What is an adult?


This past weekend I joined hundreds of other middle class Lusakans in our weekly money liberation ritual. We converged at the city’s most popular spot where the drinks are expensive but the staring is cheap.  The deejay subjected us to the same music he has been playing the past six months and the proletariat were overjoyed! It was the best of times; it was the worst of times. Sitting there celebrating the return of another glorious member of the diaspora I contemplated my resemblance to the furniture around me.  As I signalled nods of acknowledgement at familiar faces and hugged the same women I met last week, a tingle in my pancreas manifested. This overdue tingle was the realisation of the death of excitement. I realised that magicians were not going to make a spontaneous appearance. Indeed, Sisqo was not going to pass by and bust a few moves. It was just me, us, giving that cool mafia type money in order to remind our fellow proletariats that we were still employed.  Do you smack a chill?


Recently, the stars aligned and Zeus himself delivered a true goddess among women to become my girlfriend. She has the beauty and confidence of an albino tigress wistfully strolling through the Zambeef headquarters in Chisamba. In my spare time I slap myself in an attempt to re-examine the reality of my fortunate circumstances. Anyway, this being having lived most of her life outside the auspicious parameters of the great Zed has exposed me to the world of travel and planning. You see, my default response to what’s for the weekend used to be ‘’I don’t know’’ which is essentially code for the discotheque. But now when my queen from somewhere near queens asks me this question I have to think up something interesting or feign depression as a way out.  I have visited art galleries, played board games, attended birthday dinners, participated in entrepreneurial forums under the careful supervision of the aforementioned. Is this why my regular patronage of the ‘’coolest places’’ seems to be dwindling? To an extent, another compelling reason is that I’m 27 years old; I’m effectively playing hopscotch between the kid’s box and the adult one. I’m fucking getting old man. This reminder of my status in society led me to explore the term ‘adult’, what is an adult, what does this animal entail?


Well, it seems that according to my Webster’s dictionary an adult is a mature person. I don’t find this definition particularly useful as I cannot tell whether such a designation is rendered on account of physical development or otherwise. However, assuming that the definers (did you also read defilers? wink wink) meant well I take it they intended to be as comprehensive as possible.  I really hope they did, because there are so many things that confuse me about being an adult.

For instance, am I an adult because I have my own house, car a wife and offspring? Do the structures created by society make me an adult? This is disregarding the fact that most Zambian people do not enjoy what they spend 8 hours of their day doing. Does having stuff make me an adult?

Secondly, does the dispensation of unsolicited wisdom qualify me as one? I wonder. A lot of Zambians (me included) will regurgitate some clever theorem at the drop of a pin when an acquaintance seems disheartened by their foul circumstances. Does it make me an adult if I know a bunch of things?


At this point you are wondering where this article is going, well it has arrived. Being an adult is something that fascinates me and I would appreciate your input on this issue. Help me understand this seemingly abstract concept; show me the true path to adulthood. Help me reach an understanding, otherwise I might keep making shrewd foreigners rich and in turn frustrate my Athena, help me.

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9 thoughts on “What is an adult?

      1. I think so. We need to ignore conformity and embrace individualism. Teach people to respect themselves and others. In such cases age is nothing but a number.

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