Rant – I Am Me

So define for me what a snob is? Merriam Webster says, “Someone who tends to criticize, reject, or ignore people who come from a lower social class, have less education, etc.”
Uncle Google’s urban dictionary says, “Anyone who thinks they are better than someone else based upon superficial factors.” Now these are some harsh and quite specific definitions, so clearly somewhere between here and there I have misunderstood what it means to be a snob in the 21st century generation living in ‘Woke South Africa’

I am a fourth generation from my mother’s side who is Swati. I am third generation from my father’s side who is Pedi. Do I speak Swati, my mother tongue? You could talk about me and I would not have the faintest idea. And how is my Sepedi? It’s basic, quite conversational but I understand it very well. In mixed company I can comfortably hold a conversation. The only barrier might be that I am a socially awkward extrovert.

I have had the opportunity to have lived in the township, suburbs and currently on my father’s plot. I still live at home and have no ambitions of moving out right now. I enjoy the solitude of the one neighbour being too far away to hear me host one man Rihanna or BeyoncĂ© sing-a-long concerts. I have become accustomed to my own company in that we don’t have the luxury of an unexpected visitor who was just passing and noticed that we were home. In the same breathe I like being in my grandmother’s home with carpents stained with the a travellers tired footprints. I have a love hate relationship with kids running across the road when they see a car coming. I like seeing childhood happening when they play umgusha, diketo, or skopti – I am reminded of me; scrawny buck teethed and still growing into my forehead.

If this is what we will deem ‘snobbish’ behaviour then I gladly accept the title. But get this right, I appreciate what I am and how my environment has shaped me. Perhaps you have had the opportunity to be more exposed to the black experience in ways that I have not and I applaud you.
When did we regard one experience to be better than another? How is my learned behaviour less black than yours? Essentially what is an authentic black upbringing? Don’t though, shame me for being different – ironically that makes you the snob and not I.

I refuse to apologise for my personal culture. One that is multilingual, fluent or not. One that has close to none of the fundamentals of the Sepedi traditions. One that is faith based and morphes to new intelligence.



The Self Aware Masochist

I have sat through thirty six hours of unbrushed hair and pyjamas, locked in my bedroom eating only astros and drinking stale wine from my water bottle. Why? Blair Waldorfe. *insert face palm emoji* I know this sounds ridiculous but Gossip Girl grips me with its basic plot of Chuck loves Blair then hates Blair then loves Blair. Pathetic as it may sound this in fact has happened, and this post is tribute to an episode wherein Blair fears that she might be the one that draws out the dark in Charles Bass Jnr.
This made me wonder then about how we say that we surround ourselves with people who defines us, we could just as well say we define those who surround us. So context being Blair’s epiphany shall we hypothesise that like moth to a flame, you can also be the mermaid in the dark of the sea lurring the seamen into the Bermuda triangle? Morbid? I’ll take it down a notch. We are all sugar and spice and all things pheromone. Who is to say that your particular scent is an sealed invitation of red sugars and a spice of best kept secrets.
The real question here is in fact this: Is it possible, even at all that there is a diagnosable condition? One that cause you to purposely reject all forms of real passion and sincere love, deliberately seeking the tastes of bitter wine from a chipped glass that is sure to cut your lip? What are the chances that one can be so broken that they seek out those who will unintentionally validate their brokeness? Can it be said then, that exists a people who have been made an accomplice to breaking a heart by the very keeper?
We are not always aware of the loves we keep. We often hope that they are the truest forms of it. And sometimes, should the stars be aligned they are. I think we are all believers of love, what it looks like, what it should feel like. I have momentarily allowed myself to miss that, watered-down what I believe in.
This is not to say that I no longer advocate love because I do. What we need is not always well dressed or adorably uncoordinated and sprinkled with random gestures of affection. What we need is unexpected, uncontainable, and impeccably punctual – wait for it.