Meerkats love to perform; they love to show off. There is so much drama amongst a tribe of meerkats. Have you ever watched them on The Animal Planet? They hog the camera, they don’t give the poor hippos a chance !
A meerkat’s behaviour in the human world relates to me like a group of very similar looking girls consistently competing for attention, gossiping, sharing boys and they love the cameras.
Now I’m not going to lie. I did enjoy observing these groups in school, as they can be comical and the gossip and events occurring in these circles can spice up a rather mundane school day.
The gossip would be exciting to listen to…unless you were involved. If you were involved, it was stressful, getting into scraps with the meerkats is not fun, they are small but mighty and their words can hurt!
I’ve had a couple of interactions with the meerkats and let me tell you it was not pleasant.
One of my most memorable moments with them happened when I was in third year. I was a clueless fifteen year old, I was definitely a chameleon.
I felt I was chasing after friends. I guess subconsciously I envied the meerkats.
Once the scrapping was set aside, the meerkats appeared to be having fun and they had a high social ranking in the jungle.
Anyway, that’s beside the point, back to the story. I was trying really hard to be a part of the meerkats.
One day the leader of the pack, the leader changed regularly, however this day it was a certain meerkat let’s call her Red. Red scared me, Red was intimidating and at this time she was flexing her power in the gang. Red invited me over to sit with them. I was so surprised but excited. I was a little nervous as I joined them.
They were friendly, they were talking about class, boys, teachers, normal stuff.
Then they started to discuss the gossip from a recent party they were at, and the discussion started to progress into a coded conversation, I was there but not privy to the code words. The sniggers, the eye rolls, that sinking feeling of exclusion started to surface.
Luckily a friend rescued me from the situation by joining the group. The coded conversations got more animated. It was like they wanted us to hear the conversation, particularly when Red announced ‘Did you hear Rhino gave Blue COCAINE!’ . Blue was one of those meerkat’s that did everything the leader said. If Red said jump, blue would ask how high!
Hands up I admit I was a very innocent fifteen-year old. My jaw dropped…literally! A complete JAW DROP! I couldn’t have made it more obvious that I was shocked.. I’m an actor. I guess being dramatic is my job. Cocaine was what people smuggled on planes on the show ‘Nothing To Declare’…if caught they would be led away by the guards and thrown into jail. Cocaine at a fifteen-year old’s birthday party scared me.
My natural reaction was to nudge my friend next to me, and recount what I heard… She was oblivious to the conversation. I asked her ‘did you hear what I heard’, she was like ‘ no sorry I had my earphones in what did they say?’, I said they said ‘Blue did cocaine!’
The whispering campaign started, and it spread like wildfire about Blue’s wild night trying cocaine.
Rumours are like Chinese whispers, every time it is spread the story starts to alter.
Fast forward a few days. The meerkats were very excitable. Darting here and there, congregating in corners during PE. Then dispersing. Then a meerkat would scurry to Red updating her on the status of Blue’s rumour and they would congregate again. Gasps, high octane screeches, you name it the meerkat gang were on a high alert…There was a sentry meerkat scanning the halls for trouble. They were all becoming very territorial about Blue.
Red scurried over to me, gibbering manically…’Did you spread the rumour Blue did cocaine?????’
I said NO….I just repeated to my friend who was sitting with us what I heard YOU say!.
Red started ranting. ‘You know we only said that to test you!. We know you’re a snitch and we just wanted to prove it’. Blowfish decided to chime in (more about her in a later blog). She spurts “You have no right spreading lies about Blue’…At this point I was really confused. Then Ferret (again we will come across her in a future blog) goes ‘It was a test, see I told you she was a snitch’ at this point the meerkat gang surrounded me. My knees started to buckle and I collapsed onto the bench under me. I couldn’t get one word out. Tears started streaming down my face. They got closer and closer gibbering and screeching. To be honest , I can’t even remember what they were saying. Once they scattered, I ran to the bathroom and broke down. I just wanted to be friends with the meerkats, I just wanted to be included.
The realisation that they only invited me over so they could test me hurt. I ate my lunch in the bathroom for the rest of that week. I was so mortified and embarrassed.
The meerkat posse are full of drama, sticky boy situations and bitchiness. They thrive on pulling others down, whether by intimidation or by rumour. I learned they are not my type and more importantly rumours are dangerous, NEVER repeat what the meerkats say!