Last month I saw the small space that Botswana occupies in the twitter-scope blow up when rumours that the government would be disallowing the sale of alcohol in the middle of the ‘Festive Season’ began circulating unabated on the internet.
There were many different reactions from various types of Botswana Internet Users varying from complete outrage to self-righteous defence of the proposed policy. I, however, found myself most amused by the reactions I got from the realm of Twitter that I consider myself to occupy—the international armchair-intellectuals’ Twitter.
Our neighbours from all around the SADC region did not shy away from openly ridiculing the proposed alcohol ban. I found myself being the Botswana representative in this little circle of Twitter as well as the butt of all the jokes that came along with this news.
At first I laughed along with them but soon found myself quite unable to bare it when the discussion quickly turned into personal attacks against my sweet Ian Khama. For you see, I can take any jokes made about this country but a personal jibe at Uncle Ian is inexcusable.
I found myself regretting for weeks that I stayed silent while they attacked our Emperor. Every night I’d wake up from a feverish nightmare with the words, ‘you should have told them the truth’ ringing in my ears like I imagine the cries of baby boys do in the ears of Catholic Priests.
So here’s my chance to do it—to tell the world the truth.
You see, fellow Africans; everything Uncle Ian does is out of love for his lovely (though often ungrateful) citizens. If it is true that alcohol won’t be sold at a specified period during the festive season it is only for one reason—to test us.
Because, you and I and Father Ian know full well that there’s no way a bunch of closed bottle stores is going to stop citizens of this great nation from drinking. To the hilarious contrary it will in fact inspire us all to find very creative ways to get our favourite bottled national pastime as close to us as possible during this festive season.
And that’s the point. Ian is actually hosting a competition to see how much alcohol we can get and enjoy during a time when it will be absolutely impossible to find any in Botswana. Genius–isn’t it? It’s all part of his new campaign to inspire us to be as enterprising as all the other Africans seem to be and help us lose our reputation for being the lazy kids of Africa.
So I say, embrace it. Find the most creative way to stock your fridge full of your favourite brews. If that means you have to have a surgery to remove your ability to feel shame before you cross the border for the sole purpose of filling your boot with tonnes of alcohol then so be it.
And if you haven’t the means to do that and instead decide to teach yourself how to brew your own alcohol then even more props to you! You’ll have earned yourself a spot in the top ten Most Creative Ways To Get Drunk portion of Uncle Ian’s competition.
Good luck, in advance, my fellow citizens.