Black ous, slow down

2012-06-19 08:56

David Moseley

Hell-o-o-o bla-a-a-a-ack South Afri-i-i-ica-a-a-a. I aaaaam writi-i-i-i-ing toooo you slo-o-o-o-owly so that you will understa-a-a-a-nd what I am sayi-i-i-i-ing. Na-tu-ral-lyeeee, as a white Eng-lish spea-ki-i-i-i-ing South Africa-a-a-a-a-n, this is the only way I can communica-a-a-ate with yooooooo.

(Some of you multilinguists might confuse the above with speaking whale. But no, you're wrong. It's definitely White English African Language, far more prevalent than White Suburban English Xhosa or White Suburban English Zulu).

There's a lot of miscommunication in our fine land. Some of it may have to do with the fact that there are 11 official languages, some of it probably down to the fact that 99% of the people entrusted to deliver the important messages are just poephols. But more than anything, it's probably because no one really wants to embrace each other the way supposedly loving countrymen and women should be.

Well, white English speaking South Africans have solved the problem. All you have to do, when speaking to any non-English South African, but especially a black South African, is talk at least 74% slower than usual.

Seriously, it's almost a language in it's own right. Pull in to any petrol station in a plummy Cape Town suburb, sneak into any home where domestic helpers outweigh family members, or listen closely the next time you're buying your Imported Swiss Granola Muesli at Woolworths, and you'll witness this incredible, unofficial 12th South African language.

Rather than taking the easy option of learning Xhosa, Zulu or even Afrikaans, white English South Africa has taken it upon itself to devise an entirely new and improved language for the whole nation to utilise. To learn and perfect this entirely undeaming language, all you have to do is elongate your vowels to the extent that you sound like someone who inhaled all of the Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. It also helps if you cram three-quarters of a Vide e Caffe muffin into your mouth.

To practice your new all-inclusive, nation building language, talk to small children, remembering to widen your eyes to the extent that it appears you are trying to talk down a lion attack and to nod at the end of each word so as to reinforce your friendly message of goodwill and to put the non-English speaker at ease. By creating entirely new dipthongs, adding in the odd "sharp" to your conversation, and nodding solemnly when your subject starts to squirm, you'll be able to break down all language and cultural barriers. Heck, by the end of the chat you're practically part of the family, and bound to be invited over to share the umqombothi.

So, black South Africa, stop being misunderstood. Take a leaf out of White English South Africa's book and learn this empowering new language. The next time someone starts talking to you like Bill Cosby with his head in a fish tank, reply in a similar fashion:

Ye-e-e-es, slow speaki-i-i-ng white per-so-o-o-on. That is a love-leeee car-diga-a-a-an you ha-ve onnnnn. But hon-est-ly, I think the sales assis-ta-a-a-ant was ta-ki-i-i-ing the piss when encour-aging yoooo to buy those plea-ted chino-o-o-oos.

Alternatively, just give the bloody soutie a klap and tell them "hey, speak properly, man". That should also do the trick.

- Follow @david_moseley on Twitter.

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  • Siyanda - 2012-06-19 09:15

    you are a retard

      theo.konings.9 - 2012-06-19 11:06

      Yes You are !

  • TheyTookMyNickLaZynEko - 2012-06-19 09:22

    defining people as 'black' or 'white' is 'racist' ok.

      cody.cross.1213 - 2012-06-19 13:01

      No defining people as "black" or "white" is factual not racial

  • Bergie - 2012-06-19 09:37

    Judging from the comments I would say that satire and irony is completely lost on the average south african. As a nation I would say that we are a little bit thick, probably because we do not read enough.

  • Felix - 2012-06-19 09:59

    Bwahahaha, so many knee jerk reactions. As a soutie I can confirm this weird taal and admit that I am guilty of it too (with some funigalore thrown in).

  • cody.cross.1213 - 2012-06-19 10:38

    David, David, David, Why do you expose yourself (not literally people) to the pseudo intellectual critics with these articles that you write? I find that these critics fit in well with Mel Brooks’s interpretation of a critic. “After the birth of the artist, came the inevitable afterbirth, THE CRITIC” Lighten up critics this is not meant literally!!

