They Read You Cinderella
January 11, 2012 § 6 Comments
…You hoped it would come true, that one day your prince charming will come, rescue you.
That is “I can love you like that” by John Michael Montgomery. I’m a sucker for love songs, especially when there’s some old country/folk version of the one I’m used to (e.g. Dolly Parton’s “I’ll Always Love You”). I’m in my bathtub listening to songs on iTunes, and I might end up sleeping here. I came home late and opened my door a few too many times allowing 1 or 2 mosquitoes in. And since I’ve tired of looking for them and don’t look forward to being scared awake all night by their whinny sound, this was the next best choice. Anyway, Montgomery’s song has given me some sort of “aha” moment: too many women have been screwed up by fairy tales. I was going to talk about something I experienced earlier this afternoon, but I’ll start with this first.
The stories are almost always the same. Young, fair maiden meets dashing, strong, tall, swashbuckling charming prince (or of princely qualities). There are a few obstacles…yada-yada (every good story needs an arc, or it’s just bland)…they finally get together and live happily ever after. Sounds about right, yeah? I’ve had to read one of these stories to a niece before, and believe me that was one trying nighttime story (she made me run my finger under words while I read and would occasional pause me to have me read out a word just to make sure I wasn’t making it up). So now I’m left wondering, after all the Disney movies; all the sappy romance movies all my lil’ girls have watched over the years, are they all going to grow up having unrealistic expectations of the ideal mate because Walt Disney and Cinderella said they, too, will have Prince Charming? Is this why so many women end up meeting good men, but dismiss them because their subconscious has built for them from age 2 a mate that’s statistically impossible to find?
So, earlier today, I treated myself to what should’ve been a nice lunch at a nice restaurant in Osu. I had been somewhere off Oxford, and had a short time window before heading home. I’m not big on spending money, especially when everything is damn expensive in this country. Accra is an expensive place to live. It’s amazing how money flies around here. In the US, an American knows and respects the value of $100 and often spends it cautiously; A Ghanaian will blow through the cedi equivalent in a blink of an eye on needless junk. I entered and was ushered to a seat. I don’t like these pesky Ghanaian waiters who hover. You can kiss my ass, but don’t look desperate doing it. Oh, I also dislike tipping. I’m not cheap. I just don’t know how to tip. I also prefer giving on my own, and not being billed for my generosity. I’m not much of an extrovert or social butterfly even though I can swim in most social milieus, so I haven’t had enough practice to feel all that comfy with tipping.
Now giving me a menu doesn’t mean I’m ready to order. Asking me again 60 seconds later doesn’t help your cause. “Here, I’ll call you over when I’m ready. Ok?” It sorta worked, but he was back two minutes later. Fine! I ordered. I was already dreading not having gone to Zion Thai, which I reconsidered because I prefer company when I got to such places. Oh, well… burger and fries with malt and water ordered. Simple enough, I thought. Two small groups enter and are seated. I’m now beginning to realize it’s mostly Abrofo in this joint. I have to admit, sometimes I find that comforting. It can be a nice escape from Ghana, even if for only a moment. I imagine both groups ordered as I glanced several waiters walk over to attend to them. I was too busy staring at my phone waiting for a store manager I’d met earlier to call. I don’t know how many minutes passed after two long Sudoku games, but when I looked up, BOTH groups were being served! Where was my burger? Seven people- quick service; 1 person and his burger, well… It took another 6 minutes, my mean mug, a call for a manager and a “you might as well fellate him” before I got my meal. The clueless waitress had no idea what I meant. I love my white people, but Bibifo can really overdo it- four waiters serving seven people?!
Several months ago, my younger brother Joe (from a different mother and father) and I solved Accra’s public transit and traffic problem on his veranda. It was pretty cool, but then we remembered it was useless because unless you’re an Obroni god, what you had to say was worthless to anyone who had an ear. The puppet professor came on TV not long ago and gushed about how his overlords, the IMF, had approved of a 3-billion-dollar loan by his new masters-in-waiting, the Chinese. It was so sad. When I was younger in junior secondary, I preferred walking from school at Nima to home in Exhibition, Dansoman than asking my aunt for bus fare when I ran out of money on two occasions. I hate asking for any kind of help. In Ghana today, we announce with glee on every media outlet how we’ve managed to borrow from broni. 50 years ago, we had the same GDP per capita with South Korea. Today, we negotiate for ourselves 10% cuts for our oil wells, leaving 90% for those who need those resources and then pat ourselves on our backs for a job well done. I don’t need to tell you what happened to the Koreans. They say men lose their minds in the presence of beautiful women. Does the same behavior apply to black Africans around whites? Unsure? Look at how TV presenters act whenever they interview whitey.
My fries were cold, and I had wanted both mayo and ketchup. There was no point sending my plate back. With the broni-gazing two tables away, who knew when I was going to get my food back. It’s 10:33pm. George Strait’s “When Did You Stop Loving Me?” is playing. I think I’ll turn in now.
Yes, I love country.