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SUNDAY SAUCE:'Cake' soap

Published:Sunday | January 23, 2011 | 12:00 AM

Oxy Moron, Contributor

Yesterday, August Williams' mother, Jackie, searched the entire house for the bar of blue washing soap she had bought two Saturdays ago. August was at extra lessons, his father was out playing Saturday morning football and had left his phone at home, so Jackie couldn't get any assistance in finding the soap. Time was going and she was very anxious. There was washing, cleaning, hairdresser, cooking, etc. to get through. She even went for her supermarket bill to see whether she had actually bought the soap. And she had, so where was the soap?

It was nowhere in sight, so she put the whites to soak, with the intention of buying another bar of soap on the way from the hairdresser's. The missing soap had put her plans for the day in disarray, but that was it. She milled around and did some other chores, hoping that she would happen upon the soap somewhere in the house. At about 11 o' clock, August's father, Peter, returned. He walked right through the living room in his dirty football boots and headed straight for the kitchen where cornmeal porridge was on the stove. He yelled to Jackie.

"Pour it out yuself!" she shouted back.

She was now in August's room cleaning and putting it in order. That itself was going to take some time. Two weeks ago, it was cleaned, but boys will always be boys and August was a normal boy. Or so they thought. He was brilliant and 'boasy'.

Teachers complained to his parents about his arrogance, but August contended it was confidence. At age 12, about to do his GSAT, he had the world to conquer, and there was nothing that was going to stop him. His friends called him 'Extra August', but they like him. He was sociable and very kind. But one day, last week, Mark, his best friend noticed that August's face was a little 'whitish'. "You a powder, you a girl?" Mark teased. "No man, yuh crazy, yuh don't see is soap a wash ma face with," August retorted, and the matter was laid to rest, for then.

Back in August's room, Jackie was toiling away. She was going through August's regular schoolbag. He had brought the string-bag to classes that day. His schoolbag always had dirty socks and games clothes, and all sorts of sweets and biscuit wrappings. Jackie went into the side compartment and saw a soap dish. A puzzled look was on her face. Strange. She didn't know that August took soap with him to school. She took it out and quickly opened it. And there it was! Her bar of blue washing soap. Well, half of it. It was used.

Jackie shouted, "Peter, Peter!", rushed out of the room with the bag, going through it in the process, and headed towards the dining room. When she pulled out a piece of newspaper with the picture of a pale-faced man, she quickened her pace, and raised her hand with the soap to the ceiling.

Meanwhile, Peter was enjoying his porridge and watching TV. Jackie appeared in front of the TV with the soap in the dish. Peter, asked, "What that fah?"

"You need to ask yuh son!"

"My son?"

"Yes, August Williams!"

"But,"

"But I am not done yet."

As Peter stared at her, Jackie slowly put the news tabloid page down on to the table beside the bowl of porridge. Peter sat up and braced against the chair. It was now his time to open his eyes widely, as he stared at the picture of the very popular DJ who had allegedly bleached his face beyond recognition.