I have realized that sometimes, I order my thoughts best during random conversations with people. One such conversation took place a few days ago from a guy I vaguely know as a regular contributor to my weekly column in the Sunday News. We don’t converse often and he just stumbled into me on Google-chat. He was in the mood to pick my brain and the conversation went like this:
7:08AM fuzaneb: hi D, always been a breath of fresh air when it comes to your outlook on life, but ha, sometimes i find yu kinda too radical, militant and plain bullish!
7:09 AM me: I am only that way just to demonstrate that I am dead serious about some issues and once that message gets across…I relax and chill
7:11 AM fuzaneb: which makes a politician of sorts out of you?
7:16 AM me: lol, I wouldn’t say that
7:20 AM fuzaneb: ha ha ha, there is a coward in you too – just pulling your leg. i often see a Margaret Dongo in yu though – remember her? out of interest, does the word loyalty exist in yo vocab?
7:21 AM me: loyalty?
7:21 AM fuzaneb: yep loyalty, control, conformity,subordination …. that kinda stuff
7:21 AM me: oh.
7:22 AM I would not put loyalty in the same bracket as subordination
7:23 AM Loyalty, like submission is an act of the will….it cannot be forced on someone
7:25 AM fuzaneb: there yu go nw D, raving philosophical – i can tell yu already activating yo defences – relax bo
7:25 AM me: Submission is voluntary, subordination is not
you just flicked a switch in my head, lol
7:25 AM fuzaneb: ok, how about control?
(5 minutes later)
7:31 AM me: what about it?
7:32 AM fuzaneb: your thoughts on it, being the damsel who insist on 152.78% freedom?
7:34 AM me: It depends on what you mean by control exactly. Do you mean power relations in relationships? Control over resources or control over persons?
7:35 AM me: Or control over self?
7:35 AM me: To me freedom is control over self….whether the self is packaged in a male body or a female one….as long as that person can claim to have control over them-selves – they are free
7:36 AM fuzaneb: wow, love the diversity and depth of your perspective. I mean it in the parochial sense of power dynamicss in relationships
7:37 AM me: you were not particularly specific….lol
power dynamics in relationships are inevitable but the manner in which they manifest is often what I may take issue with
If they manifest as physical or emotional abuse, economic deprivation or any other negative and harmful violation of another person’s dignity – I resent those manifestations of control
7:39 AM fuzaneb: so, if yu cant give up at least partial control over self, how do yu build bridges with the other person. aint compromise imperative there?
7:43 AM me: Of course you can give up “at least partial control over self” (as you put it) because if you own your self, you get to do with yourself as you please….including giving yourself – whole or half – to another
7:44 AM fuzaneb: WOW, I LOVE THAT – think this enigma packaged as Delta is getting more and more unravelled in a positive way. have always held this stereotype of a completely intransigent, riotous Delta, if yu get ma point
(9 minutes later)
7:53 AM fuzaneb: nice chatting with yu D, may yo star continue to shine hey. remember to start looking outside the window too phela (males) rather than always looking at yo mirror (women). that for me should widen and balance your perspectives and debunk a number of unwitting stereotypes and myths about us
7:54 AM me: thanks…sorry I am multi-tasking
fuzaneb: fine then, catch yu some other tym – wat’s on the menu this Sunday?
7:56 AM me: Havent decided yet….something on marriage though
7:56 AM fuzaneb: look forward to that, bye
And I wonder; what is your take on freedom? What does it mean to be free? What does control mean to you and how should loyalty be defined, expressed or manifested? This conversation got my thoughts churning….now I ask your indulgence – what are YOUR thoughts on these things? (Now I know most of you ABSOLUTELY hate leaving comments, and I respect that choice; I just hope this one time you’ll make an exception). Could you please have this conversation with me?