after 30

We are duplicating exam papers and are told that there is going to be a staff get-together tomorrow. Comes tomorrow and we are at this swanky place getting our dinner and drink on. Then we are supposed to come out in couples and introduce each other to the crowd, you know, all in the spirit of the event.

Side note: Some days earlier, I had appealed to the Academic Council-otherwise affectionately known as AC- to fix me up with a chick. Come on, what was I supposed to do?!  They asked why I was leaving and what it would take to make me stay. It’s always been said that anything and everything that we fail to deal with at the personal and departmental levels, to bring it to the AC. Bring it I did and they had said that they would take care of it no doubt . I suspect they had me (among other people) in mind when they put this thing together.

Now normally I get frisky even at the sight of beer. So it does not exactly ill behoove me when I start the introduction of a friend with “I could have introduced him better had I been sober”

No one laughs. People are looking down at their tables, ashamed for me: “siyayut eko dehina sew yemesil neber!?

That was 3/2 beers and a glass of wine later.

I talk about how he is a Bob Marley head (although his hairline is receding dangerously) and how he had lent me his PC speakers. He mentions my “alleged” Italian descent and how Adowa creeps me out; he finishes up by stating that I had turned thirty and am in an urgent need of a wife.

Another glass of wine, more introductions, speeches, comments and applause –we vacate the place.

A couple of guys suggest that we take the party to the next level. My adventurous self is in control and I get on board. But since I was not sure what the next level consisted in, I was a bit worried about things like hooker money and manscaping.

The four of us hit a place with a live band first. The band is a somber affair but we dance sitting down, remembering the songs that are being butchered on stage. Truth be spoken, the singers are not that bad. I even decide to bestow a gift of 10 birr (cheap!) upon this traditional singer when he decides to get off the stage and do some induction on the maximum of 10 guys that were in the place. Not only have I become adventurous this night, I am also innovative. I look for a decent place to put my gift on his person. Sticking it with saliva on his forehead is out. I put the money in the fold of his collar (are you afraid that people are going to call you cheap?)  It falls down and methinks the guy tramples on it after a cursory inspection.

It is loud up in here; we are straining to hear what the other person is saying. The paper labels  on the beer bottles come to our rescue –we communicate writing on those. It dawns on us-although it is still ninish- that if we are to continue sharing our thoughts, then we are going to have to drink more beer. More beer = additional paper to write on. We drink under the watchful gaze of Emperor Tewodros II. He is staring at us accusingly like we are his subjects whom he had ordered to carry the cannon up the mountain –and here we are eyecheleTin!  Chill out dude! All in good time! I question his decision to take his own life. He should have let himself be taken prisoner and when in London they wanted to display him as their latest conquest, he could have literally brought the house down, Samson style.

Next place we check out turns out to be a lounge bar kind of establishment where even the guy in the CD gets self-conscious when doing his thing.  We get in and get out.

Third place…

Before that, we discuss the wisdom of painting the town red, the town plagued as it is with students some of whom may be our own.  Relief comes in the knowledge that we have fixed their exam for the day after tomorrow. They are probably in their dorms, painting their handouts red instead. How about those who are not our students? Well, it is their city too, what the heck!

Third place is yeazmari bet. I was looking forward to hearing lewd lyrics, something in the lines of “cute guy with glasses” lyrics but they kept on talking about Abay, limat and… yuck! I would have been equally pissed if it was the other way round. That’s just me —Mr Opposite.  Noteworthy stuff from this episode: my tongue is in free flow; I am still riding the buzz which I caught three bottles ago. That’s the beauty of being a novice drinker, as one of my friends had remarked sometime ago: the buzz is not hard to come by; seasoned drinkers on the other hand have to toil and move a lot of bottles to get that same buzz. My shoulders are yet to loosen up; but that does not prevent me from doing the eskista with one of the female traditional dancers. The milliliters are going so fast that I am forced to wonder if someone from the crowd is guzzling my drink unseen.

The next morning I would receive comments that, in the foreseeable future, I would  be in the running to win the Sponge d’Or (The Golden Sponge)

Then to shooting some pool. My performance on the table could be summed in what one of the guys said: yaltegerezu ejoch

Here, the walls do not speak patriotism. Images of scantily clad ladies posing with the stick and what not. There is this one poster where a naked guy is about to shoot some balls into the huha of an equally naked lady lying on the beach, legs open. A couple of us surmise that another person is behind the guy, trying to do the same thing to him. You know, the hunter becomes the hunted.

