OPINION: Deprivation of any kind is an anti-social and anti-uBuntu trait

2017-04-06 06:02
On the runLunga Adam

On the runLunga Adam

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This past weekend I caught sight of an acquaintance having a go at a piece of pork outside my favourite joint and I developed the need to have a bite-if you catch my drift–but he spurned my advances, so to speak.

I walked off a disappointed man, but that was enough ammunition for this column.

Seems strange that a society well known for the virtues of uBuntu, the sharing and showing of compassion towards fellow humans, yet in equal measure, is possessed of ukuvimba. this has come to define us.

Saturday’s encounter with the man at that chesa nyama was not an isolated incident.

In my nearly three decades of existence, I have seen this practice play itself out, and yours truly has been on the receiving end.

I’m not playing victim here, for I have also, on occasion, deprived others of okusiwa phantsi kwempumlo in what seemed to be their hour of need.

Let’s be honest, though: those who will find you feasting and develop a desire to join you are probably not that hungry at that moment, and would not care even if you had last eaten 72 hours prior.

They just seem to derive some pleasure from “helping” you finish your grub.

The funny thing about these kinds of people is that in most cases, meat is always the most needed item on the platter.

That explains why some often develop the ingenious manner of placing the meat underneath the pap or rice, before asking a one to join them.

Normally, the invited person who take one look at the plate and suddenly lose all desire to eat.

So the plan would be to eat the smothered meat last.

I recall a time in our childhood when our mother would call for one to come home while playing with friends on the street.

They’d try to come after one, of course, and would be told by said mother that they were not called for.

Usually, these secret ‘mother-son’ meetings would happen on the occasion she’d come back from town or the shopping mall.

Once inside the house, mother would take out some delicacy-Kentucky Fried Chicken or fish and chips–and instruct you to sit down and feast.

At times this would be accompanied by a mild tongue-lashing along the lines of, “Sufuna ukondla ilali apha. Wena uyatya kumakwabo?”

We all loved those moments, didn’t we? But let’s agree on one thing: that was ukuvimba in its Higher Grade form.

This practice even reared its ugly heard during the era of “sgqa”. That was when, as kids, we’d scream “sgqa!” to whichever friend showed up in possession of some delicacy.

We’d run up to said friend, calling on him to share. However, not all of us marvelled at this sharing notion.

As soon as one uttered that dreaded word, the possessor of the delicacy would gobble up such a morsel in one go, leaving the rest of us disappointed and hungrier.

This would culminate in ‘revenge’, and so the vicious cycle continued.

I have seen grown men reduced almost to tears from being victims of ukuvimba. Funerals are not spared, check the disproportionate allocation of food portions.

I ask myself, will we ever rid ourself of this selfish act.

Even nocturnal activities between consenting adults can also fall victim to this act of deprivation called ukuvimba.

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