MY children believe I am particularly gifted, in the sense that in De Waal Park in Cape Town, I am more inclined than anyone they know to accurately step into what inconsiderate dog owners have failed to pick up.
I would rather attribute it to naivety than talent. Before I moved from Joburg to Cape Town, I was led to believe that civilisation had put down roots here.
If the soles of my shoes could talk, they would tell another story.
Since my little dog died two years ago, I've been taking wide detours around De Waal Park.
Nevertheless, I still have to take off my shoes before entering my son's place. “Once a poop magnet…" he once mumbled.
While still recovering from the loss of my beloved mutt, I came to the shocking realisation that my tiptoeing days weren't over, but for another reason — to avoid running into a Jordan Peterson disciple.
What's going on here? I asked myself. They shoot up like mushrooms where you least expect them; here, there and everywhere. Where's that darn Big Pharma when you need a vaccine?
I long for the old days. I'd rather walk blindfolded through De Waal Park.
A distant acquaintance caught me off-guard the other day, right where I was sitting innocently, sipping coffee at Elgin's Railway Market, where I draw cartoons at the weekend.
Him bumping into me was purely coincidental. He had nothing else to do with his life but wander around aimlessly, he said.
He looked melancholic, and I offered to do a free drawing of him. It didn't cheer him up as I had hoped. He stared at the drawing for a long time and wiped his cheek with the sleeve of his shirt.
The problem, he explained, is that he can't get a girlfriend.
Therefore, he's an incel. That means no woman wants to touch him, not even with a bargepole, according to Wikipedia.
The only things keeping him going, he said, were the videos of his spokesman, Peterson, who understands his pain. So much so that he bursts into tears at the mere thought of the tragedy of inceldom.
That sounds far-fetched, I said, but the distant acquaintance sent me a YouTube link that indeed supports it. See for yourself:
It has something to do with masculinity, is what I've heard.
So, I said, a good start in his quest for a life partner, or at least a bed partner, would be to sound more interesting.
The thing is, at some point you'll have to talk to each other, you and the life partner/bed partner, and most people prefer original thoughts over the monotonous quotes of a guru.
As an example, I mentioned to him that not one of the Twelve Apostles could get a girlfriend, if I understand the Good Book correctly.
That's where he got offended. He said the problem with men like me is that we haven't been raised tough enough. We don't know what it means to be a man. Snowflakes. That's what we are!
Now, look, I couldn't argue with him about that. First, I draw pictures; second, I don't own a gun; and third, my little dog, Krokodil, was a chihuahua.
My dad's understanding of patriarchy was, to put it gently, inadequate. He mostly read newspapers while my mom made the big decisions — and that's just because she was more capable.
My mom wasn't necessarily always right, but she was always sure of herself. For instance, she put a stop to my dad's plan, in his mid-40s, to invest his state pension in a business venture with my uncle Laurie.
Uncle Laurie had the opportunity to buy a dairy at a bargain price back then and didn't want to take a bank loan. He had to, though, due to my dad's lack of patriarchal assertiveness.
About five years later, Uncle Laurie got a Jaguar. A sleek black one. Our family took the bus.
My mom insisted until the day she died that she was right. In later years, Clover really did give those small dairies a hard time, and Uncle Laurie had to downsize to a Ford Granada.
By that time, we only took the bus when there were more than four of us and we couldn't all fit in my dad's 1969 Volksie.
My dad was good with carrying refrigerators and that sort of thing, more so than you can say about me. Let the refrigerator stay where it is — that's one of my principles.
As for the incels, I realise we won't be dragging them away from Jordan in a Ford Granada.
He's the only one they listen to. Forget about the Greek philosopher Plato! The trouble started with him, after all, the time he came up with platonic relationships.
What they don't realise is that, in their sexless existence, they could actually find solace in that line of thinking.
Loosely translated from ancient Greek, it boils down to this: if you want something done properly, you have to do it yourself.
♦ VWB ♦
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