Life after the showerhead

Some of Zapiro’s handcrafted collectible figurines of his most popular political caricatures.

Things are not going to be easy for cartoonists when Zuma and his cronies go.

Right! Order! Order! Order!…’ “Mine’s a double whisky!”

The chairperson shook his head in desperation. Getting this lot to focus was like herding cats or being sent out to collect rocking horse poo …

“This Emergency Meeting of the Comedians and Cartoonists Guild of South Africa will now begin,” he shouted.

The murmuring died down a tad. “This meeting is to discuss the current crisis in government and what we can do about it…”

At the back, a hand shot up. “Hey bru! How about this one? It’s a bit old, because I stole it from Ronnie Corbett, who was one of the classic gag men of all time…”

The chairperson shook his head. Could these people not take anything seriously?

“Okay, bru…so there’s been a government survey just released which shows that President Jacob Zuma has been doing the work of two men during his time in office … Beavis and Butthead!”

When the chuckles had subsided, the chairperson resumed: “Everybody, please take this seriously, because what is happening in the government could seriously affect our ability to earn a living … and not everyone here will be a Trevor Noah. True story …”

There were nods from some in the room. “Later this week, people, we could be scratching for work. Jacob Zuma will either step down or be forcibly removed as president …”

A voice piped up: “Zapiro, boet, you’re gonna have to retire that showerhead!” The cartoonist nodded in sad agreement.

The reality began to sink in: Not only was Zuma a walking punchline, his head was a prefect target for cartoonists.

“It’s not going to be that funny ripping off an old doddery bugger walking around his cows.”

Another hand went up: “Hang on! What if he’s a doddery old bugger wearing orange, Correctional Service overalls?”

A frisson of excitement went through the audience. Ja, maybe … but for how long?

The chairperson said: “It’s not just Zuma, guys. When he goes down, it’ll be like the Titanic – everything close by will be sucked down!”

As that thought was absorbed, someone else chipped in: “You’re right bru! What are we going to do without Bathabile Dlamini? Colonel Brian Molefe? Lynne Sitting-in-the-Brown-Stuff?”

And, what about Dudu Myeni, Matshela Koko, Mosebenzi Zwane…

“AAARGH man! Where are we gonna find another pair of caterpillar eyebrows if Shaun Abrahams heads for the sheep pasture? Sorry… couldn’t resist that …”

Someone else realised: “What about Atul’s Nasty News? They’re going to be history too … where else are we going to find those funny news ribbons at the bottom of the screen?”

As they discussed the imminent disappearance of the “Oros Man” (ANC Youth League’s Collen Maine) from the public stage, someone said: “It’s not so bad people, ‘Mbaks’ is still around … and where in the world does a police minister start calling himself ‘fearfokol’, except here?”

Someone else interjected: “Okay, bru, we know Fikile Mbalula has given us plenty of jokes … but sometimes pathetic is just not funny.”

The meeting agreed that Cyril Ramaphosa is too determined to be funny … and there’s a limit to the number of buffalo gags you can pull off.

As everyone filed out of the door, they collected American immigration applications. Trevor can do it … and besides, that oke in the White House is heaven-sent for comedians.

Citizen acting deputy editor Brendan Seery.

Citizen acting deputy editor Brendan Seery.

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