Archive for category troski
Growing up was fun and sometimes difficult because I couldn’t get away with much. There was no way I could insult a playmate without getting a scolding from a passing adult. There was no way I was going to see or hear an insult on TV or in a movie. There were fewer television programs back then.
I still remember Aku Shika as one of my favourite Ghanaian movies. The movie producers made up for their poor equipment by producing educative, funny and generally better movies. The ever popular Sunday evening Osofo Dadzi was not popular because it was the ‘only’ show but because it remained innovative, comic and stayed true to its moral themes.
This post was inspired by Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood and an observation made by Graham.
Things have definitely changed.
It is not now as it hath been of yore;—
Turn wheresoe’er I may,
By night or day,
The things which I have seen I now can see no more.
Are we slowly descending into a Culture of Insults? I think we are! And I’m not even talking about politicians here. I’m talking about the many insults trotro drivers and taxi drivers hurl at each other and other road users. I am talking about the local Ghanaian language movies that sell for cheap and find their way into our homes and broadcast to our television sets. I am talking about all the insults we are taking in and likely to give back after they have festered and can’t be suppressed any longer.
If there is something I hate about public transportation, it is that trotro drivers and their mates insult just about everyone they encounter in the line of duty.
– How many times haven’t trotro drivers honked at and insulted private drivers who are waiting ahead of them at a traffic light? [moments before the light turns green].
– How many times haven’t trotro drivers overtaken and insulted private drivers who [have made the conscious effort to] respect the speed limit, road signs and the zebra-crossing
– I can’t count the number of times I’ve heard a trotro driver insult a private driver or a pedestrian just for the sake of it; calling a private driver ‘a privileged *insert expletive*’ is so commonplace that some passengers in these buses laugh or throw in their insults for good measure.
I can’t stand insults in Ghanaian movies, especially those that are meant to incite laughter . Why can’t Agya Koo, Judas and Kyewaa say or do something funny or say something witty?
– Casting my mind back to Kwaw Ansah’s Love Brewed in the African Pot, I wonder where all the smart people in the Ghanaian movie industry went. Can’t we simply produce a comic moment that will be as memorable as the closing scene of the #LBitAP any longer? Without resorting to insults?
– Unless I’m wrong, everyone of these movies is supposed to carry a socio-cultural message. You can check their titles or watch how in the end the good always triumphs over the evil, how Ghanaian traditions are upheld and portrayed in all of its splendour. [the typical Ghanaian storyline]. However, what the audience take from these movies are the many insults. The chain of insults can be heard playing on people’s cell phones and the latest of them are actually discussed.
– You find adults laughing when they hear kids throwing these same insults around because they happen to be quoting Agya Koo or Kyewaa. (And before you think that you don’t fall in this category, remember that ‘this category’ happens to be the majority of the Ghanaian population).
Don’t tolerate this creeping phenomenon. Don’t let us stand by while Ghana descends into a culture of insults.
Reproach a kid you see insulting another kid because that is the Ghanaian thing to do. And, remind an adult to watch his/her language [if the circumstances permit] because that is the Ghanaian thing to do.
I’ve had 2 interesting experiences these past few days and it just occurred to me that most of us have been taking a lot for granted. I’ve always noted this but it really hit me over the weekend.
Case 1: I was in [front] a cab with 3 women [from a funeral] in the back talking about another lady. In summary, this lady was shagging her best friend’s husband for 10years until the house-maid reported to a neighbour, who helped to ‘catch’ her pants down with the husband of her friend. At one point drawing the driver and I into the conversation, ribbing us about how men can be ‘wicked’.
Case 2: I was in the back of a trotro and this man in the middle seat is talking about the money he was going to deliver to another person. Apparently he was running late. [Not unlike the MTN man calling his burger friend]
Let us look at Case 1:
Anyone who cared to learn the identity of the cheating friend and husband could have found them with the amount of information the ladies were throwing around in the cab.
I gathered the general area of residence of the chatting ladies. Where the subjects of the story lived, their business place and [the fact] that the cheating woman in question was in the business of sleeping around.
Why would anyone discuss such a sensitive issue (bothering on) defamation with total strangers using real names, locations etc.?
Who ever does that? Who talks about the amount of money they’re carrying? Any person on the bus could have sent a text message to get him waylaid. Why did he have to mention that he was carrying money, the amount and where he was supposed to meet his friend? Couldn’t he have simply sent a text message?
People who use public transport often give out too much information wittingly or unwittingly
1. Talking on cellular phones
2. Chatting with a friend on the trotro or taxi
3. Chatting with a taxi driver about personal issues/ problems or unwittingly talking money-matters in a taxi. [Taxi drivers have been known to lead armed robbers to houses of people they picked up]
We have to be able to determine whether it is ‘safe’ to discuss something in a public setting or not. Because like in all things we have a choice to make and in this case it is a choice to protect personal information. A decision that might even save your life and property.
Many reasons account for why cars breakdown. It is tough if your car breaks down in the middle of nowhere or in the middle of #Accra traffic, tougher if you are riding alone. You’ll be lucky to be driving with a few good friends in the back, like I assume was the case of this JAG.
Let us just assume that some of the cars in Ghana are too old, poorly maintained and with non-existent servicing history.
But a JAGUAR too?
It is rare to see a jaguar (with crown and all) panting by the curb in need of some torque / horse-power from behind: begging for a push!
Now that is a sight to behold!
Only two reasons why I’ll sit in the front passenger seat of the trotro (3 actually)
1. If It is the only available seat on the bus
2. If I really can’t bear sitting in the back because of my long legs (read, close seats designed to maximize fare)
3. When the mate opens the front door because the bus is still moving
1. I am scared! Darn right I’m scared!! Now, if you are a driver and you sit in another equally ‘bad’ drivers car you definitely know what I’m talking about. Just multiply that craziness by a factor of 2. Who am I kidding 10, and then you’ll know why I don’t want to sit in the front seat.
2. You get the best view of the house (read trotro) from the back seat anyway.
3. I’m reminded of TLC Scrubs everytime someone jumps into the front seat of a trotro…weird! lol
Just a trotro twist of things this Friday. A Rainy Friday in Accra means a muddy Friday!
The rain started pouring as soon as I got inside the trotro. [Grateful]
Fresh air gets in the bus and in my face and I’m all ready to enjoy a nice trotro ride at a time of the day when it could have been a hot and sticky ride. [Grateful]
The rain is getting in the bus, the passengers by the windows are quickly shutting the windows.
SUDDENLY EVERYTHING CHANGES
Slowly it gets hot in the bus and there is no chance of the passengers by window opening it a crack because the rain is really pouring at this point. [wishing I was home]
Suddenly one passenger makes a sound, drawing everyone’s attention…drops of water were collecting on the ceiling of the bus and dripping on her…wetting her by the drop. Before long drops have collected on all sagging parts of the ceiling.
People are getting beat by the rain in a bus? Of all places to be beaten by the rain.
Everyone is calling for the mate’s duster (trotro-speak) at this point.
Just when I thought I was one of the few lucky ones, a drop landed on my hand. [wishing I was home x10].
It was literally raining in the trotro at this point…everyone was repositioning themselves to prevent getting wet.
[The passengers were pelting the driver and his mate with questions and they were fielding them as they came, trying to lighten up the mood by blaming the greedy car-owner who doesn’t care]
The rain had stopped by the time I got down. Lucky me!!
Freedom from the heat (and odours)at last; welcome fresh, clean air.
First, it was raining in the trotro and now I have to trudge mud all the way home.