Grunt – 23 October 2014


As you may well know, I sit in front of my laptop on Sundays evenings, waiting for inspiration. I stare at the screen until something strikes me. It’s a waiting game sometimes. So I was extremely pleased to receive a gift from no less a person than President Jacob Zuma himself. Naturally, he isn’t aware that he presented it to me; it’s all rather secret. In essence, his gift is rather small, but immensely valuable, consisting, as it does, of only a few precious words: “Corruption is a western concept.” Isn’t that a phenomenal pearl of wisdom from one the century’s great thinkers?
And it’s so thought-provoking, leading anyone with a modicum of intelligence to consider some of the other western concepts that deserve immediate universal condemnation. It certainly had me doing some serious soul-searching, especially since so much of the South African way of life seems susceptible to the same denunciation, and worthy of being ditched forthwith by everyone. I was thinking of creating an advertisement calling for loyal South Africans to abandon pernicious western ways. Then I realised that my very hard-working laptop is probably a western concept as are the internet, television, and the social media – Facebook, Twitter, etc.– through which I had hoped to disseminate the message. Canvassing potential supporters by phone had the kibosh put on it because the phone and its cellular progeny are also pretty western contraptions – and it simply wouldn’t do to be caught using one. So I got into my car – no, damn it! I couldn’t if I was to be true to the cause; I’d have to walk because cars are really western, particularly those big black ones with the lovely flashing blue lights and the screaming sirens so beloved of local politicians going to address meetings where they verbally hammer all that is western. That’s why the Chinese are allowed to take over our economy: they’re not western, although they do wear suits, and drive cars, and use cell phones, and possess all the other gizmos. Back home, Beethoven sounded wonderfully appropriate and distinctly western. Absolutely terrific!