Thursday, November 26, 2009

Babies’ Night Out

So, my colleague is dining out at eleven ‘midnight’, when a tight, comely cluster of barely-stopped-suckling cubs ‘swashbuckle’ in. The oldest of them cannot be more than twelve. We used to be timid in our time. These kids are cool and confident; making business calls, ordering ‘haute cuisine’ and acting cosy and lovey-dovey. They grow up so fast, now!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Parental (Un)Control

When some parents settle it that even parental-uncontrolled DSTV is not engaging enough to enthral their adventurous adolescents, they line their pockets with lucre, and chauffeur them to the prepossessing positive influence of the Accra Mall; leaving them there on their own, obligingly. These kidults then haunt the ‘complicated’ corridors with purpose until after dark.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Children and Pastimes

This week, let's explore children and leisure in the City of Accra (knowing that many kids from poor homes already work, and have no time to put up their infant feet). Pointedly, what pastimes are parents obliging their children to pursue.

Friday, November 20, 2009

One-Month Romeo & Not Quite Juliet

Cliques of playas-in-their-prime ‘peacock’ around Adabraka town and other folksy parts of Accra. They have hours and purse-pride aplenty, and precious little self-respect; devoting days and dollars to shifty, married women, pulling out all the stops to knock her down (and, hopefully, not up) and score an ego point. They go ‘Full Romeo’ until the dame is ‘tabled’. Then, they bring down the curtain. Drama over, she goes back home troubled, used, but smiling.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Cupid’s Bubble

Between the loan-lined lives, the arranged ego-calls and accidentally dropped names, they got hitched hurriedly. Seven sad days later, they mutually discovered double-dealing deceit. He was not half important; he’d lost his homemade humour; she did not have an American passport; and she could not fry a chip; they were both drowning in debt.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Ugliness of a Cheater-Beater

A pendulum swing to the third month after the whirlwind romance, proposal, wedding and exotic-islanding, he ‘wormed’ home late one night. He reeked of whisky, sweat and cheap, cheap sex. He did not say hello, could not. He just sprang and slapped the angel in her face, mumbling something about her sitting in his chair. Fuelled by filth and guilt, the force (no farce) of his swinging arm flung a condom pack out of his shirt pocket. Guilty!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Trust, Lust, Thrust & Dust

He tailed his wife to the playboy politician’s country home. It was 3 p.m. She was supposed to be at work at the city centre. He rapped on the door, wailing and yelling to her to come out, but she did not. The good-time Charlie emerged and smirked, “Yes, I’m shagging your wife, what can you do about it?”

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Stranger Downstairs

They were a spicy, flaming item for most of a year, and had been merrily married for two or three months. She stirred awake in the dead of one night; his side of the bed was empty and cold. She crept down the stairs to look for him. He was nowhere, and the doors were all secure with the keys in place. She eyed the portal to his private room. The one he always kept under lock; the one she had never stepped into; not even to clean.

A sliver of multicoloured light is shooting out from behind the door. There is a chink in the doorway. What happens next all seems like a dream. A humming holds her mind and hauls her towards the door. There are candles everywhere: red candles, blue candles, white candles, big and small, ordinary and scented. There are also ginormous, grotesque masks. The room is swelling (and her head swirling) with hollow haunted chanting. A butt-naked man squats in the middle of it all. It’s her husband – the man she did not know!

P.S.: Totally true story; she filed for divorce.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Bruising Breakups

Women in Ghana used to bad abusive relationships; much more than men. Now, it’s difficult to say who’s more likely to move on when the shit hits the fan. This week, we will explore the high divorce rate (especially among marriages under 5 years) and some of the more bizarre causes I have bumped into.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Facebook Tone

How often do I hear somebody say at a facebook page, “I knew that girl in school. She’s now become so fair!”

Thursday, November 12, 2009

A ‘Shady’ Playing Field

A capricious count of the jackpot jobs, luxury lairs and comfy cars in Ghana are held down by men who will ace the clouded colour test. One questions what the companies are interviewing for, or who the banks are backing.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Marilyn Effect?

When will some obliging ogre pull the plug on the many dumbass light-brown divas with thin talent in Nigerian and Ghanaian movies, and put us out of our misery? If they are in there for their dubious ‘good looks’, then please rip them out and splurge them instead on gloss magazine pages and still-picture exhibitions!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The League Table

In this (cool) coal-coloured country, most of the skilled, delicious, wonderful women, who have smoothly scaled the prized professional pinnacle, while harmonizing hundreds of happy homes, would have flunked the toxic tone test. But they excelled where it mattered most. Now, tone that!

Monday, November 9, 2009

2 of a Shameful Kind

A leading telecom company and an international bank in Ghana employ mostly manila-skinned demoiselles to man their public spaces, solely on that sepia note. These lamp posts wear ugly frowns from dawn to dusk, mistaken that it adds up to their alleged allure; pretending that no one’s figured out their facade. Enough!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Colourism – The Brown Paper Bag Blows about in Accra

This week, we will explore something of the concept of the brown paper bag in Accra. I do not have to explain the brown paper bag test, do I? It is quite a dangerous topic, but that is why I am so excited about exploring it with you.

P.S. For an explanation of "brown paper bag" please click here

Friday, November 6, 2009

A Realistic Path?

Weighing the raw arithmetic, more youth counting on football will end up at zero than with the goal of a millionaire’s mansion. The algebra is much more agreeable in the ‘schooled’ professions. The penalty for wrong choice is less risky.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Socio-Economics of Sport

Spirited sport is a newfangled culture in economically emergent Ghana, which is much more than sport or leisure. It is meeting like-minded people. It is keeping the corporeal lines trim. It is staying out of teen trouble. It is breaking out of patrimonial poverty. It is a genuine, earnest profession. It is a status symbol for old money and nouveau riche.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The Dropouts Became Rich...And Changed Everything

Barely 10 years ago, professional sports were for directionless dropouts ... or was it? It was embarrassingly evident when our sports heroes (and villains) tickled the pretentious press with unintended meanings and cremated clich├ęs. Michael Essien (not quite a dropout) et al sneaked away to play, as maladroit mercenaries, and rode back, as rich royalty. Now parents dole dollars to school soccer coaches to start kick-abouts for their kids after class. Nobody frowns on a young man spending all daylight moulding muscle and sharpening skill.

Sporting Culture

Dear Reader,

I was not going to blog this week for personal reasons. However, I miss writing, and need it for soul therapy – something swimming has failed to help with. Speaking of swimming, the theme for this week’s posts is Sports. What does it mean to different people in Ghana’s cities? Probably a very mundane theme, but I hope you will stick around.