The Chicken Who Cried Fowl

I had a birthday this week. Many of you failed to wish me well. Fine. Don’t expect me to be there for you when days are dark and friends are few.

Out here on the North Coast, in the 4399, the days are darkening earlier than they are in, say, Muizenberg. And as for friends being few, I know homeless lepers with wider social circles than me. I throw cocktail parties and mingle with myself. I get to play my own music and I’m my own bouncer. I’m not saying it doesn’t turn ugly on occasion, but at least nobody calls the cops.

The thing about living in Durban is that you can’t lie in bed at night and read with your windows open. By the time you get to the second chapter, you’re covered in housebreakers, mosquitoes, feral moths with wings the size of hang-gliders and praying mantises big enough to claw your eyeballs out. That’s at night.

During the day I have to keep everything closed to prevent the monkeys and the chairman of the body corporate from getting in. I can hear something on the roof right now. It’s probably a hit man. Or a hit monkey. They charge less.

You live in a complex in the middle of the bush, that’s what you are going to get. Monkeys wanting a banana and the body corporate wanting a word about the goings-on in your unit. That’s what they call it. A unit. What unit are you in? Is your unit bigger than my unit? Residents are complaining about the state of your unit.

One of these days I’m going to do a Wee Willie Winkie and run naked through the complex, tapping at the windows and crying through the locks. I’ll show them the state of my unit, alright. I’ve been single for a long time. My unit is not a pretty sight.

Anyway. Let’s move on.

People with faces like diseased gallbladders have been complaining about a radio advert for a company that sells security gates. The type you slam shut in the nick of time, leaving the murderer to rattle the bars helplessly. He knows that if everyone had a gate like this, he would have to move to Australia. But he has seen Border Patrol and knows they will arrest him at the airport because he can’t spell Kiwirrkuua and has a packet of wine gums he didn’t declare.

The ad goes like this:

Voice 1: “What you inside for, boet?”

Voice 2: “Eish, I was so hungry. So I walk up to the kitchen by the boss’s house and grab a roast chicken. The madam, she slammed the Xpanda door in my face. No way out. That is how I ended up in jail, with no chicken. Eish.”

This has been giving me sleepless nights. If the madam shut the gate before he could get to the chicken, then surely he would have hot-wired the madam’s car and driven away. But it appears he already had the chicken in his possession when the madam shut the gate.

So we have Boet in the kitchen with the chicken. Why did he not simply leave via the front door? And if the gate was on the front door, did this house not have a back door?

What stopped Boet from giving the madam the choice of either opening the gate or having her legs broken? This is standard operating procedure for any self-respecting burglar who finds himself trapped by a cunning madam.

I can only think that Boet, weak with hunger, was shoveling wings into his face when the madam either overpowered him or the police arrived. No, it couldn’t have been the police. They would have been incapacitated by the smell of roast chicken. Boet would have had their guns in a flash while they stood around, heads lowered, drooling down their uniforms. It must have been an armed-response company.

Like the two concerned citizens who lodged complaints with the Advertising Standards Authority, I am also outraged by the advert.

Boet is in jail for stealing a chicken. Not even a raw chicken or a wild chicken, but a chicken that madam had spent hours in the kitchen roasting. She was probably slaving over a hot stove trying to get the trimmings ready before her lawyer husband got home from a hard day of raiding his clients’ trust funds.

Boet doesn’t deserve jail. He deserves to have his hands chopped off. Yes, I know this isn’t Saudi Arabia. But over there, women aren’t allowed to drive. Is that really such a bad thing?

This country could learn a thing or two from the Saudis. For instance, three men were forcibly removed from a festival in Riyadh this week after it was deemed that women could find them irresistible.

“A festival official said the three Emiratis were taken out on the grounds they are too handsome. Members of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vices feared female visitors could fall for them,” the Elaph newspaper reported. The world has a lot to learn from this enlightened nation.

In Britain, the cradle of civilisation, footballers have begun eating each other right there on the pitch. Borat’s people are blowing up children with pressure cookers. Hyundai has just brought out a new model. Will the atrocities never end?

On top of it all, a survey has found that 54% of young black people believe the Democratic Alliance will bring back apartheid if it wins the 2014 elections. What absolute morons. Now wonder unemployment is so high.

I’m talking about the 65% who don’t believe it.

We would be lucky if it were only apartheid that they brought back. With Helen Zille in the Union Buildings, we could expect to see concentration camps springing up around the country. Apostates will be herded together and forced to attend lectures in heavily fortified prefab classrooms. Those who are unable to concentrate will be given Ritalin.

“Repeat after me,” white men with moustaches will shout. “The DA waged an armed struggle to bring freedom to this country!”

Only 19% of whites agreed that the DA would reintroduce apartheid once in power. I don’t think so much agreed as hoped.

In other surveys this week, it was discovered that 602 166 African people speak Afrikaans at home. Of course they do. But a lot of them are speaking it in your home, not theirs.

Maak oop die safe,” is often heard. As is, “Bly stil anders sal ek … hey Boet, what the fuck is the Afrikaans for iron your face?”

See what I did there? I used racial stereotyping to get a cheap laugh. That’s why I love this country. Laughs, like lives, are dirt-cheap.

Besides, we have so many role models in government doing things at our expense that it would be silly to get our knickers in a knot over having a laugh at someone else’s expense.

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15 thoughts on “The Chicken Who Cried Fowl

  1. Chickens, security gates, old ladies…..? You need to be spending less time on your own my friend. Get yourself back into a city before you go mad. I hope it’s not too late, save yourself man……

      1. My commiserations.

        Or is that congratulations?

        Are you taking a cue from Toyo Sexwale?

        Or vice versa?

        But you know that old one: when do boys stop spanking the monkey?

        When they get divorced.

  2. Ben, my dad introduced me to your column on one of my trips to Cape Town – and now I am getting my fix of TWB via the magic of the internet web thingy (which I still don’t believe will take off in a big way [the web thing , not your column]). Anyway, I appreciate that this may be in the category of way way way too much information…but here goes…my dad has an outside dunny and one of the joys I have is to read the cape Times with the dunny door open looking out over the wonderful mountains with the sun streaming in and the southeaster providing sufficient ventilation. He has very understanding neighbours! How’s that for an open door policy!! JjjJ

    1. Duneden, perhaps.What a wonderful name that would be for the outside facilities! I am sure those Kiwis won’t mind a bit

  3. Happy belated birthday.
    It was also mine in late April and you didn’t wish me.
    We are even.
    Where is your column in the Sunday Times?
    I hunted high and low for it.
    What the hell are you doing in Natal?

  4. Why buy a newspaper when one can read it for free online(or in my case, I get paid to read it coz I do it at work during working hours)

  5. As for the Raving Looney ANCheep party squealing about DA bringing apartheid back, (just as sure as the commies trying to bring Communism back) the question must be: “Why is Cape Town not an Apartheid State?” They sure have had enough time?

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