Friday, March 14, 2014

Lessons From Boxing To Prevent Domestic Violence In Your Relationship

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By Baba Willy

Now I must confess that my relationship with boxing falls into the stop it, I like it category. As a physician, one is opposed to all manner of intentional violence, yet as a sports fan one not only wants to see the gloved human fist turned into a general anaesthetic apparatus, one also wants to join in with the referee as his swings his arm making that beautiful count to ten. Oh, the jubilant as the disoriented boxer staggers on all fours on the canvas trying in vain to retain his mouth guard and some remnant of dignity.

Yet for all the barbaric activities in the ring, it is a noble sport. No punches are thrown after the bell, punches are kept above the waist and the conduct between opponents is generally gentlemanly. Most important of all, there is no reserve bench as occurs in football. Boxing is a one man show and you just cannot signal to the bench half way during a fight pointing at your hamstrings and doing that circular motion with the hands which indicates a desire to be substituted.  This I believe teaches responsibility for one’s actions. The buck really stops on your head as a boxer. The next important thing that boxing teaches is that you only fight your sex and your weight class.

It is a vital piece of education that if fully understood will greatly reduce the fighting that occurs in homes worldwide and in various parliamentary buildings. I am not sure that women will ever want to challenge the sex discrimination that exists in the boxing ring for it exists with good reason. Men are simply physically stronger, so it would not be a contest to see men fight women but rather good old fashioned bullying, which in itself is neither entertaining nor competitive. The weight discrimination is also expedient for apart from a certain fight between a David Jesse and Goliath, size really does matter.

Boxers are thus placed in various categories which include featherweight, welterweight, and flyweights. Cruiser weights light heavy weights and heavyweights. All men should know this but they don’t.  One particular man from my village did not know about the sex or weight discriminations that should be engaged in during fights. He unfortunately spent every spare minute he had on Grand Theft Auto and Fifa 2013, computer games that taught him nothing he did not know. A Nigerian cannot be taught about stealing having read about financial crimes in the newspapers from birth. As for football, that is the National obsession. He should have been busy in the boxing  ring like Madiba  but the silly man did not box or even own a skipping rope for that matter and what a huge prize he paid for his ignorance and indolence.

It was a hot day in October and he returned home to a note that his food was in the oven. His wife had gone to see her sister who had just given birth. He took exception to this and refused to eat for he felt she should have waited for him to return, served his food before venturing out. He sent the three kids to bed and when on his games console and started jerking all limbs as he indulged his addiction.

His wife returned close to midnight and after a few angry words he slapped her across the face.

‘Ochuko you slapped me? I don suffer’

He was back on his games console and without looking up he said , ‘Go and warm up my food if you know what is good for you’.

At this point his wife sat on the floor and began to cry.

‘If you don’t shut up and I will slap that cry out of your mouth!’ he threatened.

The camel’s spine was fractured and his wife lost her temper. The last time she had been this angry fifteen years ago a family meeting was convened in which she was forbidden to ever lose her temper. This was many years before she met Ochuko.

‘This world is not your home, you are just passing through…’ she began to sing, as that was how she warmed up when she was ready for a fight. She too was in need of the tutelage boxing offers, for she weighed a hundred and twenty kilograms compared to Ochuko’s fourty nine kilograms.

Ochuko stood up to make good his threat and she blocked his hand like the National Judo Champion she used to be and lifted Ochuko clean off the ground narrowly missing the swirling blades of the ceiling fan. She held him as if asking God if He recognised the imposter she had found in her house. God remained silent and so she decided to bring him down forcefully on the glass coffee table which scattered to a thousand pieces. Their flat shook and the children ran out. They caught a glimpse of mummy picking up a concussed daddy by the belt and collar and flinging him across the living room straight to the flat screen television. The sound produced was a mixture of scattering glass, a minor electrical explosion and human suffering. Ochuko slumped to the floor and blood came forth from both nostrils and mouth.

‘Mummy, leave dad alone!’ the kids cried out but when mummy looked up and met their eyes, they all fled and hid under their beds in the room. The rats and cockroaches picked up the scent of fear and asked the kids why they went out black and returned Caucasian for they were that pale and sweaty with fright. They told the tale and the rats and roaches fled next door soon to be followed by the mosquitoes. Hell had descended on the flat. By now mummy was shouting at the top of her voice.

‘Ochuko is killing me o! Somebody help me o!’

The kids went back to see daddy’s miraculous turnaround in this clash of the domestic Titans but it was a ploy. Mummy was also in the drama group many years back in University and she had skills. They watched her crying loudly while she lifted Ochuko into the air, this time connecting with the ceiling fan for they saw a shoe fly across the room. Luckily Ochuko’s foot was not amputated. His wife threw him across the room crashing into the aquarium.

‘Shebi you like fish eh. Delta man. Ogbaje man. Mammi water idiot. Marine spirit devil. Nonsense man!’ she screamed and Ochuko laid flat on his back surrounded by jumping fish fighting for their lives on the carpet.

The neighbours by now were at the door. Mildred, for that was Ochuko’s wife’s name tore her blouse , calmly walked over to Ochuko and scooped blood off his face and applied it to her face and chest. She then collapsed on the floor.

When the neighbours broke through, Ochoko had to save face. He stood up like a drunk  surfer  on choppy waters  totally disorientated and was shouting, ‘Hold me o! Hold me! I will kill this woman today’. The men held him back and the women covered Mildred up and took her next door.

The good news is Ochuko only spent two weeks in hospital and has since started his daily boxing classes. Another family meeting was convened behind closed doors and Mildred got a strong telling off from her family. Ochuko found out during that meeting that Mildred had won a Commonwealth Silver medal in Judo back in the day.

Dr Wilson Orhiunu

PS - This is a satire. Please say no to domestic violence.

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