With alarming assurance my eldest son tells me I will cop it in the first round of a dystopian world or zombie apocalypse because I came without the elbow-in-your-face evolutionary gene required for survival.
The look he exchanges with his younger brother combines exasperation and silent strategizing – they don’t want me to be taken out and put on a braai grid when there’s nothing to eat but the neighbor (I’ve got a bit of flesh on my bones, but good luck trying to eat my insides; there are some unappetizing twists and turns in there).
I suspect, in a world gone to hell, my sons will take turns piggybacking me across a desolate, trashed town. I’m unable to walk because I’ve had my legs pulled so often, they’ve fallen off. Dodging rasping, reaching zombies, they’ll dart into abandoned buildings to escape the masses and put me down for five minutes.
When they find a safe zone, a place to stash me for the afternoon while they go scrounging for supplies, my youngest will say slowly, Mom, look at me, look at me. Are you listening? Don’t cough. Don’t sneeze. No watching YouTube. Put your phone in battery saver mode. Mom? Are you listening?
My eldest will say melodiously, Ma, this is a f*ck*ng kuk situation, OK, so don’t be a sweet f*ck*ng fairy and think the oke walking past is going to be nice, OK? And hide your water.
When they return with a bottle of SPF30 (for me) and a bottle of strong spirits (for them) and a tin of sweetcorn (for all of us) lordy! will they be surprised: my legs have reattached themselves, I’ve got a fire going, there’s a cluster of scruffy new friends pooling meager resources, and (this is the best part of what I now suspect is my fantasy) I’ve made a zombie-klapping stick they will reach for in awe, weigh in their hands, whoosh through the air …
… Ag no man. I made only one. This is going to be a KUK situation.
PS Posted this on Facebook some time ago. Any unrecognizable words are South African slang.