October is breast cancer awareness month
October is breast cancer awareness month

Weekend doctors!

Recently, I wrote that funerals-permitting, I start my Saturday mornings listening to Joy FM’s Family Affairs soon after the 6a.m. news up to 7.30a,m.

Then the comedy programme Weekend City Show takes over till 9a.m. The cast comprising the host and two actors are self-styled “weekend doctors” whose Mission Statement is;

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“To heal listeners through laughter and in the process bring down their blood pressures to the 120/80 doctors like!”

True to character, the programme on Saturday, October 8, 2022 lived up to expectation in treating the topic of Breast-Cancer.

Before discussing Breast-Cancer, who are the “cast” of Sammy Forson, Joseph Langabel and Rubbin Adarkwa?

Cast

The host, Sammy Forson, can easily be described as the first cast member of the trio by his interesting and humorous way of driving the programme forward as an “agent-provocateur!”

Born in 1981 in Zambia to Ghanaian parents, Forson returned to Ghana at age 16. After his secondary education at Swedru Secondary School, he studied at the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ).

Forson’s cast of two actors are the Ghana Black Stars Chief Drummer of the Cheering Squad, Joseph Langabel, and mobile phone dealer/repairer Rubbin Adarkwa.

In modern-day hi-tech English parlance, Langabel could be called a “Chief Acoustics Support Production Executive” of the Black Stars, while Rubbin would be a“Marketing/Technical Executive of Portable-Electronic-Equipment in the Digital Space!”

This is learning/borrowing from former receptionist metamorphosed to a “front desk executive” and a former garden-boy upgraded to a “tree-surgeon!”

Rubbin constantly reminds listeners that because he did not go to school, he married an educated lady who takes care of his educational needs. He came into the limelight through his hilarious antics in his first-hand account reporting the October 7, 2017 gas explosion disaster at the Atomic Junction, Accra.

Like Rubbin, Langabel’s education is rudimentary. His trademark signature statement of agreement is “thank you for the world so sweet!”

What the two men do not have in formal education however, they make up in wit and sense-of-humour. Indeed, they do not suffer from the inhibitions educated people do in trying to speak the Queen’s English impeccably.

The confident spontaneity of their answers to questions, be they right or wrong, has endeared them to many Ghanaians. Indeed, the host, Sammy Forson, does a yeoman’s job steering the programme, teaching the two not only correct pronunciation but also the meanings of words.

Lively calls-in by listeners spice up the show.

October 8, 2022

After telling them the significance of October 2022 as a Breast Cancer Awareness month, the host asked Langabel and Rubbin what breast cancer is. Langabel’s hilarious answer was, it is a “compound fracture in the breast!”

To the question on what they thought causes Breast Cancer, Rubbin opined that bleaching of the breast by some women as part of the general bleaching epidemic is one of the causes! Incidentally, his use of the word “bleaching” took me back to the lecture hall.

Over a decade and half ago, when I used the word in my class to describe the unfortunate phenomenon, a student of mine humorously told me

“General, you don’t say bleaching, you say skin-toning!” the class broke into laughter when I confessed that, in my old-fashioned ways, I did not know “bleaching” had been upgraded to a more politically correct term “skin-toning!” I told myself it is a fact of life that, the learning process has no end, not even for teachers.

Subsequently, I was relieved when a respected lady friend who has been in academia for decades told me, the “change in terminology is only intended to make a negative act increasingly more acceptable.”

Incidentally, a young woman who sat in front of me at a funeral service during the week in her bareback top, exposed a grizzly skin degradation similar to an aerial view of “galamsey’s” degradation of forest lands. As for the old retired bleachers, whose faces announce the effects of bleaching in their youth, I hope they advise young girls, and in some cases boys, not to do what they did in their youth.

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They certainly must be regretting their decision to bleach their bodies.

Discussion

As Rubbin put it, the breast is a delicate part of the female which must not be subjected to abrasive chemicals in the name of “skin-toning!” So-called skin-lighteners end up corroding the body like galamseyers are doing to our environment.

There is the need for the appropriate state institutions to educate Ghanaians out of bleaching. As Martin Luther King said, “Black is beautiful. I am black I am proud!”

For our ladies, please avail yourselves of breast-screening at any medical facility close to you. For those around Teshie, the Family Health University Hospital, opposite Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre offers free breast-screening every Saturday in October 2022 from 8am to 3pm.

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For the teeming numbers of unemployed graduates, much as I appreciate the problem of getting white-collar jobs our training has unfortunately conditioned us to expect, perhaps Rubbin and Langabel have demonstrated, that where there is a will, there is a way! Nothing good comes easily!

Ralph Waldo Emerson

I find the ability of Rubbin and Langabel as “weekend doctors” to help Ghanaians manage stress through laughter an impressive reminder of the American essayist, Ralph Waldo Emerson’s quote,

“If a man can write a better book, preach a better sermon, or make a better mousetrap than his neighbour, though he builds his house in the woods, the world will make a beaten path to his door!”

With virtually no formal education, Rubbin and Langabel have carved a niche for themselves through comedy, such that many educated Ghanaians “beat a path to their door,” early on Saturday mornings to listen to their hilarious Weekend City Show, ably driven by Sammy Forson.

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Leadership, lead! Fellow Ghanaians, wake up!

The writer is former CEO, African Peace Support Trainers Association, Nairobi, Kenya & Council Chairman, Family Health University College, Accra. E-mail: [email protected]

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