I beat up a cripple once

April 10, 2009 § 3 Comments

Does that make me evil? Before you judge me let me explain myself. The punk was asking for it and I gave it to him, reluctantly I might add.

I grew up in the rural areas kids, I’m sure you can tell by my lack of sophistication. Anyway, I had an altercation with a local village boy who was slightly older. I think he had polio because he wore leg braces and his right leg was a whole lot shorter than the other. As a result one of his shoes had a really thick and heavy sole. The weight on his right shoe caused him to drag it around. I never understood why the weaker and shorter leg had all that extra work to do than the perfectly healthy one. It is a metaphor for life I guess, the less fortunate carry all the load. It seemed like it was being punished for not being strong enough.

When he walked, he sort of half dragged his leg. With every step he took, he looked as if he was on the verge of tripping and falling because of the severity of the limp. I have to describe what he was like so you know that this was not a fight that should have happened.

As I have said, I don’t recall what the fight was about but it happened. I remember him walking towards me with clenched fists, limping severely. There was a group of say, 10 other boys my age. I kept saying to him, “Look, I can’t fight you and I don’t want to fight you.” But he kept coming after me. Well, I didn’t want to lose face in front of all these village boys, I knew that I would lose respect and I would be known as the boy who ran away from a cripple. The consequences of that is that every boy in the village would think he could take his chances with me.

So I stood my ground. He threw a fist at me and missed. It was easy to duck because, well, he was slow and his leg caused him to telegraph each swing of his fists. While I ducked I would say, “Dude,” (obviously in Xhosa) “I don’t want to fight you.” I got tired of ducking and diving. I decided to end this thing once and for all. I punched him in the face and he fell. I remember feeling so bad that I helped him up. He gets up and swings again, I swing back and he falls down again. I help him up again he still swings! The audacity! I punch him one more time and once again, he collapses into a heap and this time I don’t help him and I tell him I don’t want to fight him and then I walked away. Does this make me evil?

§ 3 Responses to I beat up a cripple once

  • rainhanzinga says:

    hahahahahahah!! you need to write a book…

  • Ndumiso says:


  • Thandiwe says:

    Khaya, it makes you very mean…evil is a very strong word, but you could use that too. I would have to say though that I would have rather walked away, even before the punches but boys always feel a very unnescessary need to prove their man(in you case, boy)hood!

    But I am not commenting just because of this story in particular, but of the parelle theme I see with South Africans. We care too much what others think of us, so much so it affect sus doing what is right. How many girls can openly voice their virginity without feeling condemned? I do it, but to arouse for open debate, but I know many fall trap to having to “prove themselves: to peers, who are the first to tell everyone how she is a slut or a hoe!

    I am however grateful of you blog; hope it allows for more debate from us at the youth of South Africa.

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