Monday, 22 December 2014

He Writes... About Old Money, Old Love, and Old Methods of Getting People To Do What You Want.

Sorry guys, this post should have come earlier. But examination week is made more hectic than fashion week in KNUST. Pardon me.

When you thought of pinning us down, we really didn't have this in mind

TYPING: What to do when you are being threatened… by your mother?

You begin to wonder, is this really happening, to me? Is the woman who raised me up with (questionable) warmth and affection promising to snap the cord she’d already tied round my neck if I didn’t…

“… be a maid of honour to your grandma.”

You could tell my shock as I stayed silent for minutes on the other end of the phone, halting all intent of my wrist muscles to yank down the door knob, already late for a lecture. “How’s that even possible, ma? Really, don’t listen to what they say these days; Gender isn’t but a label.”

“I meant, best man, whatever, you call it whatever you want.” She barked in reply. “I just want you at the wedding, representing us. It’s so serious, if one of us doesn’t step up, she might disown us all.”

“Oh.” I respond in realization, partly mocking her opportunistic tendencies. Watching Raymond, my roommate spread out a huge… was it a curtain, or a painting?… over our window, I asked, “And you can’t do it to save us all because…?”

“Besides being your mum and giving the orders which need to be obeyed, I don’t think I can stand the sight of her romancing her fetish priest.”

My grandma’s new groom is a fetish priest, a witch doctor, a stern believer of chanting Yiddish and lying to whoever it was the voice of the ‘gods’. Her second husband was a priest, of the Christian kind. First was a priest, of the Moslem kind (who swapped her name for Khadija). So was I surprised when I saw this coming? Yes, really, I was, not quite getting the trend of her fetish to elope with priests.

“Count me out of this, mum. Why me? And not the others. You still do have four other sons––“

“Who are busy yelling around the house in hoarse voices with headsets strapped to their heads pretending not to hear a word I say.”

“And a husband who would make your every wish his command…”

“I looked it up. It’s a travesty for a sterile man to enter a shrine.”

So wait, the wedding is in a shrine? “We are still not certain dad is impotent.”

“The point isn’t your dad’s inability to get… pointed––“––I spewed out my spit––“––I need you coming home this weekend to look through a selection of smocks and face art. And it’s an order.”

“I am disobeying you.”

“I am threatening to take down your bottom drawer.”

I gasped. “You won’t do that.”

“Would burn down all your writings and replace the ashes with stuff a bottom drawer is reserved for: my sex toys!”

She disconnected before I could respond. I shoved my phone in my pocket, looking around for some comfort.

“You seem worried.” Ray calls from hammering something––I have clearly decided it’s a painting––over our windows.

“My mum. She wants me to be witness to my grandma’s wedding lest she takes down all my writing.”

“That all?” He asks with a shrug, finally finishing his work and coming down the ladder. “Only you would find something like that scary.”

Why do I ever bother Raymond would ever grasp what being understanding meant? I turned to the door, but something caught my interest enough for me to look back at Raymond. “YOU ARE TAKING THAT DOWN THIS SECOND!” I stabbed a finger threateningly at the huge poster of me all smiley with the caption “Keep Calm. You’re With KNUST’s number one Hitch doctor.”

“Relax.” He stepped in front of me before I could rip the canvas up from above. “It has a good message attached to it. It’s good for business.”

My roommate is running a matchmaking service for which I am face of and main consultant ready to help the educationally distressed find love.

“What you are doing is ruining my social life!” I tried to step around him, but anytime 
I did he shoved me back. I conceded, admitting I possessed no strength to go neck-and-neck with him, and back towards the door. “One day, you wouldn’t be in this room, and I would take that down and burn it!”

“Oh, so now I am the one being threatened.” He said humouredly, adding a raucous laugh. “I’d repeatedly knock your head against the window if I get here to see my banner absent.”

My features contorted at the sheer brutality of his threat. “I won’t be bullied!”

He chortled as I open the door. “Oh, speaking of ‘getting here’. Do well to be late today. I have some duties to consider over on that bed of yours.”

“You are not having sex on my bed!”

“Oh, would you rather we do it in your presence.” He responded with mock concern.

“Just pick back up my teddy when you are done!” I banged the door shut.

ENGL 255: Practical Appreciation. Two Hours.

ENGL 257 INTRO to Seventeenth and Eighteenth century literature. Two hours.

I walked out of the lecture theatre into the pouring sun feeling like a victor for not once running out for boredom. Then just when I could walk back to my hostel like every normal student after class did, my phone pings.

It was my mother. An MMS. A selfie at a place that looked like an airport. I shook my head dismissively and walked on. It took less than five steps for it to dawn on me.

Holy cow!

As if to give me enough ground for worry, there was a follow-up ping:


Oh no. I groaned. And immediately began dialling Raymond’s number. A horri-fucking interjection escaped my lips as his phone went straight to voicemail.

Sex is the only thing that kept him off snap-chat!

I began running. My legs were killing in these tight Tims I’d decided to wear. But I didn’t mind. My roommate… my mother… having sex… the words scattered over my brain in so many ambiguous orders. Supposing my mother got to the room and found out I was living with someone who had more sex than a married man (my father)… I should be looking at the end of my schooling career.

I sped through my hostel’s lounge area, and saw my mum nowhere around. Crikey. Perhaps, she’d already been to my room and was pulling Raymond’s ear out of my bed?

I decided to think positive. She musn’t have gotten here so soon, I finalize with optimism although I refuse to check the time the MMS was sent after turning off my phone’s airplane mode.

I quickly unlocked my room door.

“Raymond!” I barked at him, covering my eyes as true to my suspicions he was making a girl happy and my bed unhappy. “My mum is on her way!”  I run around the room and went about shoving their clothes under his bed.

“A second!” He screamed pleadingly, “I am clooooose...” His voice petered out in an ecstatic shrill.

“I’m nowhere near close!” The skinny girl beneath him protested.

I wondered how she intended getting anywhere near close being crushed by roommate.

“What’s this?”

The hairs on my neck stood erect as familiar voice called behind me. “Oh, ma!” I turned abruptly to face her in mortification. “You shouldn’t have seen this. I should have closed the door right when I came in… I… I…” My voice turned incoherent drenched with worry.

“Ma-ma!” Apparently, my roommate had visions when he was close to coming. Last week, he saw Jesus.

“I can explain.” I walked towards my mother to edge her out of the room when my roommate wasn’t bent on stopping. And the girl below him was just wrapping her legs over his buttock, showing no signs of letting him go if she didn’t ‘get close’ too. My roommate had that effect on girls.

My mother batted my hands away, walked past me and moved over to the bed.
It was then my eyes caught sight of what she was more interested in.

There up against the window, was her son, smiling at her, ordering her to keep calm because she was with KNUST’s number one hitch: him.

She turned to me with a triumphant smile. I could sense the blackmail at tip of her lips. I don’t suppose you dad knows that, her expression was saying. “So, is now the perfect time to look at traditional smocks and avant-garde face painting?”


 My mother laughed a mirthless laugh, “Listen to your roommate, he’s a clever one.” 
She said, then brushed past me to exit the room, just after slamming her latest edition of Instyle Traditional Weddings against my chest.

Oh, oh, oh, ooooh….”


To be continued…

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