Someone back me up on this: I have always thought that the purpose of those kinds of posters in pool houses is to enhance the performance of the players. Men are wont to make  shows of bravado when there are women around, two dimensional women regardless.

And out of nowhere, comes the impromptu list of some of the stupid things I have done in my life. Drum-rolls please! Off the top of my head:

  1. I once tried to impress a Protestant girl by blasting a new and very dirty rap song (no Lecrae)  from the  laptop. Maybe it was the right thing to do under the situation. I hear she sees a potential to be saved in everyone; and my potential must have been off the charts  😳
  2. Around  the time I started to frequent the internet room in school, I responded (phone calls) to a “You are the one millionth visitor to this site; you have won a prize”  I even told my moms and pops about the good news 😳
  3.  I crossed a busy street checking the other way for cars 😳
  4.  I gave one hundred birr to a hustler whose plan was to hustle me out of fifty birr. I even provided him with the place he supposedly knew me from 😳

Now, where was I?  Yes, the pool house. Gigi was doing her thing:

Night is getting deep. Last place we hit is a club with a shy DJ. At least that was my perception of him at the time. Perhaps I was comparing him with myself:  I was on the dance floor, getting down; I have loosened up all over; I am snatching imaginary trumpets from my friend. But the DJ, he is just fiddling with the CD player –why ain’t he dancing?!

Then come the dancing girls. For all the watts of sound coming out of the speakers, club falls silent, people hold their breaths, male and female alike. Their attire are swimming suits of an earlier and a bit more conservative era; not to say, midriffs and thighs were not in full display. The girl with a full behind and pleasant face goes first (was I thinking La vache qui rit?)  She keeps  pulling on her shorts. I take it to be a signal to put some money in there. I have watched enough movies to pride myself on my smattering of strip joint etiquette. But then I think the better of it: what if the bouncer (who, in all likelihood, doubles as her man) first tears my money in my face and then proceeds to tear me into pieces in full view of my friends: “here! put your friend together if you claim to really know him!”

Second girl  has got an Amy Winehouse in/on her. Everyone must have been thinking “she must be a real barracuda in the sack!” She goes on to try and bludgeon my friend over the head with her booty while doing her wall routine aka the spiderwoman. Esu ager selam new bilo gidgida teTegito eyeTeTa neber. She could have done some sweet damage had she been the other girl.

List of accessories on stage: a full length mirror which Amy seems drawn to. And a set of steel bars which remind one of the meat hangers that one would find at the butcher’s. My pious self interjects here: isn’t that essentially  what we are here to witness –women being treated and treating themselves as  pieces of meat?

The condominium of one of us is chosen as the place where we are going to crash  tonight. It is 2:00 AM. The biochemistry in us (ethanol inhibits gluconeogenesis, duh!) prevails and we have a hearty meal before going to bed. I could also attest to the fact that ethanol inhibits deep-seated inhibitions. I mean, I was dancing my ass off!

Next day someone goes as far as to suggest that we should be impartial, and we should continue the party in the sun, in the same vein we did it under the moon. Another exclaims that it had been a month since he had a decent night out, and that he needed this. Comparisons are made: 30 years vs. 30 days. Sure I have experienced bars and clubs before. But this was my first out-and-out night out. I guess another 😳 is in order.

But what was turning 30 like?

To be continued from the beginning.


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. getere
    Jul 08, 2012 @ 23:13:38

    I declare this post as one of my favorite! I couldn’t stop laughing 😀

    It’s true! What do employees who are single get when parents enjoy paternity leave? Nothing! Singles should be supported! Paid leaves to search for a partner, recovery period after a break-up, minamin.

    Ende lemindinew demo tederejtachihu yemitchefrut 😀

    1. yetabatu!
    2. eh?
    3. ebid
    4. abdehal?

    esu ager selam new bilo gidgida teTegito eyeTeTa neber 😀 wendimen. min tertiro. gud eko new.

    Oh, and you must see South Park more often. You will start to see things lightly and your days of dwelling on embarassing situations will be long gone!

    Enjoy your wild nights!

    (Menged gin eyayeh teshager)


    • tibebe
      Jul 12, 2012 @ 13:56:15

      thanks for liking this piece!

      and i could not have put it better. productivity has got everything to do with reproductivity.

      will do (about menged eyayu silemeshager :smile:)


  2. Elyas Mulu Kiros
    Jul 08, 2012 @ 15:51:23

    Happy belated b-day! 😀 …

    And this was one hilarious entry. Thanks for the laughter.

    Btw … chickochin metbes yihin yahil aschegari naw ende?? 😆 weyne wondmen …


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