The utaka that I know is the type of fish whose appeal reigns across all social classes. It is the kind of fish that when you roast, the whole neighbourhood knows about it.
Â Even those that have mastered the art of visiting friends during lunch or supper timeâ€”as was the case with a pastor in last weekâ€™s Ayobe cartoon stripâ€”realise it is time to drop in.
While the lower social classes might love utaka because of its affordability, the higher classes in Namiwawa and Area 10 will love it for its ability to heal taste buds laden with hangover.
Utaka is one of the dishes every Malawian loves for one reason or the other, but there is another utaka for which I have a strong reason to hateâ€”Nigeriaâ€™s battle-hardened forward John Utaka.
He might be coming with Nigeriaâ€™s Super Eagles this week for Saturdayâ€™s 2014 World Cup qualifier against my beloved Flames.
And what quickly comes to mind for Malawian soccer lovers is how he punished the Flames in 2003, when he scored the lone goal in a World Cup qualifier, silencing a capacity Kamuzu Stadium.
If Utaka is in the team that is coming for Saturdayâ€™s encounter, then I am sorry to say this time we will â€˜roastâ€™ him in the Flames that are Limbikani Mzava, Robert Ngâ€™ambi and Joseph Kamwendo.
After all, who the hell are the Super Eagles anyway? Fear not Malawi, fear not our gallant Flames, fortune favours the brave and names alone should not strike fear in our hearts. We have to believe in ourselves. Belief brings confidence and this, in turn, nurtures success.
Come on guys, Nigeria is now known for those diminutive actors called â€˜Aki na Ukwaâ€™ and not football. They are no longer the Super Eagles that we knewâ€”and probably grown to love and respectâ€”as they danced their way to the Africa Nations Cup glory in 1994. They are now an ordinary team â€”no one with the magical touch of Jay-Jay Okocha and none with the finishing artistry of Odemwingie.
May be we should now call them â€˜Supperâ€™ Eaglesâ€™, and not Super Eagles.
â€˜Ngalande and Nyondoâ€™ sounds like a law firm, doesnâ€™t it ladies and gentlemen? Let them bang goals on Saturday! Go Flames! Go!