Saturday, August 15, 2015

Everyday Is A Con

There are things that give us sleepless nights. I don’t know about yours but on occasion, I have woken up in a cold sweat and petrified that I was clad in nothing but a skimpy scrotum hugging thong and writhing on stage at Nakivubo Stadium as one of Desire Luzinda’s backup dancers or, that I was driving down Kampala Road in a convertible Mercedes blaring out Selina Gomez music on the pimped up car stereo.

Most times I am terrified that I will fall for a con that will have me beating my head against the Idiot’s Wall. The last time I nearly fell for a con was when I got a call from somebody asking if I could meet his agent and buy a mechanical gadget off him. We would then sell it on to a ‘gullible’ German investor at three times the price.

I didn’t fall for it but I know Miki did. Since then, I am always on guard when calls from people I don’t know spring up out of the blue and who are pedalling a deal that’s obviously a con.

Reading the UK papers this week, one story was way off the radar that if I had the resources, I would have tracked down the victims and had them flogged in Wembley Stadium while a baying crowd shouts out – “Idiots, idiots, idiots!”

Alican Reilly is still a kid – if indeed as a 21-year-old, he’s still classed as a kid. Reilly has been banned from all buses and trains in London for his con – that of satisfying his foot fetish. He met his victims – three girls on the bus and conned them into removing their shoes. He didn’t stop there. He started smelling the insides of the shoes and wait for it, wait for it – also rubbing his groin.

It was only when he started moaning in a lustful and sexual way that the victims became suspicious and reported the incident to police.

I think there is a need to put this into a Ugandan perspective for it to properly digest – don’t you think? Take a woman who boards a taxi at Banda stage on Jinja road. As the taxi trudges on, Man sitting next to her asks her to remove her shoes.

Despite having gone to a fine school - Gayaza and scored an upper second from Makerere University, she doesn’t ask why. She doesn’t even slap or hurl a couple of tumbavu’s at him. But she complied because like the victims in the UK said: “It sounded official, like he was a ticket inspector or undercover cop.” Hmm!

Strike a pause there. When exactly did the alarm bells start ringing? Should it not have sounded the moment he sat down next to them?  I guess, but it didn’t. Not even when he asked them take off their shoes or he started smelling the insides of the shoes and it was not when he started rubbing his groin. It was only when he started making ‘lustful moans’ that they figured something was not right. 

Another hmm!

I have tried to be sympathetic to the victims but I really can’t - even if the incident had happened in the heart of Vatican City with that man in a big white hat and robes looking on from his balcony.

You would have thought that common sense would have kicked – not so? Maybe not, because like Waitress in Kitintale once told me when I asked if she had any intention of opening my beer, her response was precise: “But you only asked for a beer – you didn’t tell me to open it.” At least I hurled a tumbavu – even though it was a quiet one because she was built like Floyd Mayweather’s sister.



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