|Gossip: World’s heavy burden|
|Saturday, 04 August 2012 00:00|
An acrobatic kick landed on her jaw before she was seized by the hand and dragged by the same limb into a stormwater drain. All manner of missiles, from stones to beer bottles, were rained on her, prompting those nearby to sweep to the defenceless soul’s rescue.
Were it not for men who rushed to restrain the assailants, more harm could have been inflicted.
“Regai ndimudzidzise. Ajairira munhu uyu mhani,” one of the attackers said while being restrained.
“Ndirikuda kumugadzirira size yakanaka. How could she do that to me? Why did she tell my husband nonsense?” the woman bellowed with tears pouring from her bloodshot eyes.
So determined was the woman and her peers to send Jacqueline to her creator that it took the restrainers close to half an hour to calm the situation.
“He-he-he-de. Uuuri. Wemakuhwa asotwa! Atambwa yakashisha! Atsikiswa munzwa! Adirwa bvuche! Aitwa yakavheleleka,” children who had witnessed the real-life drama laughed as they escorted Jacky, who was burying her face in her hands in shame, home.
Women in the whole area formed small groups to discuss the matter as others who did not venture out of their yards could be seen treating their eyes to the spectacles under the cover of their security walls.
And the incident was to become the tale of the neighbourhood for the whole month.
Yakange yangove iyo nyaya kuyedze, ridoke, rinyure.
Such, gentle reader, is the embarrassment rumour mongers have to contend with in the ghetto.
They are always on the run hiding from so and so, but on unlucky days they are punched in the face or have their clothes torn into shreds during the assaults.
But that will not stop them from gossiping.
There is something about talking about someone’s trials and tribulations that seems to make their world go round. And it’s as if these gossipers have their own secret society.
Whenever they approach you with pieces of their juicy tales, they all start by saying: “Did you hear this?”, “Have you heard?”, “Ko wambonzwei?”, “Latest padunhu nhai vasahwira” or simply “Nezuro ndakazonzwa bhomba renyaya.”
“Ziana,” “Manews”, “Zimwaya”, “Wemanyepo,” and murevi wenhema are names that are commonly used in reference to people who peddle lies in the communities in which we live.
Gentle reader, gossipers have no rest.
They go overdrive each time they meet someone they believe they can glean information about a rival from. These rumour peddlers can even give you a shoulder to cry on in times of whenever calamity strikes.
But wait until that is over and you will start hearing detailed accounts of what transpired from third parties with direct quotes.
To quote Alick Macheso’s lyrics, “dzimwe dzenyaya munotokurukura, kusaziva kuti uri kuzvitengesa.”
Gossipers are just as wicked as the ugliest action the devil can swing into.
As I commit pen to paper gentle reader, there are thousands out there who are in despicable problems owing to the work of gossipers.
Some have been sent packing from their matrimonial homes after the news of their past lives was presented as new before it got into the ears of their husbands.
Jobs, friendships and contacts have been lost owing to the work of gossipers.
“Mukuwasha muri munhu anerudo chaizvo. Kungoti wamunorupa ndiye akaoma. Mukadzi kushinga kuita zvikomba nekushingwa kwamunoita kuti mhuri irarame uku?” you hear gossipers telling married men in exchange for beer at drinking places dotted around the city of Harare.
The issue is not confined to women.
Some men are also dangerous when it comes to peddling falsehoods. They can even buy you beer the whole day while telling you unfounded stories of your wife’s dealings with other men.
During this time, some drunkards are even hired to add weight to the claims.
“Ah, Ah waita sei mwana wamai? Nyaya iyoyo yawanzwa ndiyoyo. Haichinje. Takatozviona zvichiitika neangu maziso aya,” you will be told straight in the face.
Guhwa uri mwana waaniko iwe?
Unoparadza misha yevanhu,
Dai waive muonde,
Shiri hadzaikudya iwe,
Dai waive mvura,
Vanhu vaidzipwa pakunwa,
Guhwa uri mhunzapunza, sang the late wordsmith Marshall Munhumumwe and the Four Brothers.
True to the singer’s observation, gossipers can make an otherwise good life unbearable. No one is, however inert, to gossiping.
Almost everywhere, people enjoy taking digs at each other or bringing into the pubic foray the hidden side of someone. Your biological father and mother can be dangerous if they do not accept your choice for a wife.
“Of all the great mistakes you have made, we never thought you would sink this low. The woman you married son is a real problem.
“She has itchy feet and the moment you leave for work she will be all over the show.
“She is a woman about town and the best decision you can make is to let her go. Kungoti hatingakutsvagire mukadzi,” I heard a certain guy being told by his father straight in the eye.
Gossipers can also make your life at the workplace unbearable. Each time they see you around a woman, they will start telling them to beware of the danger of being raped or of having money stolen from them.
If they see you in the boss’ office, he’s immediately warned: “Mudhara munhu iyeye haabvi kun’anga. Be careful he might sprinkle his muti in your office. He is not as good as the smile he wears on his face suggests.”
At church, gossipers are not to be outdone.
Instead of worshipping Yahweh, they will be busy assessing whether or not your dressing is not provocative as to sway the mind of the elders. At times the choirmaster’s wife is fed with wrong information by people worried of your fashion consciousness.
If a deacon buys a car, he is sometimes accused of pinching some from the offerings plates.
“Munoti mari yakawanda kudaro akaiwanepi. Mwari anokomborera zvake asi apa mari yakabiwa apa,” you will hear long-mouthed women saying on their way from church. An unmarried woman is worse than rotten meat in some religious circles.
The moment a single woman starts going to church, all married women desperate to preserve their marriages will start monitoring her to ensure she does not sit near their spouses. Sometimes she is ridiculed in a way that shows gossip have become part and parcel of our places of worship.
Gossipers miss no funeral.
They are always there to see the type of coffin, food and mourners.
Their ears will also be on the ground for any information that may be marketable in their world.
A gossiper is everywhere gentle reader and he/she has to be minded to ensure relations remain intact even in his absence.