The Barometer needed a cab to get from the hotel to the airport. There were no cabs in sight but there was a long line of guests waiting. The desk valet said, “I can get you a cab.” He made a call and three minutes later a cab arrived. The Barometer gave the desk valet a tip as he loaded her suitcase into the cabin.
Once in the cab, the driver told the Barometer, “There was no need to tip him. I take care of him.” The Barometer was confused and said so. The cabbie said, “I pay him for getting me customers.” The industrious, albeit graftifying cabbie, explained that he paid the desk valets at all of the hotels in that area because then he did not have to go to the airport and sit in the queue. He added, “I pay him. He gets me customers. You pay me and tip me. God sees this and I get more desk valets and more customers. God helps us when we work hard.”
The Barometer too is convinced that God helps us when he work hard, but is not sure about the graft thing. In fact, I should have had the cabbie take a look at Exodus 23: 8: “And thou shalt take no: for the gift blindeth the wise, and perverteth the words of the righteous.” Or Deuteronomy 16:19″ Thou shalt not ; thou shalt not respect persons, neither take a : for a gift doth the eyes of the wise, and pervert the words of the righteous.”
During the 30-minute drive to the airport, the Barometer listened to the cabbie’s reasoning as to why God loves a bribe. The Barometer witnessed an impenetrable monologue. No one could break through such a barrier of words and rationalizations on how blessed we are in a world of bribes.
AS we drove by the cab queue at the airport, with hundreds of cabbies waiting their turn for the next passenger, he pointed and said, “Fools! I’ll have three fares by the time they get one.”
At the end of the lecture/ride, the Barometer asked the cabbie for a receipt, and he said, “I’ll give you two receipts. One is for this ride. The other is blank for you to submit as an extra expense to your employer for, just make something up — like a cab ride to dinner.”
The Barometer stood and watched in wonder as the cabbie drove away — back to his circle of hotels and his agents who work their front doors for him. The Barometer never got the chance to ask the cabbie, “Do you have any idea what I do for a living?”
The Barometer has the blank cab receipt — it is now immortalized.