Dashiki Dialogues: A number for your word

2011-11-25 10:57

Clever kids on the streets of my neighbourhood keep a fatal fascination with numbers.

In fact, anyone with roots in the township knows this for sure, for it’s probably the case across the nation’s risky streets.

Here I’m talking about the thug-ish types with a wicked tale for every scar and wound.

These boys pepper their speech with numerals to substitute adjectives. There’s a digit for every situation.

If you ever doubted how mathematics gains a street sheen to codify a new hard-living language, these fast-talking ruffians won’t just explain it frankly to you, they’ll tell you “9-9”.

And if you come across as disrespectful, you might catch a 38. That means you just got a hot slap in the face for bad computing.

On really hot days, a nasty smell takes over the air. This is because some of these hooligans have taken to peeing anywhere.

Somebody needs to tell them that to not use the loo to 6-9 spoils the air for everyone. One thing that doesn’t add up here, at least for me, is whether they get to wash their hands after handling their 4-5s. I mean, this is proper etiquette, the basic 1, 2, 3s of hygiene, you know.

Speaking about handling private numbers, I recently overheard some boys joking about how they’ve been blessed with an 8-10.

This is the age of enlargements after all, so you have to double the maths on your machismo limb.

So that if you’re the type that’s into one-night stands, you might hit a 1-0 on some impressionable 9 or a hottie.

That means you’ve scored – it’s 1-0 and you are unlikely to be seen again by the same broad.

Be careful, though, living like that might just make you another statistic, catching the three letters H ... I ...?V.

And no matter how slick the 2-6 you tune yourself is, self-delusion is just that.

These number peddlers keep their love for mathematical speak when they fall on hard times and do some jail time for whatever miscalculation.

The toughest among them gets to hold high rank in gangs named numerically too.

There are the 26s and the 28s. Plus the 27 gang that the now-infamous Zola-7 has been invoking into his gimmicks.

So next time you catch some heated numbers flying about in street corner banter, you’ll understand that it’s a dashiki dialogue of survival livelihoods that must always address the bottom line – the singularity of bread calculations.

» I’m on Twitter @Percy_Mabandu

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