1. “Do you speak African?”
How anyone can get away with this in the 21st century is actually beyond me. Think of saying this to anybody from any other continent: Do you speak Asian? Do you speak European? Exactly, nobody says such asinine things about anywhere else. It’s nobody’s job but your own, to educate yourself.
2. “What’s Africa like?”
In theory, this isn’t a bad question but in practice you’re asking somebody to explain what 54 countries are like. I have a hard time explaining what the “United States is like” when I’m away. Do you really think I can tell you what 54 countries are like? Clearly, no.
3. “Do you have a pet [insert wild animal here]?”
I cannot even. In case you haven’t noticed, the only people who like playing around with animals are usually European and American visitors who see African countries as their personal hunting ground. I’ll save my rant on that for another day.
4. “Are there wild animals roaming in the streets?”
Yes, better bring your bow and arrow, they especially enjoy foreign meat! If you’re going to ask me stupid questions, you’re going to get stupid answers.
5. “Who is the president of Africa?”
Please I beg you, when in doubt, use Google. Repeat after me: Africa is not a country. Africa is not a country. Africa is not a country.
6. “Are there white people in Africa?”
Remember that really awful thing called colonization where western Europe thought they owned the world? Happened to us too! Some of them stuck around. They’re cool, most of us think they’re not any less African than anyone else; we just don’t get a kick out of how many got there.
7. “I know you’re from [insert African country here] but I know someone from [insert another African country here], do you know them?”
Did I mention that we have 54 COUNTRIES? Oh, let me guess you thought we all meet on some kind of connected bridge of some sort? Welp, sorry to disappoint you.
8. “Do you live in huts?”
You know as someone who has stayed in a hut a few times, those things are pretty rad actually. And given the climate of many African countries, they make perfect sense. That said, I know this may come as a surprise but Africans have real houses in real cities and towns and villages. I know, I’ve lived in, and been to a few.
9. “Do you wear clothes when you’re in Africa?”
No, we all just run around butt naked all the time! In fact, as soon as you get off a plane to every African country, you pretty much have to take off all your clothes. REALLY PEOPLE?!
10. “What’s it like living in the jungle?”
Don’t know who told you I lived in a jungle but I do know what they say about people who make assumptions…
11. “I went on an African safari, maybe we met then and we just didn’t know it.”
Yes, this actually happened. I just got up and walked away. Not even worth a sarcastic response.
12. “I’m so sorry about all the wars going on.”
Um, me too? I know a few non-African countries that had a hand in starting some of those wars. I also know a few non-African countries that always seem to be involved in wars away from their own land. But I’m not naming any names here.
13. “Did you ever go days without eating?”
Please just go and kick rocks. If you ate just one proper African meal, you’ll know the true meaning of food.
14. *Sings opening song from Lion King Song* “Do you know what it means?”
Well, like every person who wants to know something from a language I don’t speak, I ask somebody who speaks that language or I Google it. Incredibly amazing how that works!
15. “How did you get here?”
I swam. No really, you should try it some time. Because AFRICA DOESN’T HAVE PLANES OR ANYTHING! Just kidding, all Africans have wings. No seriously, we can actually fly. I’d show you but I don’t like to show-off.