The shirt had been marked down,

so I had to go and buy it;

The tie was on clearance,

so I had to run and tie it;

The suit was on promotion,

so I could not defy it;

But all three were ghastly —

I couldn’t honestly deny it.

I got a juicer coupon,

so I had to go and use it;

It expired in a week,

and I didn’t want to lose it;

I didn’t need a juicer,

but I had to quickly choose it;

I hate every vegetable,

but now I’d have to juice it.

“Companion flies free” was the offer,

so I simply had to take it;

I had no money to pay,

so I’d have to work and make it;

I had no thirst for travel,

but now I’d have to slake it;

My companion I despise,

but now I’d have to fake it.

The gasoline was cheaper there,

so I had to drive and get it;

The store was miles and miles away,

but I could not forget it;

When at last I came back home,

I soon began to regret it;

All the fuel left in the tank

was barely enough to wet it.

The knife was shown on TV,

so I couldn’t have missed it;

It would never lose its edge,

so how could I resist it?

It worked as they promised,

the first time that I used it;

Then it got so dull and blunt,

you could’ve safely kissed it.

The camera was reduced,

so I went ahead and bought it;

The temptation was strong,

and I could not have fought it;

The gadget would be fun,

or so I had thought it;

But it’s lying in my attic,

untouched since I got it;

The ab machine was small enough,

to fit neatly in my pocket;

Soon my belly would flatten,

and no one would ever mock it!

But when the thing failed to work,

I stomped on it and broke it;

And as for my “six pack”—

still in my fridge I stock it.

If I miss an offer,

I know I’ll always rue it;

If ever I missed one,

It’s because they withdrew it;

When I can do a deal,

I invariably do it;

Though after every deal,

I always feel I blew it.

If I see a coupon,

I will at once clip it;

I’ll buy extra items,

so they’ll freely ship it;

If it’s totally useless,

I’ll pretend I’m going to flip it;

But try to toss it out,

and possessively I’ll grip it.

So anything that’s on sale,

eagerly I select it;

Though it may be junk,

and though I’ve never liked it;

As the years go by,

the more I go and collect it;

And though it almost chokes me,

Never can I evict it.

Chandra Shekhar began his career as a researcher in computer vision before transitioning to journalism. His first novel, “Sunless,” is a science fiction thriller. He divides his time between Princeton and Coimbatore, India.

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