Monday, September 28, 2020

Comrades, you are warned!Comrades, you are warned!

For a small country, this place is doing quite nicely. Some locals may well be surprised to learn that they live in a small country. In fact, that’s exactly what their country is. I suppose if you spent all your life in the village and then move to join your uncle in town you would think your country is big. No, it is not. There are bigger countries out there. They are so big they pass for continents. They also have scores of millions of people. We are talking about places with many time zones in one country. When you are sleeping in one part, chaps are drinking on the other side. I am sure if I were to tell childhood mates who did not stay long in school that there are such countries they would laugh in my face.

They would tell me the reason they ran away from school was because they knew all along that too much education drives people crazy. Anyway, like I say, we have done so well. In fact, for a small country, we have over achieved. I hold the view that a country’s achievements and failures must be commensurate to its size of population. For that same reason, I simply watch and note when a natural disaster hits the big countries and thousand upon thousands of souls perish. In a small country like ours, there will never be a single incident in which fifty people lose their lives. Never. Even when natural disasters strike, only a few casualties are reported.

In the big countries with huge populations, it is a different story. I count myself lucky I live in a small country. Chances of surviving natural disasters are very high. I guess it’s because there is enough space for everyone. That said, we have acquitted ourselves well when it comes to the ladies. I don’t know why but there is just something about our girls. They win everything. For a small country, I think our women win more than they should. At the rate they are going I won’t be surprised when organisers ban us from their competitions. Having winners from the same country is boring and results in other countries staying away. Perhaps we should tell our girls to take it easy and lose deliberately so that they don’t get banned. I mean just look at them. First it was Mpule. I used to see her pretty face in the papers. I must say she was a stunner. When she went for the Miss Universe pageant I never gave her a chance. There was no way she was going to win. I doubt if before her departure she had ever flown, let alone set foot outside the borders of her hot and dry motherland. But she won. It was a heady time. When she came back home I joined the throngs lining up the streets to salute her. On the radio everyone was trying to advise Mpule how to carry herself because she was the country’s ambassador.

Some of the female callers, in motherly tones told her not to be misled into posing naked in sex magazines. I couldn’t believe it. Who were they to tell her what to do with her body? Why do they think we buy those magazines? But I listened and kept by thoughts to myself. But even when I was cheering Mpule, there was a niggling question in my mind. After Mpule’s victory, we went through a dry spell. It was not really a dry spell. Small countries can only win so many contests.

Then came another shocker. Kaone had won some international competition. All of a sudden she was everywhere strutting her stuff on the catwalk as a glamour model. She graced the covers of glossy magazines. I think she took the advise of the radio station callers because, try as I could, I never found her in any of the nude magazines. But, again, looking at Kane, the question that had been troubling me when Mpule won, came back. After Mpule and Kaone every girl wanted to emulate them. Mothers did everything to produce the next international star from here. I felt sorry for the ugly girls. I am sure their mothers cursed their fathers for giving them such ugly daughters. When euphoria over Kaone subsided the country returned to looking for its next superstar.

At that point I told myself that was it. This small country had over achieved. Surely, it couldn’t win again. But the small country won again. This time it was Tebby. She won an endurance competition and went home with a cool one hundred thousand dollars; yep United States. Now that is serious money. The question that was on my mind when Mpule and Kaone won, returned with a vengeance. I couldn’t ignore it any longer. I wondered do these girls have boyfriends? They had all won competitions for grown up women. And, as far as I know, all grown up women are either married or have boyfriends.

Having told myself they had boyfriends, I wondered about the whereabouts of the chaps. I mean who wouldn’t wonder? I also asked myself how the boyfriends were feeling. To be honest I don’t think the boyfriends were happy. They probably pretended to be but deep in their hearts they were not. I don’t believe any boyfriend can be happy when their partner becomes an international superstar. Absolutely not. The reason is quite simple. The moment the girl wins the big boys go after her. Here I mean real big boys not some local chap driving the latest model from the dumpsite in Japan. And because the girls are international stars, we are talking about international big boys prowling around.

Truth be told, I don’t know if the three ladies I have mentioned are still with their original boyfriends before they won. But I doubt. Either the chaps ran way the day they heard on the radio or the girls realised they could not continue with the driver of the Japanese dump model. The point I want to make is that chaps should be careful and keep a close eye on their partners. To keep their girlfriends, they must not allow them to enter international competitions. The moment the girl wins means the end of daydreams about living happily ever after. The year has just begun. The local competitions will be coming up to find ladies to represent us in the various international competitions. I foresee tears and broken hearts. So, comrades don’t say I didn’t warn you!

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Sunday Standard September 27 – 3 October

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of September 27 - 3 October, 2020.