The Citizen (KZN)

No joke finding the right job

- Cliff Buchler

There was a time in my confused post pubescent life when I tried my hand at preaching. Not having a business brain like Ray McCauley – and congregant­s responding to my sermonisin­g with bored expression­s and audible yawns, I realised I had lost my way to Damascus Road.

The crunch came when an old geezer shook my hand at the vestibule, thanking me. For what? “For allowing me to catch forty winks without my wife interferin­g.”

I even interspers­ed sermons with jokes. Like: a pastor joins a Rotary club and the members decided to have some fun with him. Under his name badge they printed hog caller as his occupation. Everyone made a big fanfare as the badge was presented.

The pastor responded: “I usually am called the shepherd of the sheep, but I guess you know your people better than I do.”

It was met with deep frowns. Laughing out loud at my own joke from a pulpit could not have been an inspiring sight.

Maybe politics was my forte. I joined the local branch of an opposition party, even later becoming its chairman. During a general election we took to the streets, going door to door. After being bitten twice by boerboels, pummelled down stairs by bigboep men wearing tatty vests and showing off tattoos of snakes and dragons, and being sworn at, as if we were Jehovah’s Witnesses, I decided to pack it in. Ironically, that year our candidate wiped the floor with the incumbent. So maybe I should have persevered to ultimately become a parliament­arian with a fat salary for doing zilch.

But then again, witnessing the goings-on of the present bunch, I can’t see myself having lasted.

Imagine being Gwede Mantashe, whose whole life is spent protecting a useless president. Or Baleka Mbete who has to control the antics of rowdy, undiscipli­ned mobsters. Or, an intelligen­t and gracious Naledi Pandor, having to listen to incompeten­t fellow ministers sprouting utter garbage.

How a man of Pravin Gordhan’s stature lasted so long among nincompoop­s is unfathomab­le.

Fortunatel­y, I took the easy way out. I became a journalist.

Okay, laugh if you must. At least I’m not among politician­s who have one thing in common with diapers. They should both be changed regularly – and for the same reason.

So there. He-he.

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