By Rafiek Mammon
People often ask me what my favourite something is. A movie, a song, a colour. That
sort of thing. Or, they want to know what your favourite book is. I hate that question,
simply because I don’t have a favourite movie/book/song/colour. I have a few that I
like. And, depending on my mood, even the favourites change all the time.
I used to think nothing of it when I was younger – the fact that my favourites change
all the time – but of late I have begun to question this capriciousness. Is it wrong to
have a few favourites? Or is it okay?
Perhaps, I thought I was just being too harsh on myself. After all, it’s just a movie.
But then again, perhaps the principle of what’s good for the goose might be at play
here. Perhaps this is precisely how I have lived my life thus far – changing constantly
– from places that lived in to jobs that I have done, to partners. It made me re-evaluate
constantly, and I love that. Knowledge, they say is power. The right application of
said knowledge, methinks, is even more powerful.
Freedom of choice is also very highly prized in this democracy of ours. Personal
freedom, I believe, is even more deserving of praise. In there, you see, lies the
individuality, and it is becoming more and more difficult for people to express their
individuality or their sense of personal freedom or personal choice.
But, once again, I am going off on a tangent.
First pondering (re the fickleness regarding movies and the like): Does it speak to
issues of loyalty and commitment? Or, is it merely a case of, as we grow older, and
develop, so do our taste buds? I used to find ‘The Cosby Show’ hilarious when I was
younger; ‘Full House’ was even funny then. Now I watch it and want to cover up the
mirrors so that I don’t see my own face’s embarrassment. Is it perhaps because there
is so much choice these days and that at the time we could only watch the garbage
they threw at us? Or, especially with comedy, is it really just a matter of taste? I know
so many people who like the American style of sitcom – with those hideously written
and predictable scripts and their ubiquitous customary family values thrown either in
your face or subliminally.
Me, I’m more of a British humour-type person – from ‘Little Britain’ to ‘Catherine
Tate’ and of course the classics like the Monty Python team and ‘Fawlty Towers’
(which, by the way I have just recently re-watched like for the 100th time. An episode
like ‘The Germans’ – who can ever get enough of that, right?)
I also own a few (quite a few) DVD’s. People borrow them from time to time. They
look through my collection and don’t know half the titles. Or some of them would ask
me to recommend a good comedy. I am always very hesitant, especially with comedy.
Let’s face it, some are ‘Bakgat 3’ and ‘Kaalgat Tussen Die Daisies’, types while
others have more a of a discerning set of taste buds. I am an in betweener. I don’t look
down on the ‘Bakgat’ people but I certainly won’t recommend ‘The Holy Grail’ to
them. Know what I mean?
I chatted to a friend about this the other day. He felt similarly, but at the same time
hadn’t given it too much thought. We spoke, especially about our childhood and how
things changed at such an alarming rate. One minute you want to be in a band, the
next you’re in a coma, that sort of thing. Best friends change daily, depending on
what’s on offer. How, when your cousin comes to visit, you can easily make your best
friend your worst enemy and treat him/her like dirt. One can be so malicious when
one is a child, isn’t it?
But, at the same time of being cunning and oh-so-erratic, one also develops a sense of
commitment, learning about making up for one’s mistakes and learning about forgiveness, compromise and the like. Things we should be adept at when becoming
adults. Yeah right!
Actually, my friend and I thought in conclusion, not much has changed since being
children. The stakes are perhaps higher when we parley. The insincerity, though is
often more contemptuous and far more eternal.
By Rafiek Mammon