Wednesday, 22 February 2006

The Oil War

My brother is an addict. He contaminated me. I’ve gotten over it. Not he. His eyes are bloodshot. His fingers twitch all the time. He looks haggard. He’s lost and is still losing weight. Whenever ordered to eat something he says he’s not hungry. My sisters and I have made up our minds. We’re going to sue Nintendo.

Today, I feel sorry for our kids when I see them playing. I don’t even consider it playing. It’s a parody of playing. You don’t play by yourself with a machine. You don’t concentrate when you play. You just let yourself go and… play. Times have changed though. Poor today kids, we yesterday kids had all the fun.

I hated dolls. They bored me. I could not comprehend how anyone in her right senses would spend hours on a stupid doll “accessorizing” her. What a waste of time. Girls are such sissies. My best friends were all boys. We used to play bad guys and cops. No one ever wanted to be a bad guy. They died when shot. The cops resurrected. We all ended up being good cops who killed each other and resurrected.

It was fun but we got bored and started provoking each other in order to have a real fight. It sometimes ended with our mothers yelling at each other. The one whose nose got broken mother did most of the yelling. We hoped one day they’d quit yelling and have a real fight.

My best friends name was Ahmed. His parents were originally from Tchad but lived in Sudan. His father was a colleague of mine. University Professors. He didn’t know how to fight and always got beaten. That was bad, especially in school where it meant a forever loss of respect. We explained it all to him but he didn’t understand how important it was not to be the beaten guy. You had to win more often that lose a fight. You weren’t supposed to cry or go tell you parents who did it to you.

Not only was he a coward, he wasn’t a smart one at that. He provoked. Not the small kids he could handle. No. The big guys. One big guy in particular. Oumar was his name.

Oumar was one ad and nasty kid. He was older than us. I always wondered how old he was but never got to know. When Ahmed and I got admitted to school – on the same day – Oumar was three classes ahead. When we passed our Primary School Certificates Exams, Oumar was two classes behind us. We decided he was just a bad kid who enjoyed torturing other kids.

I still have no idea what went between the two of them. Ahmed and Oumar. During break time, Oumar came over and told Ahmed that he was going to show him good after school for what he did. I asked what the matter was and Oumar told me to mind my own business. I thought that wasn’t fair, I was just asking and he didn’t have to talk to me that way. Oumar said fine, he’ll show me too. Ahmed bared his teeth at Oumar. Oumar scowled and said rendez-vous after school. Only he was talking to Ahmed, he was talking to me. What to do, I had to be there otherwise my reputation was done.

After school, Ihad an errand to run for a friend of my mum. She gave me a 2.5 liters empty gallon I had to fill with peanut oil at the grocer’s. When I got back to school where we would be picked up to home – 7 kilometers far – my classmates and Oumar’s were holding siege. Some thought I’d run away. They cheered when I turned the corner.

Oumar and I took our positions. There’s sand all over the place.

Oumar: C’om, hit me… touch me…
I: No, you start….

(That’s the way our fights started, you had to touch your opponent for the fight to be declared open)

Slaaaaaap!

He slapped me. I almost fell. He snickered. It was no use trying to slap him back, he was so much taller than me. I hit him with the galloon. One of his classmates tried to grab it. I lashed at him. I guess I looked demented because he sure got scared.

Oumar slapped me some more. I dropped the gallon and tried to dodge. He started playing Jackie Chan and his classmates cheered him. Mine were looking worried. If I lost the fight, they’d take the shame too. Oumar was getting excited. I was starting to tire and he knew it. Soon I’d fall and he’d get over me, slap me some more and be declared winner. Then, Eureka!

His being tall was an advantage, I decided my being shorter should be too. His next Jackie Chan kick found me prepared. I grabbed his foot. He had nothing to hold on to. The sand was slippery. My classmates went crazy. I pulled and pulled him! He was yelling, I was laughing. I pulled and pulled and he fell. I kept on pulling. The stupid started playing mad and got sand all over his face blinding himself. I sat over him. Took my galloon and hit him on the face, the chest, whenever I could reach.

The classmates chanted my name. It was oh so great!

I won.

The next day Oumar brought his father to school to show him who’d done it to him. The Director came to fetch me feeling sorry for me because he knew Oumar was a no-good kid. When he saw me, his father’s jaw dropped. He looked at his son and the length and size of him and at tiny skinny me. He slapped his son for shaming him so and went home.

I wonder how they are doing.

