How a feisty girl changed my outlandish ways
Man, we men have been in the dog-box lately haven’t we? With good reason.
Many of our fellows are letting the team down you know. Perhaps, if we had been in the dog-box more frequently as youngsters, maybe we’d all be acting right?
In the event, there is always a moment that sets one on the correct path. And I don’t think it’s always glorious. Here is my here-thereto unspoken tale of what set me right (sorta, kinda).
I went to this fabulous high school that resembled the one in the Fame TV series. It was called Phuthing and its most popular exports were musos Thandiswa and Kabomo. True to form at any moment anyone in the school was likely to burst into song. Or laughter. In hindsight there were more clowns amongst us than artists.
There was a uniform laugh that we all adopted. It is the personification of a long twitter KWAAAAAA. It was a course, vulgar laugh accompanied with a bending over and the pointing of an index finger in the direction of the subject of our mirth. Usually they (the subject) weren’t laughing.
I remember many an adult being reduced to tears by it, one was our larger-than-anyone-else computer teacher who was well liked by the student body. He wasn’t always well liked at home and once found himself living out of his car.
One afternoon he sent two scholars to get some files from his boot. They found his bags filled with used clothing instead. Back in the classroom the teacher, becoming impatient sent another pupil after the others, who didn’t return either. Finally he heaved his well rounded body off to his car.
There he found a small crowd gathered and, led by the three boys he had sent, all bent over with The Laugh. Their eyes were being directed from one item of XXXX-L clothing being twirled in the air after another. The item that got the most response was the off-white underwear, with skid marks.
Soon enough the fingers extended in his direction. The rest is a horror story. One didn’t want to be on the other end of The Laugh.
Where did you want to be was with the girls. Daily, I holed myself up in the TV room and umm-ed and ahhh-ed with them over the soapies.
What wanna-be cool guys quickly learn is that doing things with girls, doesn’t mean doing them like girls. So extreme reactions like gasping, crying, screaming or generally just taking soaps seriously will get you laughed at. As they did me one day. Before I could blink, the girls around me were doubled over pointing and… horror of horrors, doing The Laugh!
Incensed I rushed at the ring leader. For effect I started to undo my belt, knowing from home the impact this action always has. Sure enough, a few minutes later she was running down the corridor screaming and I was behind her in hot pursuit, one hand menacingly waving a leather belt in the air, the other pulling up the back of my falling pants.
Suddenly she stopped.
And turned around.
And put up her fists.
This is something I wasn’t ready for; especially not in front of the crowd that had formed in the wake of the commotion.
Here I was, in an impromptu boxing ring, frozen, unsure of what to do next. She on the other hand was swinging, and sure to knock my head off if I didn’t turn on my heels.
The next recollection I have is of her being hoisted in the air, a hero, and me slinking away to the terrible echoes of The Laugh. That laugh followed me for weeks.
In hindsight, I should have stopped two seconds sooner when my lungs begged me to. Timing is everything.
Of course, everything also happens for a reason; and I don’t think I have chased another woman with bad intent since.
And no, those nights at that little place called the Lounge don’t count!