  • Jeanette - 2012-06-19 10:40

    I think it is delightful, and so right - especially the nod! I do it to my gardener all the time! and I love him dearly. Well at least it gives my gardener a chuckle for the day. The old mama is a bit crazy

  • helmut.smrz - 2012-06-19 10:54

    All about nothing

  • Dumbile - 2012-06-19 11:03

    I can't believe you are still writing articles for this publication.

      cody.cross.1213 - 2012-06-19 12:24

      @Dumb.. I cant believe that you can write!!

      cody.cross.1213 - 2012-06-20 19:15

      Dear Dumbile I think you need to go to the isiZulu section on News 24 and post these comments there!

  • Citroes - 2012-06-19 11:08

    Its actually quite painful to read the comments. Does missing the point and not having a sense of humour qualify you as an idiot. It certainly looks that way.

  • marion.woldendorp - 2012-06-19 20:18

    ha ha David just love all the comments of the people who once again have jumped on the race bandwagon and have not got your humour!

  • whozdatgal - 2012-06-19 22:43

    Can people please relax! Yall missed the point of the article. If you find this article a little racist, I'm worried about both your sense of homour and level of intellect!

  • Jesse Palmer - 2012-06-20 00:46

    That sad day when you realize nothing will ever get better. I'm sure many people found this article entertaining. But how about you put in the same amount of energy in writing about understanding at least one vernacular language and either English and/or Afrikaans could bridge the communication gap between all South Africans? It doesn't matter that there are 11 official languages here. Learn the language of the region you reside. I don't care that I don't know Zulu or Xhosa. As someone from north of Northern Cape- I know Tswana, Afrikaans, and obviously English. There has to come a point when we stop dressing up our ignorance as "satire". Do you think a non-Chinese Asian living many years, if not all their life in China doesn't know any one of the Chinese languages? It's just a pity our government is run by ape a***s, vernacular should long have been taught in every school from the earliest grade possible, not varsity. And before someone comments about why not instead teach your child French or Chinese or any one of these overseas languages I have two answers for you. 1- English is the international business language, even those powerful Chinese & the French & the Spanish are learning it. 2- as long as your child is growing up and breathing the South African air and has no Chinese/French heritage, let your child learn a South African language. It's not just good to recognize where you come from, but also to recognize where you are.

      timmy.ditsele - 2012-06-20 07:53

      Usually the people who understand the most are the one s who went out and learnt a local language.Nothing but respect for you. SALUTE.

      Roulon du Toit - 2012-06-20 10:01

      If David can learn a new language in the time it takes to write an article, then he is either a genius or writes really really slow. I'm Afrikaans, but I revert to English when speaking to non-Afrikaans people. Let's meet each other halfway.

  • mtlhavanirecksons - 2012-06-20 07:54

    Well put David. Though sum racially obsessed freaks missed the point, retards!

  • Jeanette - 2012-06-20 10:01

    Thanks David for a great tongue in cheek article. Why is it that we are all so angry and mean spirited ? Making a sharp and nasty or sarcastic remark is not clever - it mostly shows that a person is insecure, sometimes not terribly well read ( note : I did not say well educated), feels threatened enough to lash out at anyone or anything. Everyone all over the world tend to speak differently to someone that doesn't speak their language. We all make arses of ourselves at some stage. Go for it David! your articles are worth a read.

  • Shannon Butler - 2012-06-22 15:25

    Lol very true, its gotten less prominent over the years but it still annoys me to no end!!!

  • Johan De Beer - 2012-06-23 22:25

    Wahahaaa! Excellent! But honestly, I do not think that only English speaking people do that, and not only to black people. We do that in Europe too!

  • robert.w.morton.5 - 2012-06-25 00:44

    Please tell me he's from Cape Town and please tell me he doesn't get paid for whatever this thing is...

  • Lindi Portia Mogale - 2012-06-27 23:18

    Loved the article it was quite funny. Could remember all the time I've had someone talk to me like that

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