the saleswoman who sold me ‘guilt’


It was yet another day, I was at home, watching the news when the door bell rang. I went over and opened the door. In front of me stood a 40-something woman, dressed in a salwar kameez and panting uncontrollably. Alternating words and her breathe, she asked me if there was a lady at home to which I replied in the negative. This seemingly innocent admission of the fact, as it stood then, apparently hurt her.

The panting changed into an expression of pain as she shot her next question at me, “Is anyone at your home unwell or something?” Again, my answer was in the negative. Two negatives anyway didn’t make a positive so I was pretty much expecting further dismay and she delivered.  “Nobody at your place is ill or has a problem from the health point of view,” she lamented, as if it was the most unbelievable thing to be told. By now, my heart had melted. I felt bad for the woman who was trying so hard so sell her stuff but I could do nothing about it. With a grim cum guilt laden face, I replied, “No, sadly there is no one like that at my place.”

She withdrew. Lost, defeated and with a deep sense of failure, she retreated. But what was wrong with me? Why did I feel ‘guilty’ that ‘there was no one unwell at my place’? Thats when i realised that the saleswoman did sell me something – defective guilt! 🙂

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