Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Jackie Selebi & The Mafia Link

I just wanted a really important title to this post.
I actually don't have anything to say about Jackie or any Mafia links.

What I do want to know is why we don't have any cool South African/ local Mafia names?
Names like Jimmy Two-Toes; or Tommy The Shooter; or Vinny The Kid.
Instead we're stuck with characters like Glen Agliotti, Clinton Nassif, Schabir Shaik and Jackie Selebi.
So uncool.

Makes me want to start my own Mafia with some of my homeboys from back in the day.
Guys like Two-Tone Moodley, who was more purple than he was dark-skinned.
Or Sugarcane-Bobby. I thought they called him that because his folks worked the sugarcane fields in Tongaat Turns out they called him Sugarcane because he liked his cane with 2 blocks of ice in a tumbler every Friday night.
Then there was Moeghamat "Dash" Abrahams. He could smell a cop 2 blocks away with a downwind and a stuffy nose. Of course once he got a whiff, he ran like the devil. Hence, Dash. Most times he ran without having done anything wrong. He just ran. Smell a cop, and run. Growing up, I remember hanging out with these characters because it was like a free circus, and we ended up running a lot. If Dash ran, we all ran. Four blocks later when Fat Faizel was having his weekly heart-attack and couldn't keep up anymore, we'd stop and ask Dash why we were running. Of course he never knew.

I grew up with my gran and she frowned on nicknames. She said they had a way of sticking to you long after you outgrew them.
I never really knew what she meant until I got on a bus one day in my 2nd year of college, and found myself face-to-face with Vishnu "Tubby" Patel. Of course the first thing out of my mouth was "Heeeey Tubby, long time no see."
My mouth was evidently on the fast lane of a four-lane highway.
My brain however, was still parked in my garage.

"Tubby" was about 6ft2, with more muscle and neck than a bull in heat.
Obviously he'd lost all that puppy fat, and then some.
He towered over me, and I got a distinct whiff of vanilla power-smoothie and maybe some fish curry.
Needless to say, the name "Tubby" was no longer appropriate.
His girlfriend however, looked like she could squeeze right into the name perfectly.

All this writing about nicknames brings me to a few that I've been called growing up.
The most memorable being Lewis.
I used to be able to run like the devil back in school.
Remember the episodes with Dash? That may have had something to do with it.
Anyways, they called me Lewis because of the famous sprinter Carl Lewis.
Fareed Kaloo. Kaloo. Kaloowis. Carl Lewis. Lewis.
And thats how you get a nickname.

Funny thing is, anybody from back in the day who see's me now and calls me Lewis must either be high on crack or blind.
I'm more closely related to Fat Albert. Not that i'm fat. I'm just more meaty than your average long-distance runner; and by average i'm referring to guys like Barry Ronge and Luciano Pavarotti.
Ok so maybe i'm exaggerating, but I like the body I have :)
Some day i'll write more about it.