The Lord of the Files. #BarAThon 2017

He was nicknamed The Lord of the Files, that lazy, old Mishra. Right from the way he carried himself, to the way he functioned, or, er, malfunctioned, he had a royal way of doing it all. It’s a wonder how he survived all these years!

He would make a grand entry into the office at an hour that suited him.  Parking his rusty, old two-wheeler in the parking lot, he would lumber over towards the building that had been a witness to his 20 years of “service” as a clerk. No, there had been no promotion in all these years, because a promotion would need efforts and efficiency on his part and that was really not his style of working.

Then, in he would drag his bulky frame right up to his chair and dump his posterior in it as it creaked under his weight. Shouting off orders to Gopal, the peon, to switch on the fan overhead, fetch him a bottle of cold water and his first cup of tea and some biscuits was his pre-work ritual. Absentmindedly scratching his sweaty underarms, picking his nose, or cleaning his ears with the end of a pen’s refill, he would wait till Gopal had carried out every task to his satisfaction.

Guzzling down the chilled water, he would then ho-hum for another fifteen minutes and then get down to work. Work involved first eyeing the huge pile of files that lay on his messy table and yawn annoyingly, then picking up the first file,  he would give it a cursory glance and then dump it on the other side of the table. This would go on for half an hour before he would call for his second cup of tea. With biscuits, of course. This went on till lunch hour, after which lethargy would set in and Mishra would doze off at his table.

The files on his table would pile up everyday with dust settling on them as comfortably as Mishra had settled  in his sluggish ways. Gopal would often nudge Mishra to work on this or that file, or even move it over to the next table where it would get the attention it deserved and earn some brownie points for himself. For anyone who ever dared question/chastise Mishra for his laziness and his incompetency, there was hell to pay from the Lord of the Files, himself! For, no one but the Boss had any right to give him an earful, was what he would always proclaim.

And, that’s just what happened, one fine day. The Boss swapped his swivel chair with his lounge chair and  handed over the management of his office to his foreign-returned son.  In stormed Boss Junior heralding winds of change and the first change to take place was the dismissal of Mishra.

The number of sweets that were distributed that day, ah,  the office resembled a sweet shop!

How do I know about Mishra so well? I was the idiot who got him employed at our office, in the first place.


Today’s prompt at the BarAThon is Lord of the Files and the sin Sloth goes so perfectly with the prompt!

Today’s prompt brought to mind our lazy government officials whose only aim in life is to laze around in the office under the pretext of work. The files at many of the offices pile high on the tables of the clerks who would rather swap flies than work on the files. Things are definitely changing, but there are miles to go before the scene really undergoes a drastic change and the officials who are paid the kind of money they don’t deserve begin doing the kind of work that they should!

Published by shilpagupte

Do you know the secret to living a happy life? Eat. Pray. Love. Or, watch what you eat, wish well for all and fill your heart with love! That's precisely what I try to do through my blogs: 'Metanoia', the wellness blogazine, and 'Fictionista', my blog for fiction and non-fiction. Welcome to my virtual homes!

18 thoughts on “The Lord of the Files. #BarAThon 2017

  1. Haha! I loved this lighthearted piece told from the point of view of Mishra's work colleague. Wonderful, Shilpa. Loved the characterization of Mishra. Oh my, I've known some Mishras over the years. Such sloths who think the world owes them. Great work! You really made him come to life on the page! Or as much as a slovenly character like Mishra can come to life since he sounds so lazy! Hahah! Great writing, my Dear!


  2. You brought alive Mishraji with your words. The nose picking, the scratching of underarms..eww..but the picture couldn't be missed! Lovely job with the description and story. And, I liked the last bit about the colleague being the narrator.


  3. Ha ha ha!! this was a good fun read for its written in such a quirky way! I could imagine this “babu” by the excellent way you described him and both the prompts have been used so well in the post- Good creative writing!!!


  4. Heh heh.. I could see thus man – lumbering up to his table and drinking endless cups of tea. He wouldn't even switch on the fan himself… ha ha.. that was funny. And you got him in? Well written Shilpa.


  5. Haha ha! That was a fun read, Shilpa. Ah! I have met the likes of Mr Mishra over the years. It's truly challenging to get the work done from them. And your words brought those Mishras live in front of me. Well written and a wonderful take on the prompt, Shilpa!


  6. Well, well, aren’t you the little minx of storytelling? 😉 Mishra-jis of the world, beware! Shilpa is watching you. Some lovely characterisation there, Shilpa. A few things could be ironed out in expression. Will tell you about it over PM 🙂 But a very enjoyable read.

    Liked by 1 person

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