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Showing posts from August, 2018

Gain Something in Zulu

To gainsomething is -zuza in Zulu.

What you have gained is known as i-nzu-zo, which is a noun.A baby girl’s name is No-nzu-zo and you know it is a girl because of the prefix -no.My name is No-nqaba, a girl.Well! used to be, at least.Ha! Ha! You buy fish for 20 Naira (Nigerian currency) from fishermen, sell it in small packets and get N40, a 100% profit.Politicians support companies that pollute rivers, the sea and the air we breathe because of the gain: votes.

British, Canadian and U.S. designers make a big deal when Meghan Markle is wearing their creations but do not shout on top of rooftops that their clothes are made in minimum wage conditions in Asia and eastern Europe. When we take wrong decisions and parents tell us we will reap what we sow, which means gaining or having those decisions backfire.
Zu-za.You pronounce the first part as in zoo, the last part of the verb as Zara.

ZULU ENGLISH No-nzu-zo. A girl’s name about something the family hopes to gain from her birth or has gained alr…

Remember in Zulu

Back to school, kids must remember to take their back-packs.

Remember is khumbula in Zulu. It is remembering something that happened some time ago or missing somebody.First day at school will see some tears as little ones miss their parents and vice versa.

Prosecutors and lawyers want people to remember where they were when the crime was committed, even the time.I find that ridiculous because no clock or watches show the same time, and people don’t look at the watches or cellphones when a crime is committed or when they are shot by stray bullets. Khu-mbu-la. You say the first part like cook, the second part like embers, but with a -u- and the last part as in lass.

ZULU ENGLISH Khumbulani. A girl’s name which means a family must remember. Khumbula. A boy’s name which means you must remember. Si-khumbuzo. A boy’s name, the thing that makes us remember or a symbol of remembrance. A-ngi-sa-khu-mbu-li. I don’t remember anymore (old people sometimes forget). Ngi-ya-ba-khu-mbula. I miss them. Si-ya-ba-khu-m…

Data vs Date

In development.

This is what movie producers say when they do coffee with other film types.They might buy my book Sweetness and turn it into a movie starring me of course or ask someone with little clothes on, but has a million views a day to headline the project. We saw a great potential for a movie the other day.We are staring at a traffic light counting seconds for it to turn green for pedestrians, but the eye was caught by something more captivating than the city’s robots, as they say down south in Africa.

Boy and girl are at a coffee shop.Boy is making love to his phone.Girl touches her hair as they do in the movies.Boy continues to scroll down the phone.Girls moves her chair closer to boy.Boy frowns and moves his chair away.Girls smiles, thinking it’s because boy wants to make room for her.Girl puts her arm around boy’s shoulders. Traffic light opens.These Canadian avenues are massive and by the time we cross over, boy and girl have stood up and are walking away.Girl puts her arm ar…

Asking Nicely in Zulu

Ask for something politely in Zulu is ce-la.Some fundamentals first, which you will need for all other lessons.

Si-: is we, asking for something.

Ngi-: is me, asking for something.
Ba-: they, many people asking for something. Ni-: you, many people asking for something
U-: you one person, asking for something.

Kids are brought up to ask nicely, not to demand things which is fu-na in Zulu. If you value your behind, you don’t storm into the house and demand food from your mother.Go and look for it in the forest, is the standard reply from most parents.

When visiting a home in South Africa, you’ll see kids knocking on the door.They have come to ask for their friend, to go and play.Si-ce-la u-Duma.
Ce-la:the first part sounds like the exclamation Ci! Ci! Ci! Ci!The second part of the verb is pronounced like lass.

ZULU ENGLISH Celiwe. A girl’s name, meaning the one we asked for. Sicelo. A boy’s name, meaning a request. Ngi-ce-la i-tiye ne-muffin. May I have tea and a muffin please. Si-ce-la u-Duma. We would …

Patience in Zulu


There is no patience in the world but please, don’t blame the internet for its posts and videos as many as sand particles on the seashore. Africa has customs about naming children.Themba, which means hope, is a popular boy’s or girl’s name but I have never come across kids called i-si-ne-ke.

