“The South African nation is today filled with pride and joy,” decreed presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj on Tuesday.
This was astounding news. The nation is usually filled with anger, resentment, remorse, guilt and wine.
What momentous event could have turned us, overnight, from a country of indolent, pilfering misanthropists into a country of back-slapping happy campers bubbling over with good cheer and self-love?
Had President Zuma done the right thing and fired his cabinet on the grounds of gross incompetence?
Had Winnie attended a session of parliament?
Had Bafana Bafana won a game?
No, nothing so implausible.
Instead, the nation was officially beside itself because a kid from Durban won a swimming race in London. I suppose when you’re coming off such a low base, it doesn’t take much to reach patriotic orgasm.
Anyway, I don’t believe Chad le Clos is the fastest in the world in the 200m butterfly. There are tribesmen deep in the Amazon who can do it in under twenty seconds. However, their times do drop off when the piranha fish head upriver to spawn.
So much for Tuesday. Then, on Wednesday, I pulled a muscle in my back while lying on the couch watching the Olympics. It happened while lunging for a fresh six-pack that Brenda had cruelly moved just beyond my reach. This shows the importance of stretching exercises for spectators.
I could have been a contender.
Look at le Clos. His father said he had been swimming since he was in nappies. My father also threw me into the pool when I was in nappies. Then he went to the kaya to check on his latest batch of home-brew and forgot all about me. By the time my mother came home from the casino, nine hours later, I was doing the 100m crawl in just under 45 minutes. She made my father fill in the pool and I was never allowed near water again.
Watching the Olympics, I was constantly amazed at what the human body is capable of. At one point, even with a sprained rhomboideus, I managed to go from a prostrate position to a conventional sitting position while simultaneously opening a beer, changing channels and wedging my big toe into Julius Seizure’s bottom to avoid further contamination of the atmosphere.
I think these games are overrated. There are several events in which I could easily win a medal. Skeet shooting is one. Most white South Africans of a certain age are excellent skeet shooters, although in those days we didn’t call them skeets – we called them terrorists.
I remember being on the border and shooting someone in the back from a distance of two kilometres. It turned out to be our radio operator, but still. When it comes to marksmanship, it’s important to give credit where it is due.
Common sense says it is easier to win a medal in a team sport, like hockey or genocide, because you can rely on your mates to do all the hard work. Take curling, for example. Right away, I would commandeer the comb and let my more talented colleagues wield the tongs and hairspray.
There was a time I felt myself drawn to archery, but then I watched Robin Hood – Men In Tights and realised this so-called sport had the potential to turn ordinary decent folk into dangerous homosexuals.
It’s a pity Olympic organisers don’t offer an alternative for athletes from the developing world, using human targets and pangas instead of bows and arrows. We’d get gold in that, for sure.
As for beach volleyball. Really? The way these women carry on after winning a point, why not just make lesbianism an Olympic sport?
Men play it, too. They use words like “spike” and “jungle ball” and “underhand serve” which is quite obviously code for activities of a deviant nature. And why not? After all, the Greeks started this business.
I think I would be good at judo. Most married men who haven’t yet been emasculated are experts in the art of pushing and slapping. My friend Ted says it was originally an elitist money-making sport started by Zionists who called it Jew Dough. I called him a filthy anti-Semite and beat him soundly with a leg of pork, which we later cooked and ate with relish and gusto.
As for that ridiculous business with the swords. A South African’s idea of fencing is to make a tidy profit from selling stolen goods. It makes far more sense than attempting to prod a stranger with a pointy stick. If you’re going to have a sword fight, then, for god’s sake, do it to the death.
I could also win a medal in dressage. It’s not even as if you have to be fit. All you have to do is sit on your horse while it goes through its dance routine, and maybe have a word with it if it gets over-excited and tries something from Michael Jackson’s repertoire. It’s best not to let your horse watch programmes like Strictly Come Dancing.
Cycling and rowing should only be Olympic sports once all modes of transport are included. Let’s see events where people have to catch buses and run for taxis.
Badminton is trapped in a mire of match-fixing, drugs and human trafficking and is clearly the sport of the devil. And it’s no good watching gymnastics to cleanse your soul, either. I tried, but halfway through the women’s floor exercise I came over all Humbert Humbert-like and had to switch to the women’s boxing. Rather a misogynist than a paedophile, I always say.
Should the ANC ever decide to stage its own games, here are a few categories they might want to consider: Running for office, rigging the ballot, deploying the cadre, looting the treasury, fleecing the taxpayer, riding the gravy train, playing the race card, watching the clock, hunting for witches, jumping the queue, pulling the wool, loading the dice, shooting the breeze, stalling for time, spinning the truth, spanking the monkey, palming the tender, fiddling the expenses, diving for cover, dropping the ball and passing the buck.