Thursday, March 25, 2010

Idle Thoughts-I have beef With...

Every once in a while, people around us will behave, or do certain acts that will rub us the wrong way. While some are inadvertent, others are premeditated. We tend to ignore some, but others are simply too irritating to let pass. Some of these are people we often ingratiate with. Some are our bosom buddies. Others are the people we have branded celebs. 

Celebs who will not respond to comments on their Facebook statuses:
We are their fans. And yes, we love them. But that doesn’t mean they should take us for granted. But why do they seek our opinions when they well know they won’t let us know of what they think of our own views? Why even bother ask us for the same? We’ll soon shun your posts. Eat your hearts out.

You can use your walls and fan pages to advertise your shows. You can let us know what views you hold on topical issues. But don’t engage us in debates you are not going to contribute to. Oh, and learn to tolerate dissent, too. All artistes are culprits in this aspect.

It’s Barbara, not Barbra!
For lack of a better word, I will call this grammar beef. American v British grammar. A friend of mine snarls every time someone spells her name without the extra “a”. She loves sounding British, I suppose. I have since learnt to tell between the two. By doing away with the extra letter, I suppose the Americans wanted to stamp their independence from our brothers in England.

It was one of those high school chronicles. One of those discourses that aim at building the art of public speaking. Debates. The motion went thus: “Fire is better than water”. One cocky student took to the floor and in a strong local dialect spoke from the opposing side. "Mbahi chairman…Imwe ba proposers, aima. Ente n’inyw’omuriro?" Literal translation: Dear Chairman and your Irrational proposers, our Cattle drink water, not fire.

He hailed from one of those cattle keeping tribes in western Uganda. In this culture, cows are deemed as precious as anything on earth you could think of. They are a measure of one’s respect, stature or dignity. A status symbol of sorts. He didn’t see how a principal source of livelihood could be compared with something he could do without.

It’s a fact I have come to appreciate. I am relatives, literally, with every soul earning their bread as a taxi conductor. From a distance, they will call you names until you give them the nod that you wish to use their services. I am addressed by several titles –I guess depending on how one perceives me; Uncle, Boss, master, name it. Only if they could use deodorants!

You be like as if…
The lingua spoken by smart-alec adolescents. Lugezigezi. Some of them carry it into their early adulthood. Some will carry it to their workplaces, too. You don’t use this kind of grammar unless you have a low rating of your own IQ. It’s a way of gaining acceptance amongst one’s peers, I will presume. We could forgive juveniles. But 20+ year-olds?

Tabloids (Read Red Pepper)
Granted, they have done great work in exposing the ills in our society. They have brought them to our attention and all. But that, probably, is where my plaudits end. How about you revise your reporting language? There’s a better way of conveying the message without sounding X-rated. We will still give you business.  "Juicy" may sound a little polite and flattering, but how on earth do you describe someone’s daughter as "waterlogged"?

- Dan B. Atuhaire

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please leave your comment here...