I am not normal. Do not try to convince me otherwise, really don’t. I know I am not, I’ve always known.
I knew back in Primary 1 when my mum returned from the market without the mangoes she promised. She cut her hand while shredding vegetables that evening.
I knew when my Primary 4 teacher fell and broke her arm hours after flogging me. It wasn’t her fault … really, it was James’ fault. James was the class captain and he wrote my name in the list of noise makers. He shouldn’t have. I was a quiet child, deathly quiet, hardly ever speaking. So when Aunty flogged me that afternoon, I was angry. I was so angry that I wished she’d just fall and break her arm, that way she’d never flog me again. So when she fell off the veranda just before closing bell and broke her arm, I knew I was responsible.
The class captain – James – he went home in one piece. I did nothing to him. But he came to school the next day wearing a slight limp which got worse each day. In a month’s time, James had to walk with a cane. And by the time we resumed for a new term, he was in a wheel chair.
I got further proof when in my JSS 1, the Niger House Captain, Senior Ruth made me mop the stairs, the entire dirty four flights. It was a Saturday morning, a few minutes to the almighty Saturday House inspection and I wasn’t feeling too well. I was running to the bushes behind the hostel to relieve myself, but I never got there. I ended up depositing my borrowed breakfast of corn flakes and milk on the stairs. Amaka, my bunkie, wanted to help me clean up, I was really ill. But Senior Ruth, with all the wickedness in her heart, insisted I clean it myself, not just the few steps I vomited on but the entire four flights. On Sunday morning, the stairs were stained red with her blood. She slipped and rolled down the stairs, all the way down the entire four flights. She fractured a knee. Very badly. 6 months down the line, her crutches were almost always missing.
In my final year, my supervisor, an ugly, shapeless, balding, pot-bellied excuse of a man insulted me during a departmental meeting. He called me a stupid, no-good bimbo with more boobs than brain. That is not true. He sneered that I was so dumb I couldn’t even pronounce my own name. Also not true. I had done nothing to deserve his taunts, it is not a crime to be quiet. I was so embarrassed that I cried in front of the entire faculty.
On his way home that evening, three of his car tires exploded. Nobody could explain it but he survived the ensuing wreckage unscathed. For days we didn’t see him, rumor said he was in shock. When he returned, he became the nicest lecturer around. I got an A in my project work and every other course he handled that semester.
Right now, I do not feel normal. My boss, a cruel man with deep-set eyes (people say he battered his eyes, heart and height for wealth), called me a dumb ass. Not only that, he berated me in front of the entire management board, for wearing a cream blouse instead of an ivory colored one to the presentation. I could hear them snickering as I turned tail and ran. Now I’m just here in my cubicle, trying to compose myself – in my cream blouse.
I don’t want to wish him evil … Lord help me, I don’t. But I just wish the bastard would fall off his office on the 33rd floor and …
*glass shattering* *a long rapidly fading yell* *a thud* *screams* *commotion*
I guess it’s time to go home.
By Hope Eboh
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