The Land Of Pounds
Whenever the children get their pocket money, they head straight to The Land Of Pounds, where everything for sale costs exactly a pound. It is the most beautiful shop in the world.
[Legal Notice: The Land Of Pounds would like to make it clear to all readers, shoppers, entrants, voyeurs, and participants that it is unaffiliated with any and all other single currency unit based shopping emporiums, including but not limited to Poundland, Poundworld, World Of Pounds. World Land, Pound Island, or any other combination of words, symbols and expressions that may constitute a hitherto unknown but organically arising shop name either now, in the past, or the future, whichever future it is we finally happen to inhabit. Any coincident of naming is purely natural and within legal parameters concerning such aspects of law as trademark, copyright, emblemanisation, or hallmarking, where applicable. All legal avenues of complaint have been exhausted, and shall prove fruitless if attempted. Any broaching of this subject by customers will be met with complete and total humourlessness until the topic is dropped as awkwardly as possible and the purchasing of items can continue.]
The children know nothing of this, of course. They don’t even know Poundland exists. Even if they did it would not matter. For them The Land Of Pounds is all that there is. All that there ever needs to be.
Tina plans her purchases very carefully in advance. She wants nothing left to chance, and dares not let herself be placed at the mercy of impulse and desire. Who knows where such things could lead…
Today she goes straight to the bouncy ball aisle, and buys four identical bouncy balls (in a single pack), so that once they get home the four of them can race them down the slide together, without any arguments or complaints about who had the best ball, because all the balls will be identical now.
She’s been planning this for weeks, never mentioning the idea before now so that nothing could spoil it. She can’t wait to get home. She’s so excited. By her calculations, if they’re quick enough they’ll be able to sprint up the stairs to the loft quicker than the balls could slide down there themselves. Two races for the price of one!
In her mind everything goes perfectly. There are no arguments at all.
“I’m going to buy a sword,” Daniel told Ethel.
“You’ve already got a sword,” Ethel said.
“I’ve already got eleven swords,” Daniel said, as he held his newest one aloft to marvel at its magnificence. “And now I will have twelve.”
Ethel could not argue with such irrefutable logic.
Ethel bought herself a tiara because she knew Claire really hated princesses.
“What’s this?” Claire asked the man behind the counter, as she held up a plastic egg.
“It’s a plastic egg,” said Simon.
“Yeah, but what does it do?” Claire enquired. “What’s it for?”
“It’s a plastic egg,” said Simon.
“But why? Why? What’s the point? I don’t understand! I just want to know what it’s for!” Claire beseechingly implored.
“It’s a plastic egg,” Simon said.
Claire began to scream. “I don’t like it at all!” Claire told him. “I hate it!”
“You don’t have to buy a plastic egg if you don’t want a plastic egg,” Simon said.
“I do! I have to buy something!” Claire wailed.
“You could buy something else,” Simon said.
“Everything else is even worse!”
Claire slammed her pound down on the counter as furiously as she could, and then ran outside to show the others exactly what she’d got.
1. Written between May 21st and May 25th, 2021
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