There was this girl in college with me; lets call her Cashmira, Cashmira used to stay very close to a friend’s (S) house in a fairly posh locality in Mumbai. They often ended up commuting together to/fro from college in the BEST bus.
S noticed a very curious malady which Cashmira seemed to suffer from, every time the Bus conductor came within a radius of two-feet. Cashmira would open her bag, put her hand it to withdraw her wallet after which, the hand would have some sort of paralysis and either a) not find the wallet or b) not open the clasp of the wallet or rarely when she did manage a AND b, then c) not find any note under the denomination of Rs. 500.
She would then shrug her shoulders hopelessly (quite in the manner of what-does-one-do /Murphy’s-law-never-find-things-when-one-needs-it) while the irate conductor stood waiting, and ask S whether she could pay ‘just this once.’
S paid ‘just this once’ a 167 times or so.
There was another lady I knew, Moneyben Aunty. Moneyben Aunty lived in a very upscale neighbourhood in Mumbai. She loved having guests (especially those who were high up on the social scale) over, and showing off her Phoren Dining sets and photographs of her Phoren settled kids.
However, when it came to opening her handbag to spring for detergent soaps and the likes, her unfortunate hands suffered from some inexplicable malaise - they had spasms and froze. So she, poor soul, had to revert to putting slivers of used bath soaps (too small to be of any use for bathing) and into a receptacle, add some water, and leave them to pickle – and viola, in that holder was born a unique detergent soap!
Another interesting lady was Karan C’s wife – Mrs Karan C. She was also exceedingly fond of company – she would happily go out to meet all her friends in whichever every part of town. Occasionally, she also had to invite them over to her house to return the hospitality. On these days, although she was thrilled about the party, her hands also seemed to strangely convulse (with some inner nervous tension), right in the vicinity of the handbag when she was shopping for the treats and eats.
So, thus, had to devised a very unique menu for the guests –she even went to great lengths to make her own special sherbet (Pepsi/Thums Up/Fanta/Coke, and cunningly diluted with copious quantities of water for a thoroughly unique taste).
Now what is this affliction that affects all these good ladies just within a few inches of their wallets? Cashmira, Mrs Moneyben and Mrs KaranC, alas, suffer from the dreaded Lockfist disease.
Understanding the Lockfist disease
Lockfist also referred to as Scroogeitis is the inability to normally open the fist to disburse money
Scroogeitis can be classified as either primary or secondary. Primary Scroogeitis indicates that no specific medical cause can be found to explain a patient's condition. Secondary Scroogeitis is acquired after marriage to a primary Scroogeitis sufferer. Persistent Lockfist is one of the risk factors for unpopularity and may often result in exclusion from other peoples homes.
Etiology of Lockfist
Only in a small minority of patients (5%) with congenital or childhood financial pressure, can a specific cause be identified. In 90 percent to 95 percent the cases, the Indian Scroogeitis Association 2008 says there's no identifiable cause.
It is hypothesized that individuals might have a hyper-active enzyme which produces an acute olfactory sensitivity for money. Some sufferers have also known to exhibit an obsessive hoarding symptomlogy (also sometimes observed in squirrels).
Most of the secondary mechanisms associated with Lockfist are not very clearly understood. What is known is that the cardiac output reading is raised early in the disease in the event/eventuality of money disbursement. Immediate relief can be provided if they manage to convince someone else to spend the money, then the cardiac output readings drops to normal level.
It is also known that Lockfist is heritable and often polygenic (caused by more than one gene).
Signs and symptoms
Lockfist is usually found incidentally - "case finding" - by inadvertent companions during a routine associations. Lockfist in isolation produces no symptoms, although when accompanied by another person, can often demonstrate certain symptoms in the companion.
Malignant Scroogeitis is a late phase in the condition, where the sufferer will often not step out from the home for fear of being asked to spend money.
No fixed treatment protocol has been designed for the Lockfist disease yet.
For additional information
Contact: Cynic in Wonderland