Shaun, a redheaded boy whose face is dotted with hundreds of freckles, took position at the head of the table and rapped his fist, calling a meeting to order.
“I have an exciting idea to share today,” he said, clearing his throat. “Genie Bottles Inc. is the top selling company in our MicroSociety and now we want to go bigger!”
He gestured toward his friend Joshua, a dark haired 6th grader, “Joshua and I have been meeting with our facilitator. After some talking we’ve decided to try and apply for a patent.”
Upon hearing the word “patent,” the large group of kids at the table began to mumble and give hushed exclamations. “Joshua will explain a bit more about the plan.”
“A patent will let us sell our bottles in real stores for real money. It also makes sure that nobody can steal our idea. Mr. Ramsey agreed to help us with the patent, we just need to raise some money to purchase it.”
Shaun took over, “Now we just need a small amount of Micro bucks from everyone to pay for the patent. What do you guys think?”
A resounding “yes!” was exclaimed by the group of excited employees. Shaun bounded out the door and down the hall to tell Mr. Ramsey while everyone at the table began chattering loudly. “Patents, holy cooooow!” “We’re going to be rich!”
“Hey everyone,” the balding teacher proclaimed as he clasped his hands together, “I’m glad you’ve decided to apply for the patent! I’m going to work out the patent application with Shaun; we’ll see how things go. Does anyone have a store in mind for selling our bottles?”
Brandon shyly raised his hand and said, “How about Bloomingdale’s? My mom shops there for decorations sometimes.”
“Ah! Bloomingdale’s might be just the one! Shaun and I will need a few micros for-” but before Mr. Ramsey could finish speaking, the employees were already fishing Micro bucks out of their pockets and holding them up to the teacher.
“I see we’re all on board then!” he said with a smile. They collected a few dollars from each employee, reaching a grand total of 1,758 micros.
Mr. Ramsey and Shaun went off to the main office and checked about applying for a patent. The workers of Genie Bottles, Inc. waited, huddled around the meeting table in suspense, leaning towards each other predicting the outcome of their patent application. Eventually, Shaun and Mr. Ramsey returned, both with smiles on their faces.
“Alright everyone, we’ve made some phone calls, and we can definitely get a patent on the genie bottles! Now lets call Bloomingdale’s to make sure they’ll sell the product.”
The troupe of workers migrated to the main office and crowded around Shaun as he picked up the telephone to contact Bloomingdale’s marketing department.
“Uh h-hi. Our company wants to sell a product with your store.”
“And what is your company name?”
“Genie Bottles, Incorporated.”
“What sort of product are you looking to sell?”
“Our patented Genie Bottle Decorations- They’re beautiful chemically stained bottles.”
“I’m sorry, but I’m afraid we aren’t looking for any decorative products at the moment.”
“I’m afraid so. But thank you for contacting us. Have a nice day!” *Click*
The crowd remained hushed, no longer with anticipation, but with disappointment. Mr. Ramsey placed his hand on Shaun’s shoulder, “Don’t sweat it. You tried. We can call some other storefronts.”
“Yeah,” piped up a pigtailed 4th grader, “And at least we know we can get our idea patented!”
Their spirits began to rise a bit; soft, modest smiles again graced their lips.
“Even if we can’t sell the product in a real store, you’ve all accomplished a lot today. This is how real companies usually work, getting patents, contacting retailers; you should be proud,” Mr. Ramsey said.
“You’re right,” huffed Shaun, “thanks for the help Mr. Ramsey. I think Genie Bottles, Inc can consider one wish granted.”