As I had on numerous occasions done, I sat, observed, and passed subtle judgements on those around me.
From their appearances to their behaviours, I had something for everyone. The woman sitting to my right was for example racist. “Definitely racist” I thought to myself, the criteria were met, she was old, wrinkly, white and grew up in Nazi Germany. And despite her frequent fake smiles directed towards me, with which I responded with fake smiles of my own, my conclusion was certain. Verdict?. “Racist!”
On innumerable occasions, my tongue, quick to say the worst, had gotten me into trouble that had left me with a scarred face, bruised nose, dislocated elbows, disfigured lips.. et al. So I had learned to do more of my judging in my mind. And nowhere was more fitting for my guilty pleasure than the 3rd floor of the “Queen Mary” complex. It was where Dr Neugebauer attended to his German patients. And although I wasn’t German, I had studied the language extensively.
The “Hausatrz Praxis” was a place I had become so accustomed to that I even had a favorite chair. And on this very day, while pretending to be totally engrossed in my reading, I had my eyes set on the obese, obnoxious lady sitting exactly opposite to me. “What does she eat?”, “what was she thinking till she got this fat?”, “Does she do anything other than sit on her lazy ass and eat?”, “I’m so glad, I don’t have to sit besides such an unpleasant lady”, “what if she gets hungry and eats us all?”, “what a bloody elephant!”.
As these thoughts went through my mind, she received a phone call and suddenly began to yell into her phone at someone I had deduced to be her daughter. “Ach, was soll der scheiss?”. “Er soll sich doch verpissen”, she rambled and prattled and ranted for what seemed like an eternity before putting down her phone.
“That person must have advised her to eat healthy” I joked to myself. I had barely enough time to laugh at my own joke when she got at it again, causing a pandemonium, this time a poor nurse the victim of her histrionic outburst. “Wo ist der verdammte Artz” she yelled. “Ich will hier den ganzen tag doch nich bleiben”, which translated to ” where is the damn doctor?, I don’t intend to stay here all day” Now extremely irritated by her constant whining, I let out a heavy sigh “what a pig, bloody Nazi” I thought. No, I must have whispered and audibly too, because she immediately glanced me an angry look.
“What did you just call me?” I heard her reply “did you just call me a pig, and a Nazi?” She continued. I stared, dumbfounded at my new predicament. She must have muttered something about being half English, but I didn’t care now. “Why didn’t she say that earlier?”.
Her eyes were red and fiery, fury written all over it, she was on her feet now, towering above me, ears stretched demanding an explanation. My death, I had often pictured would be on an hospital bed in the tender hands of a loved one. Clearly I was wrong. Today is the day I die, and this giant German lady was about to become a murderer.
Tobi Adeyemi is a columnist for The Transparent Magazine based in Europe.