Tags: :.: :.:

Wednesday, 15 February 2006

Mythomania

Pariah” is a very disturbing movie. Horrifyingly so. I have had the opportunity of watching it a while ago. You can’t enjoy a movie which you watch wishing you were somewhere else. I did thinking about Paolo Coelho’s “The Alchemist”. Nothing happens without a purpose. Everything has a meaning. Anything might be a sign. I learned something out of this movie.

When I was still in primary school, I read the story of a little boy who lied to his friends. He pretended he lived into a castle, which you got to by crossing a drawbridge. Impressed, the friends decided to come see for themselves. Of course, some of them doubted the veracity of what he said. The little liar now had a problem; his house was a simple little white painted house half an hour from school. After worrying himself sick, he told his mother about how he lied and that his friends were coming over and his reputation would be done at school. His mother thought over the matter then advised him to welcome the friends and then tell them that the house he’d described is the house of his dreams. The one he wished he lived into.

When I read the story, it worried me and fascinated me to know that even mothers lie. Today, I wonder what the little boy turned into. A compulsive liar?
Compulsive liars – I believe the proper term is Mythomaniac – are those who have the tendency to lie frequently for no apparent reason. The profound reasons are said to be, circumstantially, the need to enhance the self’s value, the fear to displease, to provoke an argument, the fear or hurting others…
To come back to the subject of “Pariah” gave me the ideal and the most accurate illustration of the “mythomania” issue.
Scene # 1
- You know my brother died of an overdose?
- You are so full of s**t!
- Its true!
…….
- It seems like your brother died of 50 different things!
- I had two brothers!
Scene # 2
- Oh my God! Look, a shark! My brother was eaten by a shark.
…..
- My only brother.
Scene # 3
- I gotta tell you am really sorry about Brian…. Niggards killed my brother too.


Poor Brother, rest in Peace.

Tuesday, 14 February 2006

Uniformed

The Sky is Blue, My Love is true, whom I love is you... Oops, that's a side effect of Valentine's Day. Wrong story but Happy Valentine's Day still to all of you people! May you life be full of love!

Leaves are green, the sky is blue, I am always black, you are sometimes red, green, yellow or rosy pink. Color matching is an obsession with me, you might not care what you wear as long as you're comfortable. We're beautiful, we're different.

As far as I can recall, I hated uniforms, school uniforms. I went to a primary school where we didn't have to wear them. Even if we had, we would have been about a 1/4 of the school population to be able to afford the uniforms. They were very poor the kids in my school. The boys came to school with a slate and chalk. No books, no copybooks. They came to school wearing their underwear only. I used to think it was funny then. I was a child, I was cruel.

Am getting out of subject here, lets get back to the uniforms. I hated wearing it to secondary school here in Mauritius. It was an ugly uniform at that! I think I unconsciously picked jobs where I didn't have to wear no uniform. It's so depressing to see people dressed alike. The sight greets me every morning, by the time the day is over I get used to it. The next day it depresses me even more that the day before. Uniforms everywhere. School uniforms, work uniforms.

The uniformed people even talk and act alike. They have the same attitudes, the same mannerisms. It's terrible! Some lucky employees are lucky; they get to personalize their uniforms. A brooch here, a scarf there. And the uniformed also huddle together in groups and whisper furiously to each other while darting suspicious looks around.



I understand uniforms in certain fields; medical, military, cuisine etc... I just don't see the point for, for example, school teachers to dress alike, which they're going to do soon in a school I know. I've been reading about the politics behind school uniforms, how's its been noted that it reduces violence. Am skeptic though.

Am starting to make peace with the uniforms since I observed this other phenomenon which has been prevailing for the last couple of years. I thought it was my eyes playing tricks on me or that I was just imagining it but no! I did see Ciara yesterday! No, wait a minute, I actually saw 2, no... 4 Ciaras yesterday! I guess Alicia Keys is out. Before her, it was Eve. A new video is released and all the girls turn into the singer. Dress like her, talk like her, chew the gum like her, walk like her... be her. It's terrible.

The boys are more faithful to their choices. They were and still are 50 Cent. They even talk with the mouth sideways. I think they have no idea the guy was shot into the region of the mouth which is why he talks the way he does. Oh my God, tell them not, who knows, they might try and get their cheeks shot too!

The Sunday before last, I went to Flic en Flac. My friend owns a three floor bungalow there. We went up on the terrace to breath in the fresh sea air and enjoy the view. As far as the eye could see from where I was sitting were bungalows, all with blue roofs. I was told they are owned by the same person. I stayed up ten minutes and couldn't stand the blue no more. That's sad, blue was my favorite color.


Friday, 10 February 2006

My blogging personality...

Quizzy day.

