Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Mistaken Identity


Today I had to pay a visit to the local cop-shop to sort out some “admin” issues. I hate dealing with civil servants ANYWHERE, I had to mentally psyche myself up before leaving the house. I dragged my little brother along with me for company (there is safety in numbers, right).

I got to the joint, the first thing that struck me as strange was that every cop we walked past greeted my brother and he seemed to know them all…on a first name basis actually.

After throwing the youngster a WTF-look I was told that said-cops are regulars in the neighbourhood and the club scene patrolling the general area & making sure that everyone is behaving like upstanding citizens (read: they’re always lurking around the clubs, preying on the younger kids for cash and, if spoken to nicely, can turn a blind eye on underage drinking or make some trouble for the haterz in the club) – Only in Africa mate.

Everything was going well until I was told to get some receipt from some dodgy looking office round the back. My feel-good mood balked as soon I walked into the little dodgy office and sitting by the desk was Female Cop sneering back up at me, I oath, she looked at me with a face full of scorn like I had taken a bite out of the lunch she had sitting on her desk.

Wordlessly I handed her my papers so she could make out the receipt, but before she’d even looked at them she’d turned to her audience (2 other female cops and 1 male cop) and launched into an attack, in Shona, along the lines of, “Look at this Coloured chick here who has the audacity to interrupt my lunch, I’m going to make her wait.”

She then looked down at my paper, looked really confused then looked back at me and said, almost questioningly, “Oh, you are Black?!.”

After affirming that I was indeed Black (and proud) and throwing in some Shona just for added measure, lets just say, I got no more attitude. In fact, from that moment on, Female Cop was downright polite and almost freaking cordial!

It made me feel sorry for any non-Black people paying Female Cop a visit any time soon, that couldn’t be pretty. Everywhere else in Africa (and the world for that matter), its generally the other way round, you’re given a hard time because you are black. However, even in its reverse, it still didn’t sit too well even when it was me getting the preferential treatment. In an ideal world, a person getting a receipt, would just be a person getting a receipt innit.

Female Cop’s audience still looked confused and unconvinced by my affirmation and after getting my receipt I wasn’t about to stick around and map out my family tree to persuade them as to the authentication of my heritage.

I came to the conclusion years ago that those who know, know and everyone else who needs convincing is just wasting my time.

6 comments:

Ruby said...

hey girl! you've been tagged! details available on my blog:)

The Blonde Blogshell said...

TAG! You're it! Awww...Ruby beat me to it, but still! x

Anonymous said...

Vim, glad to see you advocating equality for all and a working society free of preferential treatment. That said, if that were so I may never have gotten my passport :)

Don't believe a word I write said...

I enjoyed reading this post dude. Very well written. I'd pay good money to watch the female cop being educated on your family tree! :-)

Vimbai said...

Rubes & Blondie: See post above for meme.

Anon: On the real, we wouldn't be able to get anything choppers if the system was legit, lol

DBAWIW: Thanks mate. Eish, i didnt have the time or energy to enter into such discussions!

anonimas said...

only in Zim - i recall a road-block where the Constable informed me to drive off after asking for "mari ye kokokora" without checking anything because they were only searching "mota dzemavet". i did not give him the mari for the record but i can believe you there