06 April 2011

50 centimeters

a russian stripper sitting next to me goes on and on about her imprisoned husband who she has finally seen after a month of separation.

“and you know what? he has grown so much! arnold schwarzenegger used to have a circumference of 54 centimeters here,” she says and swings her right hand around her left shoulder. “and now menelik has 50!”
“50 centimeters? where? are you serious?”
“yes! his body is so important to him. he says he has special protection too. he has these cuts in his arm, right here on the wrist, and they are there for his protection.”
“yeah the tribe he belongs to has those marks, and you've seen he also has cuts here on his face, like I have these here representing another tribe. like this we always, anywhere, recognize who is from which tribe,” adds a friend of mine and walks over to his bookshelf to pick up a file.

“hey, stripper girl, you know there is a tribe that mutilates the genitals of its male members? if west africans have been mutilated in the purposes of recognizing each others when meeting face to face, so to say, what do you think the mutilated genitals are supposed to communicate? and to who?”
“I guess they are to show those genitals to each others? I don't know?”
“yeah you wouldn't' know.”
“look, girls, it is not all just fun and games. look at this picture. this guy had gone to visit a mambo, a vodou priestess, and for whatever he asked for she had asked him to bring her the head of his daughter, as a sacrifice, you understand? this picture is taken by a friend of mine who was a journalist, long ago. she got killed for bringing stuff like this out from where it happened to a broader audience.”

being famous for stupid questions, I ask many, but each of them leads to the dead end of “you are not able to understand vodou, because you do not understand the cultural context it stems from.” this leaves me to imagine reasons myself, through a method of guessing motives. what would a mambo do, and why?

a guy comes to my vodou practice, willing to do anything to grant himself a life of wealth and luxury. I, the best mambo there is, know my role in the order of things is to help people become whatever they want to be. I understand the rules of human psyche in and out, but call these rules in my verbal output as the workings of spirits and such. I have to, otherwise these dupes would figure the trick out.

so, back to the timid greedy little guy who wants wealth and luxury. he needs something done to him that would make him completely oblivious to the effects of his actions giving him ruthlessness needed in the world of business, and a hands on experience when it comes to death, naturally. he needs to not to trust no one, but to keep his eyes open at all times because he has experienced himself how something vulnerable can be destroyed by the one who is thought to be the protector. he needs to be traumatized, so that he will spend the rest of his days compensating for it. I know,

“bring me the head of your youngest daughter.”

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