any software engineer is – “Ah, Here is the intellectual moron, let’s bamboozle”.
That day I had to attend my friend’s reception at evening. I, accompanied with my other friend went to the nearby auto stand obviously to catch an auto. The auto driver was a well-built man, who reminded me of popular Tamil heroes who played driver role in their film with yellow scarf around their neck, dancing in front of auto stand while signing the high moral principles of auto-driver.
He asked us where we want to go. We told him the place for which he brusquely replied 100Rs. If he cared to saw our face at that moment, he would have glimpsed the high voltage shock that registered on our face. We said it is too high and asked him politely to reduce the price. His face staged many expressions like a bubbly cinema heroine except that his expressions are not bubbly but ghastly. Those were the expressions of a dog waiting to grab a hefty bone, but only to find a plate with a single banana skin. We said we can pay 70 Rs and not more, for which that guy simply started at us and returned to his seat. Yes sometimes to humiliate, one doesn’t have to speak. A simple stare would do the purpose. His stare told us – You are not fit to work on that company if you can’t afford 100 Rs.
We asked other auto drivers in the stand if any one else willing to take us for 70Rs. Being specimens of friendship, the other auto drivers didn’t want to disappoint their friend- the one who humiliated us. Hence they said – “The rate is fixed”. But no one knows who fixed the rate! After walking half a kilometer, at last we caught an auto, who halfheartedly agreed to take us for 80Rs. By that time we were already late for the function. When we got down from the auto, the driver told us that we have cheated him as if he is an innocent IT company employee and we are reckless bosses who sacked him. I started to shout. My friend reminded me that we were standing in a name unknown place and it is better to keep our heroineism down if we wanted to reach our home safetly. So we shouted feebly and left the place almost frustrated.
Dear Auto drivers at my office auto stand and other auto drivers all over the city,
Please be advised that we don’t have special privilege to any money lending tree in our office. We too do work to earn our bread.