Of Endless Talkers

April 12th, 2019 / Peter Petty
| As a banker, I end up leaving late because I have to stay behind to balance the books.

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I’m an angry person. 

That’s because I live in a world at a time where most of you choose, either deliberately or inadvertently to do the most ridiculous things. 

Take the example of Jimmy, a close friend of mine who also doubles as my housemate. We rent a flat together because well we are fresh out of school and our jobs pay us peanuts. Peanuts do not pay rent. Jimmy and I met in secondary school. He is a lanky fellow with a dishevelled look. He is a good friend but he is just one of those people who cannot shut up.

There are those days when you come home from work after a long day of being shouted at by impatient customers and your ever dissatisfied boss. Those days when you need a hot towel over you brow while your legs rest on a stool. You need those days when you can silently scroll through twitter and laugh at how ingenuously wicked Nigerians and Kenyans can be on that app.

So this one time I came back really late. I happen to be a bank teller at one of the country’s numerous banks and as a result I end up leaving late because I have to stay behind to balance the books. I was annoyed at the fact that it was a Friday night and while my mates kept asking whether I was up for a night of binge drinking, I politely declined. Reason being that I had to report to work by 9a.m the following day. So I sauntered into my flat feeling pissed off and not wanting to be disturbed.

The moment I shrank into the sofa, Jimmy walked into our small living room from the kitchen carrying a bowl of something I did not care to examine. I refused to recognise his presence and continued to scroll through my phone. Realising that he had been ignored and not having any of that, Jimmy eased himself into his side of the sofa and sneered. Upon recognising it was another ploy for my attention, I kept quiet.

“Man, I can’t believe it’s international break this weekend,” he started off. “What is the son of man expected to make of himself during this period?” he finally proposed for my attention.

“I don’t know, man” was my aloof response.

“But think about it, man, who has time to watch Iceland and Greece play?” said he as he used his fork to dig into what I had come to identify as noodles. At this point of my tirade, you’re probably thinking: Who uses “man” anymore? And you’re probably right. I learnt this expression from Jimmy!

“No one I guess. But hey, how about you read a book or something?” was my way of fuelling his drive to talk to me. I regret that I said that.

“Look at this one. Now books for what? Here’s a list of things I’d rather do than read books…” he passionately spoke. 

“Well, then you do those so many things that you would rather do during the international break,” I said as I struggled to lift myself from the sofa so that I could avoid any more confrontation.

He’s a great guy, this Jimmy fellow. Graduated top of his Civil Engineering class and currently works with some engineering firm. You think to yourself, this guy is so smart he probably should  

know better than to further conversation with a disinterested party. But he will prove you wrong, Jimmy. He will just go on and on. No matter how many short answers you give him, the man will keep on talking and that is so annoying.

I regret to report that Jimmy is not alone in this area. This country has so many of his kind. Why doesn’t Frank Walusimbi invite you guys to Tuwaye? Hmm? I see how some of his guests struggle to say anything? Why can’t he just hold auditions for Uganda’s best talker and then just have them on his show? That is a better way of doing things as opposed to harassing those of us who look at you in disgust while you force conversations on us.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with talking to people but I think we should be wise enough to read people before we begin yapping and chattering away. I love to listen to people’s conversations. I also enjoy contributing to those conversations whenever it is appropriate. I’m wise enough to know when someone is not in the mood to listen to whatever I have to say and I respect that. I never go on like some senseless twat.

Though my housemate’s blubbering episodes annoys me to the bone, I’m ashamed to point out that there are other things more annoying about Ugandans. I will spend the course of the coming weeks writing about these. I might even write a book about it!

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter: @PeterPetty_


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