Opinions of Sat, 12 Jan 20191

Men, gold and stories untold!

Today, the plan is to tell! Yes, tell all of a great story untold for many years. A lot of people will probably look at me differently from now on, I know, people generally don’t like ‘snitches’ (people who tell on others), except that I am actually not going to tell on anyone in particular. Identities will be concealed and probably mythical almost, but there is no uncertainty that I will tell it all.

A long time ago, there lived a man in a certain society. A closely-knit society it was, where everyone knew everyone, but everyone did not really know everyone. In many ways, this description of the society proved beneficial and suicidal to all and sundry, depending on which side of the equation one wanted to be at any point in time. This particular man I am going to snitch on chose a very interesting side, the side that many people dream of choosing but few actually manage to get on. And for the purposes of this article, I will choose to call him ‘MAN’, probably an initial of some sort.

MAN, at a point in time, had the opportunity to travel abroad for his studies. Due to how the society was, everyone knew about MAN’s sojourns into the deep to pursue knowledge hitherto unheralded. After a few years away in the west, MAN returned to a hero’s welcome back at home for he came with many things, not least, a big shiny yellow stone! Could that yellow stone be what everyone was thinking? Your guess is as good as mine!

News spread quickly around town that MAN was extremely rich for such big shiny yellow stones could only come into one’s possession unless he was swimming in some ridiculous amount of wealth. Some people described the shiny object with so much aggrandizement, others were in awe, so much so that one had to literally put their jaws back together for them. And then there were the other gifted ones, who even though had not seen the yellow stone for themselves, described it with so much precision that their words were so soothing to the ear, so much sweeter than any xylophone could ever produce.

MAN heard all these words about him and had grown amazed at his sudden celebrity status, almost god-like. There was no denying that he enjoyed it, after all, his great grandfather had told him countless times that it is only a fool who closes his mouth when honey is freely dropping. And so, the plan was to bask in all the glory, and oh, if a few fools could be made out in the end, so be it!

Soon, there were all sort of nicknames that accompanied the mention of his name. Names like ‘Goldie’, ‘MWG’ (Man With Gold), Nana k)k)) (King Gold), just to mention but a few. There is a particular one I seem to have forgotten….oh how could I have? It seemed to suggest that he was the one and only, none after him, none before him…MAN1? Maybe, maybe not. People, both young and old followed him everywhere he went, he was the new saviour, he would show mankind where to get such a big shiny yellow stone so that they could also wield as much power as he does, as much influence as he does and as much as ‘wealth’ as he does, at a small fee of course.

The baffling aspect was that the same people who wanted to be like him and worshipped him so much gave him everything he now seems to enjoy and flaunt. Willingly!, without him ever asking. All he did was show a handful of people his goodies from abroad, which happened to include a bright yellow stone. No questions were asked whatsoever what that was, a quick conclusion was made there and then! He was wealthy, that must be it, otherwise, he would not have in his possession such a precious metal! They wanted him to show them the path to such riches!

Except that MAN1 went to school to study Geology. Yes, geology, which generally had to with the study of rocks. Are we coming home now? Well, I never joined the bandwagon because I did one simple thing, I asked MAN1 what the shiny big yellow rock was and he told me what it was. Yes, he did. He didn’t tell the others because they assumed what it was, got excited and paid a fee to also get same, a fee which was nowhere near the actual value of the yellow rock he had.

And so what did he tell me it was? It was pyrite, a very common mineral which has a yellowish metallic look, commonly mistaken as Gold! He laughed as he went on explaining it to me. He continued by saying that in class, his lecturer had told him that pyrite had another name, a name that would probably hurt a lot of his followers. Pyrite, wait for it, is also known as ‘fool’s gold’!! Who said it was only Aurum Utalium that could pass as fake gold…..tweaaaaa!

Columnist: Victor Tandoh

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