Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Finding the unexpected in Osu

I spent last week in an antibiotic haze hobbling around in flip-flops after splitting my big toe in a hair-raising jump I made over our gate at home induced by 3am callers from MTWAG (Machete Wielding Thieves Association of Ghana). To add salt to my wounds, my laptop adaptor decided to pack in so I was forced to go out in search of a new one. So I dragged along my national service person (NSP) Kwaku. No, I actually do not have him assigned to me but rather to my department...There are about 10 young'uns in our department but Kwaku has interned with us before and is so much fun to pal around with.

To pal around: [definition] Associate as friends or chums, as in Bill and [Obama] have been palling around for years
Definition courtesy of Dictionary.com. [Obama] addition courtesy of Mrs. Sarah Palin

I should mention that Kwaku is a great sport about driving 'cross town to get all sorts of weird things for people including myself.
Anyway, Kwaku and I made our way to traffic jammed Oxford Street in Osu. For some reason, this seems to have turned into the IT store centre of Accra. We went to a couple of stores, in the first one the dodgy people in charge asked if we wanted the real adaptors for GHC 70.00 (approx. $70.00) or the fake type going for GHC 35.00 ($35.00). When I eventually found what I wanted in another store for GHC 70.00, I had an uncomforatble feeling that I may be buying the so-called fake type for double the price!

So anyway after dealing with computer stores, we made the obligatory stop over at Frankies for some ice-cream. It had been over a year since I last went to Frankies and I was left in shock when I saw that the price of 2 scoops of delicious home-made ice-cream had gone up dramatically. I wasn't sure if this was due to:
1. Sky rocketing fuel prices
2. World-wide increases in the price of basic commodities
3. Credit crunch and sub-prime mortage debacle
4. Stock markets crashing world-wide
These days things that happens in one part of the world has an effect elsewhere right? All about the Butterfly effect.

As I hobbled over to the door of Frankies something flashed before my eyes briefly to my delight....a vendor with The Wire DVD Season 4! Having watched Season 1 -3, I had been searching for Season 4.
So at last, I have another great way to procrastinate! I love this show. Apparently it is a bleak and realistic portrayal of life in Baltimore. It does raise some controversial questions about urban life in an American city where corruption, dirty politricks, poverty and a chronic drug problem all reign supreme.
One cannot expect any warm and fuzzy endings for any of the characters and the bad guys often win. Interestingly, some of the actors on the show are real former thugs and cops. I was really confused the first time I watched the show and one of the characters was called Jay Landsman and when the credits were rolling I saw that one of the actors was also Jay Landsman. I found out later that Jay Landsman was a decorated detective in Baltimore who the character Munch in Homicide: Life on the Street was modelled after. To make it more confusing, the real Jay Landsman also plays a cop in The Wire. One of the producers of the show who played a cop on the show and another actor who also played a cop both died while The Wire was being made. The other cops had wakes for both characters. Another actor Felicia "Snoop" Pearson uses her real name on the show. Apparently she was a former drug dealer and hoodlum. Basically, there are blurry lines between reality and fiction over at The Wire.


Nana Yaw Asiedu said...

Awwwww, Abby, I did not think it was that bad. Sorry, my friend. Just put up your foot and do some escapism with 'The Wire'.

Maya said...

Hey Abby,
Loving your blog! Can't believe I hadn't discovered it until now. Look forward to seeing you at the next meet up!

Abby said...

Yes, it was kinda bad last week but things are much better now. No hobbling but still insisting on flip-flops. The Wire escapism should have been on my prescription! Works wonders...

Abby said...

Thanks Maya! Digging your blog as well. I hope I can make it to the next meet up:)

Nanasei said...

I just read this post and had to comment... Sorry about your foot. I'm sure by now, you're all healed and strutting on mocassins around Accra.

I am a BIG "Wire" fan! I mean, having spent my late teens in and around Baltimore and watching the show when it ran on HBO infused a certain level of unexplainable pride in me. So I'm alway excited when I come across another "Wire" fan. Talking about former police officers acting in the series, Ed Norris, Baltimore's former Chief of Police was also a cast member. "The Wire" very well mimics life on the streets of Baltimore, hands down!

Abena Serwaa said...

Wow Nanasei, great to hear that you are a Wire fan with real life experiences of Baltimore! The thing I appreciated the most about the Wire was the gripping and unapologetic reality of the show. Strange thing is that I still haven't seen the final season even though I got it...