Your Blogging Type is Pensive and Philosophical

You blog like no one else is reading...
You tend to use your blog to explore ideas - often in long winded prose.
Easy going and flexible, you tend to befriend other bloggers easily.
But if they disagree with once too much, you'll pull them from your blogroll!
Tagging you to take take the quiz too!: Heather, CMHL, J*, Jack, Jenelle, M, Melanie, Neil, Networkchic, Suley, The Gr8 Saphenous.

Tuesday, 7 February 2006

Dipping my toe in political waters...

Just been to Neil's where his "conciliatory parade" to my comment was "pissed on". He has absolutely no right to take offence or feel outraged or angry at being pissed on. Absolutely not, SHE has the right conferred on her by freedom of speech to piss on him and his "conciliatory parade".

I frankly had absolutely no intention of posting on this issue. Call me whatever you feel like but I just CANNOT STAND ARGUMENTS. Specially sterile arguments. I believe that by definition arguments are sterile, no one listens to no one and every one hears whatever they wish to hear. So, for those who believe that the protestors should have acted in a mature way, which is easier said that done, how do you make yourself heard when they're entangled in their emotions.

This whole situation just shows how fragile we are. How easily we respond to provocation, whether it was meant as such or not. Don't go playing with my heart, you'd be closing the door to any rational discourse.

Put the "radicals and terrorists" who use Islam to justify their deeds aside for a minute. Let's have a face à face, you and I, the "rational Muslim". I am against violence, I condemn terrorism. How am I supposed to FEEL when watching TV I hear about these cartoons of the Prophet and see a cartoon showing him with a bomb in his turban? I was appalled, angry, I felt guilty for believing in a Freedom which led to this.

I've read a lot about whether the Danish Government is going to "cave in" or not to the demands of apology. Is this all what it comes to?

Dr. Tariq Ramadan is right when he says, in the Herald Tribune, that just because you have the right to do something doesn't mean you have to do it. That's what's called civic responsibility, he says. Jack, that's what i meant when i said: "This whole situation is tragic, more so, since it could have been avoided so easily."

Monday, 6 February 2006

Thought of the Day

"All love that has not friendship for its base, is like a mansion built upon sand."
Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Your comments

I feel the need here to post your comments on the previous post.

Networkchic said...
It is unfortunate that we live in a world that needs to be slapped in the face with images of poverty and despair before we lift our hands and our hearts to help make it better. We get so caught up in our own lives that we leave so little room for other things that seemingly have nothing to do with us. But we're wrong aren't we, it has everything to do with us. I know that I'm going to teach my own daughter to be aware of those around her, not just what's right in front of her, but everywhere - even if she can't see it. Let's hope that our children grow up to be more compassionate human beings.
Heather said...
Fitena, you have hit on a soft spot for me. I do not--or well I should say i am ashamed of the inaction of our big fat rich united states ass when it come to the crises of Africa. My crisis of the day are the children of Uganda and Sudan who are kidnapped by the Lord's Resistance Army and then through fear are made to serve as child soldiers.Thing is, If I was in the White House today, I don't know a thing that ought to be done. We always send money, but it's as though the problem lies in the seed of corruption that exists in the bureacratic powers. I can't bear human misery, it weighs on my heart as a mom. I have a child and perhaps I haven't realized that I can't save all children from those who would hurt them. I think that these thoughts sound terribly trite, so I don't like to mention them. But babies in a state of utter starvation, or forced into combat by watching their peers slaughtered as examples of what might happen to them just makes no sense to me in this world.Like the commenter before me, I want so much to teach Adeline to always be looking out for those who deserve her compassion. Whether it's an old person left to die or it's a person on the street who needs a hand up. I can't save the babies in Niger. But if we all did just what simple things we could to protest, rather than thinking merely about our own lives every minute of the day, maybe something in the world would change.
M said...
My friend just got back from working in Niger for five months. She was working in these villages out in the middle of nowhere. The stories she's come back with are incredible. She's itching to finish up her degree and go back... I'm so happy to know some of the people I know.
Jaedns said...
Providing aid is not a permanent solution, those people must be taught to become independent and productive or at least semi self-sufficient. Otherwise even the next generation would still depend on external help.
Thank you for your comments and I am with you about the fact that it's not financial help ONLY we're talking about here. Emma Thompson, on Canal+ said that she believes that the help MUST involve you personally. "Engagement" is the french term she used. Concretely, it's all about giving the lesser fortunate the means to come out of their misery and accompanying them on the road to autonomy. But then, it's also all about caring, it's all all about compassion its all about humanity.


"It is when you give of yourself that you truly give."