Humour Corner: Not at all gravity

Category: Writing aboard the Kenya Airways: A story on coming to Rwanda for the first time
Published on Thursday, 09 April 2009 03:24
Written by Dr. Jok Madut Jok
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jiriak
Jiriak Manasseh is a columnist for NSV
Hello folks. I hope you had a marvellous fortnight, and you’ve met different and new people. Isn’t it always a good thing when you come across some really interesting people, who just make the day worth looking back at when it’s all done and dusted?

 

Well, I don’t really know about you but I surely like bumping across new and interesting people. But that’s not really the point here, trying to know if you’ve met some people or not.

 

Maybe you’re already wondering what gravity has to do with meeting people. You should stop right there, because this time, gravity does have something to do with meeting people. Yes, I got accused of being a friend to someone who erroneously made a supposition about gravity, someone who got it totally wrong by going against the constancy of gravity! It’s totally like saying that the total surface area of South Sudan has decreased. Ok, may be that’s not really a wise comparison. We all know that the surface area of South Sudan does decrease; the land is miraculously sliding northwards, inhabitants included. And some quarters are all happy about it!

 

Let’s get back to the story of my accusation. I was walking down Yonge Street one chilly winter day. (I wonder why it’s called ‘walking down somewhere?’ How was it determined that walking facing a certain direction constituted ‘walking up’ and vice versa?). Yonge Street, is this long street in downtown Toronto, Canada, which I haven’t really figured out where it starts or ends. It makes me think at times that it goes right through Lake Ontario, emerging on the other side to the south and going all the way to the Antarctic Circle, and to the north all the way to the Arctic Circle, with the section through lake going with perhaps the name Yonge waterway! A marine life accident in that section should by the way make an intriguing news headlines: ‘Shark and crocodile collide on Yonge waterway, killing 20 tunas.’

 

By and large, let’s get back to my story about being accused of having a friend who made a total mess of gravitational fact.

 

I was walking leisurely down (or up) the street, albeit with little difficulty trying to keep my balance on the icy pavements, hands tucked deep down my multiple layers of pant’s pockets as possible to conceal any bare parts of my hands and prevent them from rivalling that chunk of drumsticks forgotten somewhere in my fridge.  Then right in front of me, her figure emerged, and beyond her a long line of people laboriously trying to keep their balance, and at the same time, anxious to get past my alleged friend.

 

The long line of people almost made me think that there was some promotional event taking place and people were lining up to get cheap deals. Every step she took left a puddle of liquid water in the footprints behind her, making walking a hell for the throng tailing her…against their wishes! Trying to overtake her would mean jumping onto the road and risk a knock from the awed drivers.  She reached me and stopped abruptly! I could hear silent groans from the folks behind her as I lowered my view to the ground beneath her, silently wondering how she managed to haul herself out of her house unto the street! From the impact of pressure imposed on it by her feet, the ice was turning into liquid faster than a Bunsen burner would achieve in the same time period. 

 

With a smile that looked somewhat forced she said, ‘hey, would u happen to have a lighter on you? Mine is like frozen and I can’t use it!’ It was then that she noticed I was staring at her feet and as a result she said, ‘Oh, I see you’re surprised why I’m standing on water while it’s all icy everywhere. I tend to think that the earth’s gravity has increased and the pull is really strong. That’s why the ice is melting under my feet.’ How it was that the lighter got frozen in her hand still is beyond my fathoming capabilities because even the chilly winter wind could not keep up with refreezing the ice that was melting due to her walking on it! Nonetheless, I realized that she just said the pull of gravity was responsible for her weightiness! Just then the man behind her was yelling, telling me; ‘could you and your friend move aside and let us pass please?’

 

That was it! How could the man accuse me of having a friend who blames the gravitational pull for her weight problems? During these times of conflict in thoughts, I tend to think a lot and a flashback brought me to a period in time. I had this friend and one time while she was paying me a visit, she missed being hit by a car. She’d said that the wind blew her into the path of the car, making the driver shouts at her; ‘what the hell is wrong with you. Can you get some fat on you?’

 

I just thought if she could’ve used the same excuse of the earth’s gravitational pull, in that instance, having decreased! Would it mean then that the pull of gravity due to earth shifts between a minimum and a maximum across all the 6 billion inhabitants of the earth at the same time, and that it’s selective?

 

If one day you happen to hop on a scale and it reads out a huge number or a low number, and you brush it aside thinking that it’s all the habitual increase/decrease in the pull of gravity, think twice! You should consider taking your Body Mass Index (BMI)!!

 

Have a decisive week folks!!

*Jiriak Manasseh is  a student at University of Toronto, Canada, studying Double Major, Environmental Geosciences and Chemistry. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . He's a columnist for The New Sudan Vision.