Monday, April 21, 2008

Zimbabwe No-Brainer

From the fine (yet likely miserable) folks over there at, a crocodile's brain was stolen. That is correct, the brain of a crocodile. Stolen. Yet that's not as shocking as the rest of the story.

The police are looking for someone who killed the crocodile and removed it's brains. Apparently the brains can be used to poison unsuspecting individuals (as it is hard to poison a suspecting individual due to their unwillingness to be poisoned). The crocodile was at a coal mining company (I don't recall seeing coal in the Florida swamplands. Why do crocodiles in Zimbabwe live around coal?) and so the Hwange Colliery Company Risk and Control Department (which is where they hide their security guards) has asked residents of the area to promptly report any cases of a) food poisoning and b) someone found in possession of crocodile brains. (I would have directly copied the text from the article and quoted it, but Zimbabwe's news in English isn't spelled all that great, as their publication stated for people to report "any person found in position of crocodile brains". So if you see a guy sitting in the empty cranium of a crocodile, quick, call the Colliery!)

Now it isn't clear if the brain was taken for some sort of ritualistic purpose of if was taken for the purpose of poisoning people. (The thief or thieves did not leave a note.) The
crocodile brain is regarded as highly toxic (hence, why it makes a really good poison) and in some rural cultures it is used by some "unscrupulous individuals to lace foodstuffs with the intention of killing their victims." (I don't know which part of that I find more amusing. The "foodstuffs" part (It's stuff we eat. Food stuff!) or that they felt the need to point out that individuals who will lace said "foodstuffs" with the intention of killing the hungry victim are "unscrupulous individuals." Definitely a toss up on that one.)

But it's not just foodstuffs you have to be careful of not getting a crocodile brain elixir slipped into when you're out of the hut. That's because many beer drinkers in Zimbabwe have been killed through binging on beer that has been laced with the toxic brain-o-the-croc. Along with the brain, a crocdile's bile is said to also be "highly devastative" to humans and animals if eaten or otherwise consumed. So crocodile brains and pancreas, off limits!

And now, here is where the really shows off their media reporting diversity. This informative article concludes with, "The crocodile tail and meat are consumed as a delicacy, which can be roasted, fried, grilled or deep-fried, while the legs and some of the body parts are best stewed, as is done in West Africa. " Nice! An entire article about the toxicity of the innards of large reptiles and they bring it all together with a few cooking tips! Are you sure you guys don't want to throw in some Hints from Heloise as well? Miss Manners? Dear Abby perhaps?

Ah, I guess I shouldn't be picking on Zimbabwe. They have way too many other things to worry about. Below are all of the headlines that were on the side of the webpage story about the croc noggins. They're very brief and very depressing. Nonetheless, I am still very curious as to what a mealie-meal is. Stay tuned, won't ye? U-S-A! U-S-A!
  • Man dies mysteriously
  • Uncle (54) rapes niece (18)
  • Vote recounting kicks off
  • MDC-T to surrender national assets to UK and USA
  • Minister warns opposition
  • ANC shoots down Tsvangirai call
  • MDC thugs unleash terror on ZANU-PF supporters
  • Mealie-meal supplies to improve
  • Indigenisation Act now operational
  • City council repossesses stands
  • Manhunt launched for killers
  • Learn more about EPAs
  • Skeletal remains found in Park
  • Govt seeks alternative sources of fuel
  • Man up for attempted rape
  • One dies as mine collapses
  • Pregnant woman forced to drink raw sewage
  • Clinics see red

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Anonymous said...

mealiemeal = maize flour
Not all english is american english

Anonymous said...

actually mealie meal is not maize flour, it is in fact maize porridge!

Anonymous said...

who ever wrote that comment above is a little piece of shit! mealie meal is ground maize (corn) into a medium fine powder which is cooked and eaten with relish as you eat rice! i know i have it every day! stupid idiot!