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Who wants to be bored at home?

Who wants to be bored at home?
April 10
11:16 2018

The people who organize, host and referee the annual World Happiness Cup of Nations should stop releasing the results in bits and pieces. The results have been eternally biased against our nation for as long as I have been aware of the competition, and that’s not recently. So I don’t think we would lose much if they went all out and told the whole world not just about our unhappiness, but disclose other factors too. For example, one of the things we have been denied credit for is our boredom. Guys, we are bored and evidence abounds that we are an unentertained lot.

The first reason is really natural. No matter how beautifully the sun shines, we cannot demonstrate gratitude for this, for the simple reason that we don’t have a beach or other place that defeats boredom hands down. In fact, we only have drinking water and our endless trips to Durban, Cape Town and Swakopmund are testimony to this.

Second, no matter how well the wind blows, nature does not allow us to paraglide like those whose landscapes are vertically advantaged, especially the descendants of seafarers. The highest point in our country is Lentswe la Baratani, which automatically bans us from any activity that requires a prolonged, uninterrupted period of free fall for sporting purposes.

Boredom evidence is also plentiful within our borders! Our people imbibe the waters of immorality with a degree of recklessness that borders on self-hatred! I’m sure the only thing that keeps the parking lots at drinking spots empty is the operating hours.  I have heard claims that alcohol abuse is a problem for the youth who lack proper entertainment facilities. While the latter part of that statement is true, adults are no better off. They just have different coping strategies like chatting for hours about who died and who has been left by his spouse, which is not much of a life. Young people are more active in their boredom eradication programs, unfortunately to their detriment.

If the above sentiments do not convince you about our degree of boredom, consider what happened this past week amidst the euphoria of getting a new president and his family. During my lunchtime drive a presenter was passionately discussing the issue of opposition members of parliament un-endorsing the President’s choice of Vice. The issue was that some opposition politicians did not participate in the voting process, while others deliberately spoiled votes and did different things, all in protest against the choice. I was not planning to listen to the show but the passion that went into singling out those who did not vote was difficult to ignore.

The presenter seemed to push a very interesting envelope, which content was that opposition MPs who refused to vote had acted irresponsibly compared to those who did. Now, some MPs explained why they did not vote, giving statistical reasons and the waste of effort that comes with voting against an outright majority. I understand some deliberately spoiled votes to show their displeasure. But from the presentation of the issue, listeners were given the impression that those who did not vote had committed a heinous crime compared to those who spoiled votes. Another point of pain was that they were going to “eat” sitting allowance without taking part in the only business of the day. An indisputable truth by the way! What did not seem to add up for me was how spoiling votes could be considered a worthier cause than sitting in protest?

In my world, which many people don’t visit, vandalism of property is a crime and I equate deliberate vote spoiling as vandalism. I have also heard of strike actions on account of wage disputes or students protesting some injustice or another. In both occasions, you have people who go all out to show those who annoy them that they don’t like it! They will throw stones and break anything that can be broken, while others choose to walk gently behind the real strikers. But once the strike action is over, usually with consequences for the ring leaders, everyone, including those who got picked up by their parents at the earliest opportunity, will tell the whole world how they were involved in the mother of all strikes. Who can blame them? It’s the least you can do in such a boring country.

I have been to funerals where some people do not sing a single song, nor touch the shovel even once. Yet these people eventually partake in the closing “metsinyana” event, before going back to tell their friends who else was at the funeral.

Sorry to disappoint, but opposition MPs were just on an outing like everyone else who didn’t have a weekend plan. No grown up man wakes up with a solid plan to spoil a ballot paper, but it may just be an inconsequential way of stretching your legs, while watching the ruling party formalize their agreement and others sit it out!

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