"Thank you. God bless you. And God bless the United States of America," he said on the T.V.
"Change is here!" cried my sister in the background.
"Where change?" I asked.
This was how things were on January 20th this year, when I had slightly less than little clue of who Obama was. As is typical of us management consultants, I found out more about him only after the big thing happened - his inauguration, that too thanks to Google (again something characteristic of our kind). Reading about his life, both on the internet, and in the countless number of books that came up on the market as soon as he made President, I found enlightenment and decided I had to do something for him, as a mark of respect for his teachings.
So this is what I did.
Again in keeping with management consulting tradition, I needed a model to go alongwith my task. So I bought a 3 ft high statue of superman, painted it black and installed it near the main entrance to my apartment. I named it 'Our Oba-man of Hope' (to give it that saintly touch). I spread the word that this idol brings hope to
the hopeless those who seek hope and shows one the path towards change. This idol went on to become a hit with the hopeless... many, but there were some who asked me the story behind it. Since I didn't have a story and needed one soon, I did what people in my profession do all the time. I made up one.
I told all visitors that our Oba-man is a shrine, who takes away our bad loans, creates more jobs, and puts in more money to save an economy that doesn't understand how to handle money. I told people to come to the shrine penniless and pray to the man for succour. And as happens with most made-up stories, mine went on to become a big hit! (ref. Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, the Bible etc.) People believed in the story and brought flowers for the statue and decorated it with pictures of The Man, as they now lovingly referred to 'Their Oba-man of Hope'. To add to the effect, I told people that the man always resided inside the statue in spirit, and can see within you to see if you really seek hope and change. That way I managed to fend off allegations against the credibility of my claims.
My effort finally discovered recognition through the sole medium that supports such
useless noble causes - The Mumbai Mirror. Some good-for-nothing writer wrote a piece on Our Oba-man that was read by thousands of bored got-nothing-better-to-read/do readers and my mailbox was flooded with hundreds and thousands of requests from all over Mumbai asking where the shrine at is and how should one get there.
To make my endeavour seem more mysterious, I used to light lamps around the statue at night and hired some dancers to fake possession and dance around, especially on days when we had a good crowd. I even put up a donation box near the statue, inscribed with the message 'All proceeds go to the O.B.A.M - A.I.M foundation, which strives towards achieving Oba-man's main aim' (Though I never told anyone that it actually stands for 'Oh Boy! All this Money! And It's Mine!')
I finally wrote to Obama about this story one day, and asked him to come bless the statue, which would have brought in even more devotees (I even offered him a part of the O.B.A.M - A.I.M proceeds). But he said he was too busy pushing deals for putting even more money in the hands of incapable persons, and could not find the time to do so. The Mumbai Mirror writer referred to earlier got a wind of this and wrote another feature enlightening his readers with the fact that the Oba-man statue is unauthorised and that it doesn't have the blessings of The Man. This led to the dwindling of crowds first, and my alternate source of revenue thereafter.
Although the Oba-man idea may have failed, the black superman statue still stands tall near our apartment entrance, attesting the belief that we management consultants share - "I can always sell my idea. I only need a few fools to buy it."