Have you heard the one about the father and mother walking happily across the lush lawns of the public leisure area? Of course you have not. It has never been told. Do you know why?
Because parenthood, people, is not a walk in the park. Membadat, as the youths have taught me to say.
My sons, Chandler Bazanye and his elder brother Frasier Bazanye, have been turning my life into an agonised crawl through the Old Taxi Park if anything for the past ten years. That is from the age at which they learned the final skill necessary in torturing me. They learned how to walk first, then how to talk, then how to plot together against me and once the third piece was in place, I was done.
Frasier: Father of ours, we have an announcement to make to you. Not really an announcement, more of a point of information that you should take into deep consideration. Something you should be made aware of at an early stage so that it does not cause a crisis if revealed too close to the moment of final…
Chandler: Dad, Fraze and I are not going to university.
Baz: Chandler, my youngest son. To you was given the gift of brevity. Frasier, my first born, upon you was thrust the bird dropping of extreme verbosity that never arrives at the point.
Chandler: I wonder where he gets it from.
Baz: I wonder where you get your sarcasm from, Chandler.
Chandler: From mum. Note the brief answer. To the point.
Baz: To the point then. Since we have arrived at it, let us explore the premises. It is an unwillingness to pursue tertiary education. Hmmm. What brings us to this? What, if any, are the reasons for us to believe this?
Frasier: Application of the skills university is supposed to teach us, ironically. Application of logic, reason and an analytical prespective on things.
Chandler: It sometimes sounds as if this dude gets paid per word.
Baz: I know, right? That’s why I never call him on the phone. He will just finish all my airtime using 34 percent of the English vocabulary to say “Yes, hello?”
Chandler: Funny thing is, the girls at school seem to love it.
Baz: There are girls at your school? I thought MOntego Bay SSS was single sex.
Frasier: Oh, it’s plenty sex now, papaman. Plenty to go around.
Baz: What are you talking about? Don’t tell me you are already sexually active! You are mere teenagers!
Frasier: It was simple commercial prudence, see. Our headmaster could not continue, as he had been, denying the girl child the opportunity of an education. Rather, he could not continue denying the girl child the opportunity to pay school fees for him.
Chandler:He could get more money by letting babes in, so in they came. Our classmates are now the honeys. Yeah!
Baz: HOney is off limits until you are of legal mature age! Not to be sold to minors. I am not going to bail you out of jail for defilement.
Frasier: I don’t think it counts if we are both minors…
Baz: It does to me, and to the girl’s parents. We will both kill you. You know it does not count as homicide if you are the father?
Chandler: There was a point we were discussing before we got sidetracked. We are not going to university, dad. We have decided.
Frasier: Yes. Let’s save you the money and ourselves the bother. We have seen that all they do in university is riot and get teargassed all year round. So we are cutting out early. No thank you.
Baz: It is a moral tragedy. These days all university students do is riot, and make sex tapes…
Frasier: What? So I want to go to Makerere to do a course in film studies.
Chandler: I think I will study cinematography.