So, I have it on good authority that old Van has now officially been retrenched. No wonder we haven’t heard from him for so long.
I mean, there was a time when you couldn’t go to a rugby match or have a braai without hearing at least a handful of Van der Merwe jokes.
He was on TV at least once a week. And the radio … the radio people loved him. Now, nothing.
We were invited to a braai the other night at friends, and there was little Van. He gave us the inside scoop on what really happened to his dad. At first, he was a bit shy, but like his father he tends to open up a bit more with every double.
Now, I’m not convinced retrenching old Van was such a good idea. He is extremely well-travelled. I mean, who hasn’t heard at least one of the legendary stories about Van, the Englishman and the Scotsman, or about Van and the Irishman, not to mention Van and his frequent visits to the Queen.
Little Van says his father is taking the retrenchment in his stride. It’s this whole BEE-thing, says little Van. Everyone knew Van had to go eventually. And his successor, Sipho, is not doing a too bad job.
Little Van says his dad reckons Sipho is young and he has many miles to travel, so we must give him a sporting chance. After all, it’s not easy being the laughing stock of a nation. It takes time to truly establish yourself as the genial village idiot.
But here’s the juicy bit of the story: apparently Gatiep and Meraai are next.
Next to be retrenched, that is.
With all the political correctness which has now become law, everyone’s too bloody scared to tell a Gatiep and Meraai joke.
Little Van says Gatiep and Meraai are plain gatvol of this discrimination. Apparently, they say they weren’t white enough in the old SA, and now they aren’t black enough in the new one.
But Sipho got the job, and there’s nothing they can do about it. I just hope Sipho understands that we will never laugh at him. But hopefully he can get the entire country to laugh with him.