If I had a gun, I would have killed a lot of people because to me they would have talked just bullshit, I’m convinced. And if I had done any of the things they expected or some still expect of me today I would not be here or where I am today. Or that’s a bit extreme. But is it?
It is no wonder we have the kinds of kids (growing up later to being youth) today because they ACTUALLY (I’m now convinced) DO what the society (parents, family, friends, etc) dictates to or expects of them. Well, I’m not like “them [those other kids]”. Yes, I might come across as bitter and angry – and I am but for your to understand (or not) where this anger comes from, here’s what happened:
I’m sitting in my room responding to tweets and Facebook comments and with George W. Bush’s Decision Points biography next to me (as I wanted to read a few pages). This guy (let me not shame him) comes in, asking if I’m chatting, and my response is “No, I am not chatting, I’m talking (whatever your definition of what I was doing)”. He looks at Bush’s biography and asks: “If you are not chatting or reading politics books, what else are you doing?” Where are the girls?
Now thinking that this guy must be crazy or that I’m one of ‘those boys’ who go around chasing after girls or go crazy if they don’t have sex, or go around and committing crime and or robbery with my own precious time, I ask him: “What do you want me to do? You want me to go and chase every girl in this area and fuck them or go somewhere and commit crime because clearly my sitting like this, in my place, does not sit well with you?”
Well, Papa did not raise me to be one of ‘those boys’ this guy expects of me. Even better, and as I’ve previously told my colleagues and some of my friends: If I had done what people like this guy wants me to do or expect of me (whatever the hell that is), and or if I had had and kept the kinds of friends that I’ve always managed to stay the hell away from at university (where my peers did a lot of shit) and even just naughty friends I could have randomly had – I promise you with my life that I would not have turned out to being the young man I am today: responsible, minding my own business, loving my own space, reading and writing so as to keep my mind informed and active and not chasing after every girl wherever I am going, knowing what right and wrong, etc. I don’t mean to brag and neither do I claim to be perfect. I try hard to explain this to people – and older people nogal but they just don’t get it. It’s now become a serious issue that I have to explain myself to people who don’t give a damn about how I managed to be where I am today, where they seemingly have issues with my being here or managing to maintain (before their eyes) my weirdest lifestyle. It has now come to a point where I don’t have to justify myself to anyone nor do I owe anyone any explanation whatsoever except maybe Papa, Mma, my sisters and a few selected friends. And it is this “living according to our societal expectations” I wrote about in October 2011 which is a very serious problem, something I believed at the time and still believe today that it is our 21st century problem.
For example, while at home for the 2012 festive seasons I was asked questions like “Mosadi wa gago o kae (where’s your girlfriend)” and “o nyala leng monna (when are you marrying)”. My response to these questions other than to Papa, Mma and my sisters was: “Not now, please” or any other excuse I could think of at the time. Considering I’ve only worked for just a little over 4 years; that I’m only 26 years old and only turning 27 on Jan 26; that I haven’t got a house of my own (and still sleep in Papa’s dining room or in another bedroom when I go him, depending on whether my sisters are around or not and recently sleeping in the garage) – I find it strange that some people have found it fit to ask me these questions. (Of course we’ve discussed these related questions with Papa, Mma and my sisters before – some of them in passing or jokingly – but I’ve seen no need to respond to any of them the way I would to Papa).
This therefore, and in my opinion, raises serious questions about what I’ve previously understood as a “societal expectations of us”. This, I wrote about in October 2011, include certain things – and many of them nogal, some of them quite unreasonable – that are expect of us as kids growing up either in a certain family or a particular village. As a result, we – children from that society/village – grow up with the expectations of being naughty (where our parents would often be called by another parent whose child I would have moered or hit with some hard object), or with the expectations of being notorious or of being an alcoholic/drunkard, or stealing livestock and selling it a local auction or at another village, or stealing donkeys from one village and only to slaughter them in mine and selling it cooked to our community and thereby making a hell lotta money because at my home village there’s no other meant loved and eaten like a donkey’s.
These are just a few of the things our society expects of us – something I’m proud that I never became any notorious for (as far as I understand). Making girls pregnant (in or outside my village), committing certain petty crimes, being so uncontrollable even by my parents that they’d even chase me of out of their house and thereby leaving me with no choice except to squat with my other notorious peers, or going to Johannesburg to look for a job, being disrespectful and ill-mannered to the point of being hated and talked badly by everyone in my village and even the nearby villages are just some of the things this society that brought us to this world expects of us as its children – something this guy expected of me when he was shocked that I was relaxing in my room with a phone on my hands and Decision Points next to me.
I can never be like any of ‘those boys’ this guy expected of me when he said what he said when he walked into my room. Further, we can’t all be notorious just for the fun of it and just how I wish our society could start to learn that not all its children can be the same.