JAMB UTME - Use of English - 1983

Question 1 Report

Typical Zacharia! Devil-may are and irreverent as ever. No doubt he was just the same when he was cook to a Greek trader in the town. In fact, I suspect that to him the Reverend Father is just another sort of trader. Conceited ass, thinking himself superior to the Father! And in what is he superior? Success with women perhaps? Zacharia knows that they all admire him and is always striving for still more admiration. He dresses sharply and walks in a haughty manner that suits in his tallness. And then he feeds his pride on the swarms of girls who run after him. It’s maddening to him how little you need to attract them. I remember my mother coming home from market in the town, after selling her vegetables and cocoa. How indignant she was ‘It’s so shameful, ‘she cried,’ our best-looking and most respectable girls go to town and throw themselves at strangers as ugly as sin, speaking the most outlandish tongue. Men I can scarcely look at without shuddering! And why? Just money! Money! Ah, what a world! And my father replied in a buried voice, ‘It is the times!’ ‘the times!’ shouted mother ‘can you imagine my child Ann with creatures like those?

But perhaps the girls who chase Zacharia aren’t drawn by his tallness or his leather shoes. Perhaps they’re only after childish things, a bit of bread or a pot of jam, knowing that he’s a cook. My father often says women are like children in their desires. And after all, I too can boast a little. Plenty of women turn to look at me, especially when I’m dressed all in white! But I’m not vain enough to fuse over a little thing like that. Not like Zacharia, who doesn’t know women are simply children.

The speaker's mother considered that