Keeping Up Appearances

Whoever invented social classes surely deserves  corporal punishment…and whoever it was, planted a cruel seed. The time, creativity and courage that people have employed to neutralize or overcome class stereotypes have been used to contribute to many shining innovations, but due to a need to belong as founded by Abraham Maslow in his famous ‘Hierarchy of needs and the enduring stamina’, life has taught many poor boys how to try and fit in certain social classes.

Whoever invented social classes surely deserves  corporal punishment…and whoever it was, planted a cruel seed.

The time, creativity and courage that people have employed to neutralize or overcome class stereotypes have been used to contribute to many shining innovations, but due to a need to belong as founded by Abraham Maslow in his famous ‘Hierarchy of needs and the enduring stamina’, life has taught many poor boys how to try and fit in certain social classes.

It is a common occurrence for affluent families to scrutinize and discover who their sons and daughters are moving out with, such that they don’t end up with ‘low lifes’. 

Even well spelt out Christian families have been seen digging deep to see the background of their children’s families under the pretext of knowing their moral stand.

Perhaps such circumstances are what compelled my primary school Old Boy Semuju, to masquerade to fit in a lofty class, so he can easily lure girls in that class.
Having dropped out of school shortly before we did our Primary Seven mocks, he pursued a fisherman’s life on a certain island on Lake Victoria.

Life became increasingly hard for him, he couldn’t cope with the trans-night tasks of fishing plus he couldn’t handle the foul smell of fish on all his clothes, at least that’s what he told us, so he left the lake and came back to our village.

Being unable to get a classy job due his crippled academic level, Semuju started off as a cobbler, and then he became a car washer, after a year he went to a nearby town in search of greener pastures.

Interestingly, Semuju had a strong character and an ego as huge as China. He never settled for less, at least everyone knew that about him, he loved dressing smartly as per the village standards!

For anyone who did not know Semuju and met him in the evenings, could not believe that he was actually a car washer. After work he hanged out in places, he drove the cars he washed and used them to lure girls.

One day he washed a number of cars and got a lot of money and being a Friday, he decided to go out and meet Doreen, a beautiful Munyankore girl and a graduate of Mass Communication from a renowned university. He met her the previous weekend.

Desperate to please the newly found Doreen, he picked her up in a brand new Ford Everest which his 55 year-old client left for washing, the previous evening.

Since the owner said he would pick the car the following evening, Semuju didn’t rush anything. In the morning, he drove Doreen to her home but just as they were approaching the girl’s home, her dad called her asking where she was. She was just five minutes away, so her dad decided to wait for her at the gate before he went back to his bed.

By the time Semuju rolled out of the driveway to enter the gate, the girls dad was in proper view of his car, he looked at the car and he couldn’t believe it, he wondered whether he was dreaming but he realized he was not.

Curious to see who was in the car, he came close to the driver’s seat and here he was- face to face with the car washer he left his car with 14 hours ago.

Semuju was dumb struck; the car owner was Doreen’s father! Doreen could not understand what was going on but finally her father told her to look at the car’s number plate…that’s when she realised that was his father’s newly purchased vehicle.

Whatever happened to Semuju from then was unpleasant. People need to realize many things about life but most importantly is the need to realize who we are, appreciate our accomplishments and status as opposed to trying so hard to fit in where we cannot.

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