There is a triangle of convenience that makes us impatient with cooking, waiting for the pot to boil or chicken in the oven.The triangle is buying pre-packaged food from the food mart, drop it in the microwave, eat and throw the container in the black plastic garbage bag.Who cares about the environment? Patience is i-si-ne-ke in Zulu. I think the noun is a sister to a snail, which is called u-mne-ke.You know that the snail takes its time, but it reaches its destination, the end of the forest. We don’t appreciate Canada Post, Atlanta USPS and other postal workers anymore because they deliver ‘snail mail.’Fast mail is in your phone or computer. I-si-ne-ke.You say the first part like …

Pour in Zulu

Thela is to pour in Zulu.You pour water in a basin or down the drain, pour gas in the car or pour milk in your whole wheat porridge.
You don’t help the situation when you say negative things when couples or families are fighting.A calming influence is needed, someone who can pour water in the fire, not fan the flames. When you hire a car in South Africa, you’ll stop at a gas station.The gas attendant, called a petrol attendant will ask you, Si-the-la ma-li-ni?How much do we pour in the gas tank?This will most likely happen if you black because they won’t know that you are African American or a black person from other parts of the world.They see someone who looks like them.
The-la.The first part of the verb is pronounced like tell and the second part like lark.

ZULU ENGLISH The-la u-bi-si. Pour milk/Add milk. The-la a-ma-nzi.Ngi-ge-ze i-nga-ne. Pour water so that I can give the child a bath. The-la-ni a-manzi, u-ci-she u-mli-lo. Pour water to extinguish the fire. Ngi-zo-ni the-le-la u-lemonade. I’…

Preach in Zulu

To preach is shu-ma-ye-la in Zulu.Prophets preach, some are genuine, others are con artists like the Queen of England. The British brought two things to Africa, India, Australia, New Zealand and North America: the gun and false prophets.

The two were designed to steal the land from indigenous people.They took the land through the barrel of the gun and supplemented the theft with false Christian bishops and churches that told indigenous people to forget their religion and take the Jesus Christ route. Anybody living in the United Kingdom will tell you that the British are the most un-Christian people in the world.They don’t attend church.If they do, it’s for 30 minutes and then detour to the pub.

The Queen of England is yet to apologise for lying to Africans, Indians, the Irish and indigenous people of Canada and the U.S. She told them to close their eyes to pray only to open them and find that the British had erected fences and instituted something called title deeds. Shu-ma-ye-la.You pro…

Testify in Zulu

Fa-ka-za, give evidence or proof.

U-bu-fa-ka-zi is proof in Zulu, but I’m in a quandary.Is giving proof and testifying in court one and the same thing?Testifying can be anywhere, not just in court.I suppose testifying is about the truth of the matter. Old Hollywood movies liked the story idea of the Mafia killing a potential witness, which sometimes led to a witness protection programme.Such movies were so prolific, ordinary Italians had to fend off the stigma that they were all Mafia.Whether the Mafia was for real, or just Hollywood’s imagination, we would never know.

Fa-ka-za.The first syllable is pronounced like famine, the second like kamikaze and the last one like Zagreb.
ZULU ENGLISH Fakazile. A girl’s name, the one who testified, or gave proof.It depends on the circumstances of her birth.Maybe the father said the baby was not his, and guess what, the little girl is his spitting image, like Malia Obama and her dad, Barack Obama. Fakaza. A boy’s name meaning testify or give proof. Fa…

Come Here In Zulu

Come in Zulu is i-za or wo-za.The root of the verb is za, as in Zanzibar.

·When addressing one person you say i-za or wo-za.
·When addressing two or more, you say i-za-ni or wo-za-ni.
Remember, the -ni at the end of a verb means many people. i-za.You pronounce the first part like e-mail, the second part like Zagreb.

wo-za-ni.You pronounce the first part like war, the second part like Zagreb, the last part like kneel. Calling someone has its own protocol. Managers call people to their offices.There is no recorded case where the worker says to the manager, ‘can I see you in my cubicle?’In Africa, parents call children.Kids don’t yell Mummy and demand this and that.

Going somewhere with people who don’t keep time can drive you up the wall. ‘I’m coming. I’m coming.’ That’s their favourite line.
ZULU ENGLISH Themba, wo-za la. Themba, come here. Thobile, wo-za la. Thobile, come here. I-za. Si-ha-mbe. Come, let’s go. Wo-za. Si-ha-mbe. Come, let’s go. Lancelot, Maria, Paulos, wo-za-ni. Lancelot, Maria, Paulo…