It has been a long time since I last posted a blog article, and I am ashamed of myself.
You see, I had made a commitment to myself that I will post about two articles on WordPress every single week, and months have gone by since I have even shared a quote, and it’s a damn shame, because a man is only as good as his word.
Yes I have failed to keep my word, but please hear my plea, because I believe I really have some valid reasons for my “incompetence”.
First of all, things ain’t always that black and white, and your whole life can be turned upside down in just a moment. The last thing I remember is me writing my book peacefully and hoping to publish it soon and buy a stroller for my baby, and then the next moment I had no baby, or book, money, friends and not even a place to stay, and all that in just a blink of an eye.
I then took a job at retail trying to pick up the pieces, and before I knew it, I had went from selling expensive ladies perfumes and underwear to packing tin fish at Walmart and feeling like a damn idiot, and thinking to myself, “at least at my first job I interacted with beautiful ladies”.
I’m a very passionate author, so as much as I know how much of a waste it is for me to be pushing trolleys, packing tills and stock whilst I could have been just writing, I also know I just have to do it, it’s either that or go homeless boy.
And I cross my typist fingers that soon enough someone will spot my potential as I’m standing shamefully behind a trolley. Amen.
And I promise to check in on WordPress whenever I get a chance.
I work at a shopping mall, so I am exposed to all types of people. I work in a women’s shop specifically, so I am exposed to all types of women, beautiful women of all kinds and so I’ve been mad nuts about my job so far, well, until today.
It has been all sunshine and rainbows, until today. There was a bomb scare at the mall; I recall packing Gucci perfumes peacefully when a pile of people ran in the store full of panic, at first I thought they were probably being chased by robbers raiding the mall, and I figured I had nothing to worry about because I had nothing but a rewards card and a R30 in my pocket. But, as they ran around like headless chickens screaming “Bomb” “Bomb” I realize my R30 is nothing as compared to what I’m about to lose. Funny I still stood there for a moment, figured this must be a joke of some sort, but facial expressions around the store suggested otherwise, so my mind pictured Man On Fire by Denzel Washington, the infamous 9/11 bombing of the towers in the States, and most recently, the church collapse in Nigeria that killed more than 80 South Africans, and then after that I can’t really say where the perfumes or the people that were before me disappeared to, because all I remember is me looking back at the shopping mall from the outside and seeing all the other staff from other shops and shoppers that were running towards me, and there I was thinking to myself “Life is short”.
If I had died today I would have never witnessed my niece grow, make my mother proud nor visit Tokyo, life is really that short.
Still on that thought, I am even scared to go back to work tomorrow, what if the terrorist is mad as f*ck right now that his mission got ruined and he’ll return tomorrow to finish the job? Nope, I rather stay home. Plus, my manager will inquire about the Gucci stock that was in my possession, how will I account?
ME: Today I want to talk about materialism.
LUCY: Okay, what about it?
ME: I really do not have much, but as soon as my circumstances change, I really want to own skyscrapers for the heck of it, wear Tom Ford suits and smell of Gucci perfumes. And I often worry that it makes me a shallow person.
LUCY: Why would it?
ME: (looks down) Because the society perceives materialistic people to be.
LUCY: (looks up) The society looks down on people who let their materialistic possessions define them.
ME: (rolling eyes) But, what does that even mean?
LUCY: It means that a Gucci perfume remains just that, a Gucci perfume. It doesn’t make you any better anyhow than the person with a much cheaper one, if any at all. The thing about materials is, they serve a purpose, to make life easier or luxurious whatsoever, and as long as you acquire them for that use only, you’re still on the right track I guess, but the moment you use them to feel superior and more entitled to attention and respect than other people, then you’re getting derailed.
ME: (smiling) So there is nothing wrong with being materialistic then?
LUCY: Yes, only if you can afford that lifestyle. The problem is the price most people often pay for it, they often acquire it at the expense of other people, and that is not right.
ME: So rich people are evil?
LUCY: Being evil or not has nothing to do with your financial status, it’s in your heart. The thing about evilness is it is just an ill thought, whether exercised or otherwise.
