Joseph Conrad’s Congo Revisited, The ‘Sugar Man’ & The Muhammad Ali’s ‘Rumble In The Jungle’  

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JD Morgan’s knowledge of The Congo, or Zaire, as it was known when he was growing up, was limited to that country’s brief appearance in Soccer’s 1974 World Cup, Joseph Conrad’s novella, Heart of Darkness and Muhammad Ali’s Rumble In The Jungle. Until, that is, JD shared a dormitory with African students in Istanbul. Then later in life, JD came across a Congolese man when teaching in prison from whom he learned far more about the Dark Arts, Black Magic secrets, superstitions and sacred beliefs of that country, when the ‘Sugar Man’ – as JD nicknamed him – would spend hours in the classroom relaying fascinating tales about his past adventures and travels in Sub-Saharan Africa. (3,500 words)

Description

‘What the bloody hell happened?’ He’s only just been allocated to my class and I haven’t even met him yet!’, I bellowed at one of my students. “I’m really sorry, JD, but I just had to do it!”, he replied. “He ‘jumped’ the dinner queue last night and pushed his way in – right in front of me! So I had to hit him!” ‘Hit him?’, I questioned. ‘You bloody near-on knocked him out from what I’ve been told!’ ‘No, JD! It wasn’t like that! It wasn’t that bad!’, continued the old lag, ‘I only jabbed him once with my left, then caught him with an uppercut and he just flew over the potatoes, past the peas and landed in the carrots!’ That was my introduction to a new student I hadn’t even met! But, I was keen to, as I’d heard he came from The Congo. In addition, and in his absence, I nicknamed him the ‘Sugar Man’, as, at that time, things in prison could get rough; so, I would accord any prisoner who’d lost a fight an esteemed nom de guerre, mainly as a means of boosting their confidence for the next time, should, indeed, there have to be another occasion!

I knew quite a lot about The Congo, which was called Zaire when I was growing up. It was a nation that had put itself on the world footballing map when it qualified for the World Cup in West Germany in 1974 and played against Scotland in Round 1, losing 2-0, and also suffered even more comprehensive defeats at the hands of Brazil and Yugoslavia. More importantly though, it was the country that hosted Muhammad Ali’s legendary Rumble In The Jungle (Kinshasa, October 30, 1974) against the hard-hitting and undefeated World Heavyweight Champion ‘Formidable’ George Foreman where, in Ali’s pre-fight words, ‘The King has returned to claim his crown!’, and the self-proclaimed, but ageing, ‘Greatest of All Times’ devised the rope-a-dope tactic, and then proceeded to knock out his exhausted opponent in Round 8. So, the then flat-footed, thirty-two-year-old ‘genius of the squared circle’ had regained his title, taken from him unjustly seven years’ before, and, subsequently, became the most famous man on the planet bar none – a boast which, for those who lived through those tumultuous times, as I did, could or would not contest. (Full story available for 99p using PayPal)

10 reviews for Joseph Conrad’s Congo Revisited, The ‘Sugar Man’ & The Muhammad Ali’s ‘Rumble In The Jungle’  

  1. Persia

    It was a great pleasure to read your work…. A new window to those places which are usually unavailable to the most of people…. It is fascinating to get acquainted with real daily life in prison and know about your experiences as a teacher…. Thank you for sharing.

  2. JB

    This tale is a patchwork of diverse snippets of information, covering The Congo, movies, boxing, witchcraft and more, all interwoven with the story of a very interesting character J D Morgan met in his classroom.
    Very few people can have, or have had, the kind of rapport he built with his students. Here you can learn about a very different life to the one most of us lead. Enjoy!

  3. DorriJ (verified owner)

    When you start reading this rip-roaring tale, make absolutely sure you have the time to finish it, since you won’t wish to put it down. The opening propels you headlong into a pacey portrayal of a life lived, as seen through the empathic perspective of J D Morgan.
    The Sugar Man’s story springs to life magnificently, in these 9 pages. Indeed, he feels larger than life, leaving the impression that, prisoner or no, his life as a human being is to wonder at and treasure. Meanwhile, the developing rapport between the Sugar Man, his tutor and the other students in the class is touchingly revealed along the way.
    Finally, J D Morgan’s roving intelligence, depth of knowledge and vivacious prose style will keep you entertained throughout – even if, like me, you’re no great boxing enthusiast!
    Thank you, J D Morgan.

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    • admin (verified owner)

      Thank you so much for your kind words.

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      Best wishes,

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      Thank you for taking the time to comment!

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