Gather around everybody, I have a story to tell which I feel should be told in order to understand how we got here. Here are some of the reasons why Bob Mabena is a cultural stalwart.
There was a time when a radio DJ crossing over to television was unheard of. A time where the remnants of apartheid were so rife, you had to be grateful for what you have regardless of what other potential you might have. Men like Bob Mabena allowed their potential to flourish beyond the boxes our imaginations were comfortable in. Where today, being more than a DJ is logical. Today, if you aren't thinking of diversifying in the entertainment space you easily become ridiculed. Fair, everyone is diversifying for a cheque but there's that sincerity, curiosity, and care for what you are doing that Bob Mabena maintained. As a people, we haven't completely progressed to Bob Mabena's level of thinking. As a country, we romanticise the idea of racial tolerance and unity, but most of us haven't taken the step to walk in each other's shoes to understand what really makes us diverse.
Bob Mabena’s move to Highveld, and even motorsport racing was a move that symbolized his ability to diversify, because at the time it was a complete Afrikaner recreational sport. We are still stuck in the comforts of ourselves and our environment as Africans. Bob Mabena taught us that life is not about having the dopest verse on "Get Funky," or being the best driver in motorsports, but that life is meant to be lived, to the fullest. He showed us that we are more than the boxes apartheid declared upon us. He accepted the praises with grace, but he always knew that he was a vessel that amplified others' greatness.
Owning what we do and loving it was the Bob Mabena way, which a lot of us witnessed as fans. When we got the opportunity to shine, it was in our subconscious without us knowing who planted that seed.
The OG did his job and we are thankful!