Every campus has that rasta who hogs the limelight for wrong reasons in “boys’ circles” but still manages to impress girls with his not-so-easy to ignore street charisma. He pretends like all is kept together but financially, socially, and spiritually he is in a mess.
The campus rasta is addicted to cool and he gets anything that is trending by foul or by fair means. On his phone, there are loads of downloaded images of celebrities who inspire his fashion sense. Rasta loves attention from girls, he needs to have something in his closet that can turn heads of students at the campus and become a subject of discussion in girls’ hostels. Although everything looks perfect in the eyes of the public, inside he is breaking because once you set a trend at the campus people expect you to take it a notch up again and you become a slave of their expectations. “Haa rasta smarts ramunozomborova so munenge muchipedzera madinga kunge kamwe kashwada kamunozombotsikirira kamwe so kakapenga manje. Rasta handirwadziwe nemi sando dzenyu torai idzo.” These are words of compliments showered on rasta every day and the message gets into his head so much that he is determined to work extra hard to break the set previous record.
Rasta is known by boys for borrowing clothes from his friends but most girls know him for the slaying. He requests to wear clothes from his friend’s closet when he has already fitted the clothes. He does not return the clothes borrowed without having the owner asking them back, to make the matter worse when you take back your clothes from him you find them unwashed or torn. “Ha sorry rasta ndandisina kuwacha but cloba rako iro riri dhaza pasi pemubhedha, ndichauya futi ndikuda ka cap yako yeRed yawaiva wakarova day riya reBash”. He bellows. Rasta is known for bad borrowing etiquette; he thinks that he is entitled to other student’s property. When he does not return borrowed items in time one would expect him to show remorse but he acts like there is nothing untoward about his behavior. He doesn’t greet people who rent him out clothes in public places acting as he owes them nothing in life.
Although rasta treats his friends unfairly who rent him out clothes, he can still come to them and ask for wardrobe help. He mastered the art of convincing people, he dares to debut your new clothes and make you wear them when he had already featured them. He takes unfair advantage of his knowledge of street philosophy to run rings around people when he is cornered when arguing with boys about his roguish conduct.
Rasta covets his peer’s super-style clothes. “Mukuona chii rasta pazvinhu zvacho, ndeimwe iyaya yekuti hoodie renyu ramakarova rofita vanhu vedzungu kunge inini, haride vanhu vanechihwayi hwayi, manje ndikarirova neshirt yangu yekalazi, pakosi ndopedza vana vese. Ndotora vana ndisina kana kutaura chinhu. Hembe ndodzinonyenga dzega.” He says. He thinks that he is the only one allowed to wear nice things and he talks about things he doesn’t have and magnifies the most insignificant things he has to make them seem more important. “Ndinako paden kadzinhi aka asi kungoti chete momz vakati ndisauya nako kuno kufazhi, unongoziva vana momz vanotyirwa kuti kanogona kugarirwa nevakoma ndikanyudzwa waiziva?” He brags.
There comes a point when it all becomes too much. When rasta’s friends get too tired to tolerate nonsense. The friends sit together to hatch a plan to give rasta an attitude so that he realizes that they no longer want to be friends with him anymore, but the moment he walks into the room he lights up the mood of his friends with his witty humor. “Boys rangu redhunanga bho here? Nhasi panga pakaipa, pane mwana andaona muLibrary mwana iyeyeka, ndopikira kumupa mari yangu yese yefees ini kuti ndive naye mubhokisi mangu. Ko isu tozivikanwa nekutora vana pakosi.” Everyone in the room laughs, before his friends know it they are sold to him again.
Rasta is broke all the time because he lives unbalanced financial life to please his slay queen girlfriend who has an insatiable appetite for all the fine things in life. To have extra money to spend, he has to cut out on money for meal tickets, instead of having three meals per day he is having only one meal per day. If you happen to bump into rasta and his girlfriend towards time for supper, then know that trouble is coming your way. “Huyai ka pano titaure rasta pane dhiri randikuda, honaka dhiri racho, I have got this thing going na bhebhi uyo akandimirira apo saka handisi kuda kuti azvinzwe, ndipowoka two matiketi ekuDH ndokukavha bag rako kana ndambo ngwavha ngwava nhasi, musatya rasta nhasi chaiye ndokuitirai bho bag renyu.” He whispers. In the eyes of rasta’s lover he is completely debt-free because Rasta hides his financial situation from his girlfriend, he only confides his unbalanced financial life to his friends who are quick to lend a helping hand in the name of “rastahood”.
Rasta has to lie all the time to keep the relationship with his girlfriend afloat. Imagine the stress he goes through weaving coherent fictitious stories, remembering every detail he says to make his stories appear real. Rasta has a myriad of social challenges that include denial, anxiety, debt, and inadequacy that exist below the surface. At the campus, he is caught in a cobweb of fake lifestyle that he needs to break free from but again his life situation requires him to have a mechanism he employs to protect his ego from the bruises of realities of his life.