“He who knows not, but knows not he knows not – he is a fool. Shun him!”
These words of apparent wisdom spent a goodly portion of Saturday afternoon running through my mind, closely followed by the semi-rhetorical question, “If you hang out with an idiot, then what kind of an idiot does that make you?” (I say semi-rhetorical, because frankly, I don’t believe degrees of idiocy are all that important).
I’d been invited to a traditional South African burnt offering ceremony* and when the smoke cleared sufficiently for me to see who else was there, I discovered that one of the attendees was an individual whose company I would really rather avoid. Unfortunately, it was too late to flee without insulting the host, so I plastered a sickly grin across my face and tried to breathe normally, thinking, “Oh well, at least it can’t get any worse”. Of course I was wrong, because I soon discovered that the guy’s parents were also attending IdiotFest 2006.
I learned one thing, though. When a psychiatrist steeples his fingers and says, “Tell me about your mother”, he isn’t necessarily full of shit and / or playing for time.
* or ‘braai‘, which is an acronym for ‘Incinerate Various Cuts of Meat on an Open Fire While Drinking Your Brain Into Extinction’**
** Okay, so it’s not a particularly good acronym.