‘LIBRARIA DYSLEXIA’ Presents: Giuseppe In Africa !
(A Tale Of 2 Cities or A Sale Of 2 Titties ?).
The English language is a wonderful, flexible beast.
Unlike the beautiful French tongue whereby academic gatekeepers are responsible for keeping the lingua ‘pure’, English invites endless innovation & absorbs more easily the
creativity that it inspires.
As it pertains to British English & American, a wise head once proclaimed that the 2 nations are separated by a common language. Often, the same word is displaced by a different spelling. As is the case with the word ‘Jail’ which those willfully contrarian Union Jack bitches spell as in ‘the Ballad Of Reading Gaol’ referencing the great Oscar Wilde. Which as might be imagined, can prove tricky for the dyslexic among us.
My father in law, ‘Beppe’ Francone (a common nickname for Giuseppe [Joseph] in these here parts), was once tasked with representing his company’s business interests at an international conference in Nigeria Africa. A very good writer (his mother was a published poet & playwright), he looked forward to working on his presentation for the event, where he was honored by his peers to be a featured speaker. Having not yet been to the continent of Africa, he admitted some nervousness that he didn’t say something inappropriate, as our Italian tribal constituents are often known to do.
Indeed, for every CICERO, a SISYPHUS responds.
Taking the podium, he said that he looked out amongst a sea of very rich & capable Nigerian faces. The nation of Nigeria is renowned for producing some pretty smart bitches
& these well heeled gentlemen were all of the successful sort. Adjusting himself & clearing his throat, he began reading what he’d composed for that exciting, special afternoon.
He was delighted that all seemed to be going well, his confidence growing parallel to the acceptance he felt in the midst of his speech. He recalled the audience being in a most jovial mood, UP UNTIL the moment when he happened upon the conclusion that had been prepared as his last sentence.
“AND IN CONCLUSION, I SUBMIT THAT, SHOULD WE UNDERTAKE THESE OBJECTIVES THAT I HAVE RECOMMENDED, WE WILL MOST SURELY MANAGE TO REACH OUR GAOL.”
Beppe said that a swift chill spread over the room SO FAST, that it brought immediately to mind, all of the ways in which a northern Italian man can die at the hands of ALL OF THESE MOTHERFUCKERS IN THEIR OWN COUNTRY ! The smiles that had accompanied his genial spirit throughout his offering to the oligarchs of opinionated opprobrium vanished like a helium balloon in a harsh & harrowing wind.
Quickly disposed of himself, he searched for where it had all gone horribly wrong.
With what seemed like an eternity in hell’s parking lot, he none too soon discovered where he’d gone astray, collected himself & his breath once more (into the breach) and then reread:
“SHOULD WE FOLLOW THESE RECOMMENDATIONS, WE WILL MOST SURELY MANAGE TO REACH OUR ‘GOAL’ !!!
The Nigerian attendees, very conversant in the English language, immediately let out a roar of laughter that refilled the conference room with the same level of bountiful gaiety, that had been preceded by mystified suspicion.
Surfing on this wave of great relief, Beppe repeated “We Will Reach Our ‘GOAL’, Not Our ‘GAOL’.
He told me that his sense of obvious relief only endeared him more to the audience.
Because these cats for sure were not trying to earn any ‘Jail (Gaol) time’ any time soon.
He’d simply in a rush to make an impressionable flourish, gotten slightly dyslexic & visually confused the word GOAL with GAOL. No thanks to our British compatriots who clearly never quite thought this shit through when composing the rules of the spelling laws to which many of us are yet obliged. And my father in law as a consequence said that for a brief moment in the dizzying vortex of space time, he could feel ALL of the blood draining from his head & could swear he heard African drums & Tarzan’s voice getting closer & closer to his benighted fate.
At that afternoons banquet, he reported that the food never tasted so good nor the wine as sweet, and that the gathered business men all came up to him in turns to tell him just how much they’d appreciated his entertaining & inspiring talk. Apparently they gave him credit for his reading being intentionally designed to produce that dramatic moment, an ice breaker for sure in what was usually a very drab & boring portion of the day’s itinerary.
AND he got the business contacts he went there in search of.
A very thorough & practical man, (as many ‘Piemontese’, born & bred in Torino [Turin] are typecast to be), he once told me that the problem with fixing world hunger was that the people gathered together to discuss the issue would be interrupted by a lunch or dinner feast that would put the Michelin mandate to shame.
“INSTEAD, THEY SHOULD LOCK THE DOORS OF THE CONVENTION HALL & NOT LET THEM COME OUT TO EAT UNTIL THEY’VE COME UP WITH A SOLUTION. AND THAT WOULD END WORLD HUNGER QUICKLY.”
Indeed it is hard to expect gluttony to procure patronage for the peoples of poverty.
Meanwhile, he said that he’d made lifelong friends with a few of the men who bore witness to his near Nigerian debacle. And was certainly a man much more inclined in the years to come to CHECK & CHECK AGAIN the written page before making any bellicose suggestions to any group of individuals, any time, any tribe, anywhere.
And that whatever presumptions presented to his mind pre-trip were punctured by the preemptive power of experience. And the unifying nature of language correctly utilized.
And this concludes another thrilling episode in our ‘Libraria Dyslexia’ series,
We Do Hope That You’ve Enjoyed this Story, but just one incident from a lifetime of collecting chronicles & anecdotes & tales both short & tall.
Mid January 2022.
‘EDITED BY W. MARMOSET YARN’ for TreeHouse Publishing &
‘Shoot First & Ask Christian Slater’ Productions & the Chasen Ketchenegger
‘BEPPE WITH THE REMNANTS OF THE WILD BOAR THAT HAD BEEN TERRORIZING HIS PROPERTY DURING THE PANDEMIC. IT TOOK ALMOST A YEAR TO FINALLY BRING ORDER BACK TO HIS VEGETABLE GARDEN ONCE HE GOT THE DOGS BACK ON THE ESTATE. MOST OF THE SAUSAGES WENT TO THE RESIDENCE HOME For THE ELDERLY (where his ‘Zia’ is), SOME TO HIS LOCAL FOOD BANK, & the REST TO APPRECIATIVE FAMILY MEMBERS.’
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