Rough diamond (3/5)

By Drum Digital
15 April 2015

A boy who thinks he’s smart may have a lot to learn.

His father returned as Es continued. “She will wake up at cockcrow and sweep the whole ground around the hotel!” He was joined in laughter by a few young wannabe “coconuts”. The rest of the audience was annoyed. His father pushed him towards the video camera and continued with the meeting.

That evening he pointed an angry finger at Es, saying, “Never do that again. You must study your audience before you come with these jokes.” But the boy wouldn’t budge. “Oh come on, Old Timer. There’s a lot of misery all around. We need humour. It’s like beauty. You parade it and leave it for people to judge. You don’t have to feel aggrieved when some don’t respond.”

The old man knew better than to get into an argument with him. He simply said, “Be careful. One day you’ll get into trouble with that parading of yours. Tone it down, my boy. You’re too much of a rough diamond, and someone will give you a free polish!”

One Saturday, Es and his friends drove to the west of Mahikeng. A friend was getting married at Disaneng Village. DJ Magic Feet was going to deejay, with Es as his understudy. When the convoy stopped at the renowned Mlanjeni Tavern, they got out to refill their cooler boxes. With music blaring from the car, Es was showing off, dancing with a girlfriend who complemented his performance with some profane gyrations. “We’re living large!” he screamed as they danced, his huge arms floundering on either side of his clumsy chest.

Es was a dreamer who never saw expressions of disapproval on onlookers’ faces. So he didn’t see a man who was passing with a knobkerrie in hand. This guy gave the dancers a glance and muttered, “Ntwana e ya speeta,” meaning, “This boy thinks he’s smart.”

To be continued...

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