Eine kleine nock muckenstich

RANGE: It is the custom of wealthy celebrities, when they are accepting awards and tributes, to thank “all the Little People behind the scenes.” Behind the Little People, in turn, are Small Businessmen. The Little People work for them. These clever wee creatures can be found the world over: haggling over sickly sweet coffee in Middle Eastern cafes, bargaining between puffs of noxious herbs in Oriental bazaars, and, here in America, slamming their tiny fists upon the desks in small (naturally) claims court.
HABITS: These diminutive entrepreneurs have frequently been accused (by the small minded) of petty larceny. But while he does, occasionally, sell short, the Small Businessman is much too concerned with his stature in the business community to short change anyone! He often complains (and small wonder) that he is facing extinction as a result of encroachment upon his markets by Corporate Giants and the Tax Burden.
HISTORY: The American Small Businessman is probably a Red Inkling of (lowland) Scottish extraction, although he might also be descended from the French “petits bourgeois,” those wizards of “ledger de main.” In the Old Days, whenever a dragon’s lair was discovered, some warrior Elves would make so bold as to try to steal the dragon’s gold hoard. The Small Businessman used to set up a ticket booth at the mouth of the cave. In the sweatshops of Small Businessmen, the basic fabric of our economy was woven and our money laundered. Two examples of entrepreneurman-ship which they recently inspired are “Rural Cottage Industries,” a mammoth cartel producing prefab cottages, and “Mom and Pop Stores,” in which wealthy urban orphans can purchase a nice new set of parents.
SPOTTER’S TIPS: The Small Businessman is seldom far from a telephone. By means of this instrument, he makes small talk into the wee hours— and a nice little profit. Traces of his handiwork can often be detected in small print. He is known to be short on cash at tax time and a tiny bit slow paying bills. His skill at maintaining a low overhead dwarfs that of a large corporation. An unsung, heroic Small Businessman, standing up to Big Government and Big Labor, and other big guys from New Jersey to New York.

Location of Fair Folk: Private Collection (gift from Byron)


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