ME: So, rich people do not have a responsibility towards the poor?
LUCY: They do, in the every same way the poor have the same responsibility towards each other, most importantly, towards themselves. Help another person in any and every way you can when you can, but always remember, their insolvency can only be truly averted by them and no one else, not even the “rich” (air quotations).
ME: Thank you so much Lucy (rubbing hands in excitement), but I feel like we’re drifting away from the topic now. So let me ask this once again, there is anything wrong with wanting to be rich?
LUCY: No, as much as there is nothing wrong with not wanting to be rich as well.
ME: So, it doesn’t make one shallow then?
LUCY: No it doesn’t, as much as being covered in rags would not make the next man any “deeper” than you, or me for that matter.
ME: So, loving materialistic possessions is okay then?
LUCY: (smiles) As long as you still love people more.
ME: Damn, okay, this is getting “deep” (imitates Lucy’s famous air quotations)……….. (thinks for a moment) So tell me, does it really mean…………………………………
ME: (sits up straight) Okay, I guess there’s no other way to ask you this, are you God?
LUCY: (chuckles) No, I’d say “Hell No” but given today’s topic, I rather not.
Me: So, how do you know for sure that you are not God?
LUCY: (smiles) Because if I were really God, I wouldn’t even have to think about it. I am only human, only a mere reflection of him, like you are.
ME: So he is a He?
LUCY: For argument sake, let’s say He is. I do not know God’s gender, race, and all the other average questions you may ask, but in my opinion, petty things as race and gender really do not matter to God, He is everything, all at once.
ME: Because we’re all made in his reflection?
LUCY: Yes Ubuntu (nodding), because of that.
ME: But, our religions are so different. Why is that?
LUCY: (smiling again) Religions are not God, but a mere interpretation of him. The reason we have so many different religions is, many people interpret “him” in many different ways.
ME: So, which ones are right and which ones aren’t?
LUCY: Honestly, it’s almost impossible to say. Let me tell you this, God is interpreted differently by different people because He reveals himself differently to different people. He came to Moses as a burning tree, and he came in a very different way to Paul.
ME: I get you now, I guess our faith is much weaker than Moses’s, because he never reveals himself to us.
LUCY: That is another mistake we make. We think that when he reveals himself it will be through extraordinary means or a burning tree, and not understand that it might have been through a homeless person that might have smiled at you today.
ME: (excited) Or maybe he reveals himself through my pastor.
LUCY: (with a straight face) Yes, maybe through him as well, as long as you still remember that your pastor is not more of his child than you are, in God’s eyes we are all equal.
ME: Are you also a Christian?
LUCY: I have only used Christianity because of your familiarity with it, but I am hoping you’ll apply these concepts on a much broader scale.
ME: (almost disappointed) Oh, okay. I’m still curious as to which religion is the best.
LUCY: There is no best. God doesn’t have a best side, all his sides are equally best.
ME: (more confused) I think you have lost me there, so do you mean that…………….
ME: So, can anyone really tell one what to do?
LUCY: Yes, only if they allow them to.
ME: (confused) But, how?
LUCY: (smiling) We allow everything that happens to us, no matter how unfortunate it may be, once you give signals that it is okay to tell you what to do, every other new person that comes into your life will at some point attempt to control you in one way or another.
ME: (sighs)………………. (thinks for a moment) So……….. (hesitantly) what is the right thing to do?
LUCY: I don’t know (spreads arms), you tell me.
ME: (Irritated) What is that supposed to mean?
LUCY: Its means no one can really know what’s right for you but you. We are all different, so are our circumstances, ideas and ultimately, our way of thinking. With that said, we can’t really share identical views on these things.
ME: So how do I know those of my own?
LUCY: Really now? Look within yourself Mr., everything lies there. Tell you what, the ideas of your friends, parents, even your preacher’s are not always right for you, go with what your instincts tell you to do, your intuition is your guardian angel my friend. Do what is right for you, and not what you think will be “viewed” (air quotations) as right by your peers.
Me: (more confused than ever) You know what, today I’m really not getting you. You know, I was thinking that………………..