Review: Earrings

I had my ears pierced in a shop in Arusha. Between that and learning to drive, which I will as soon as I can get over my fear of the traffic in Dar es Salaam (aggressive 4x4 drivers, minibuses with fifty people inside, cows wandering across the road, potholes galore, headlights at full beam blinding you at night, and other exotic traffic paraphernalia), I am becoming a proper adult. As everyone knows, low-end mutilation in pursuit of beauty is an important aspect of female adulthood. But then, so is trying to make your mind up if your inability to find a boyfriend is because you intimidate men with your phenomenal beauty, wit and elegance, or because you need to lose some weight and stop talking about your childhood on first dates.

I can barely bring myself to discuss men with pierced ears. It reveals a tragically un-ambitious spirit of rebellion. If you want to show your disdain for convention, get the word FUCK tattooed across your forehead or set fire to a church or marry your sister. A single earring in your misshapen earlobe doesn’t impress me: in that respect, I am very much like Shania Twain. (“OK, so you’ve won a Nobel Peace Prize, reconciled the wave and the particle and discovered a new, clean energy source to rival oil / That don’t impress me much.” The woman is made of steel. I once read an article in a men’s magazine that listed reasons to look on the bright side after breaking up with your girlfriend. One of them was something like, “You no longer have to cower at Shania Twain concerts, convinced that a stadium of 50,000 women singing along to That Don’t Impress Me Much are talking about your penis.”)

Earrings make you look like you’ve made an effort, even when you haven’t showered. They also impress the girl behind the donut counter in Shoprite. I live to please her.

Earrings: Kind of anthropologically weird, but don't I look pretty? 9 out of 10.


Review: Cowardice

I’m too scared to read the comments on my last, antique post, from several decades ago.

I am also scared of spiders, the fucking horrible malicious eight-legged bastards. If some spiders had put nasty comments on my blog, that would be the worst thing.*

I was talking about one night stands with my friend, who writes operas. “Why would you dig a trench in the same place twice?” he asked, rhetorically. “Because you wanted a deeper, more profound trench,” I suggested. He explained that there's no time for that kind of behaviour because there's a war on.

*It would appear in the top five Worst Things (Trivial) and possibly even in the top twenty Worst Things (Actual).

Cowardice: Fine, I think, as long as there’s not a war on. 4 out of 10.