Dear Mama, 14 years later

Dear Mama,
Hi Mum. It 14 years since you left. 14 long years. 14 long damn years. They said that time heals. They lied. Believe you me. We never healed. It still hurts so much. It still disturbs us why at 34, still young and full of life you had to die.

 

14 years without using the word Mama…The loveliest name, word, term on earth…It lost meaning long time ago…Mama, how did you expect us to get by without you? The bond we had formed the three of us was the tightest, yet you chose to go…That was unforgivable. That was embarrassing. Being an orphan at 11 ain’t funny. You should have known better…How were we to answer to fellow pupils and students at school when they asked what our parents did for a living…

 

C’mon being an orphan, everyone looks at you suspiciously. How unlucky can a kid be? How did they die? An accident, some could ask…And when they learn it wasn’t an accident, they run out of options and  unsatisfactorily keep quiet, wishing they could know more but what can I tell them? That you fell sick on a Thursday and died on the following Wednesday?…Some I can read their minds. They mentally question…AIDS?But they can’t bring themselves to ask. AIDS is still a big deal. Some blame it on witchcraft, but I have always had my reservations.

 

It is difficult mum. So much that I spent nearly all my time talking about my foster mother…to which I consistently felt that I was doing a great disservice. Most of my friends have come to know my unenviable status rather late, when I could no longer be embarrassed and full accepted your permanent departure from this place they call earth.

 

14 years. How time flies. The day you went is clearly etched on my mind. It was Wednesday. Market day. Ordinarily you were supposed to join the hordes of women traversing the dusty road that always came to life on Wednesday as they went to sell their wares in the open market, arguably the largest in those sides that brought the Luos and the Kisiis together.

 

But on this day, 29th January, 1997, you kissed the world good bye. Why. They came to pick me from school at 6.57 am. I had scarcely settled for the morning prep when the teacher we had nick-named Makweri( coincidentally Kisii plural deaths) came for me and handpicked me yet we had never interacted. I knew something was incorrigibly wrong.

 

I carried the wooded box that you had just bought for us, a sign of prestige in the mundane village and walked the few yards towards home. I couldn’t cry. I was too young to understand, but I knew things were never going to be the same again. Tears dried up in my glands. I gave up. The sight of people rushing to our compound weeping, mourning, crying was too much for me to bear. They looked at me with those pitiful eyes. In deed mum, I must have been pitiable. Your lone son, no father or mother to look up to…

 

I was helpless. Hapless.  I was defeated. I was down. I still fault you dying at dawn. I mean, you should have gone in the evening if you had to go so that the night will at least absolve part of the pain. That was the longest Wednesday of my life. The relatives wept. Friends cried. The community mourned. They all loved you. You were one of a kind. And to us one in a million. The community adored you.  You exemplified humility and proved the value of hard work. You were widowed when you were too young but you could put two and two together to get four. You gave us the best. Taught us the best. Mum.

 

The last day we had conversation, you were too sick and going down. You insisted that you cook for us, Ezinah’s insistence fell on deaf ears…Like intuitively you knew that you won’t be with us for long. That Wednesday evening. On Thursday you lay prostrate on bed the whole day. You didn’t even raise your head once. I was young yet I knew that something was exceptionally wrong. In the evening, they checked you into Kendu Bay hospital. And that was the last I ever saw of you.

 

Mum, the next time I saw you, you were bundled in some wooden box that they use to carry mortals to the other world. You looked bitter Mum. Why. You looked sore and sour. Why. You looked eager. Why. It is like you died before saying something very important…Show me a sign please Mum. We surrounded the coffin and the piercing cry was too telling. It was too sudden a death. They hurried your funeral. The bitterness was too palpable. Flagrant. Your brothers and sisters were bitter. They wanted out of that place as fast as possible. It looked foreign. Strange. No peculiar is strong enough.

 

Mum, I thought that I had been left to fend for myself and I had a blue print with me. How I was going to tend to the farms and be a real man. After all, I had been circumcised and much was expected from me. At 11. After the mourning period, people only passed to say Hi and console me and my sisters. But how do you console an 11 year old who doesn’t understand what death is…

 

Later, Irene and Ezinah did come for me and we bade a place we had called home for 5 years bye, and it seems forever.
So Mum, I’m sure you would like to know how the 14 years have been.

 

Well, I know you have the time, lemme try as much as possible to put the record straight. The 14 years have been uneventful, eventful, dramatic, frenetic, frantic, quick, slow, happy, sad, bad, good, ugly and all that. Your brothers and sisters did pick us and gave us all the parental love as humanly as it is possible. To the best of our abilities they educated us, took us through good schools and have invested heavily in our education. I will be finishing campus this year and I’m inviting you to my graduation. Mum, haki si you can sneak in?, I did it for you. Ezinah too should be seated by me…What a wonderful day it will be?

 

We have  had our disagreements as expected. Sometimes we could be chased to nowhere. Sometimes we got unfair treatment, but we learnt to live with it. The incompleteness. Sometimes we looked up to the sky, crying searching for someone to call Mum, but you were nowhere to be seen. Sometimes we nearly gave up. I must confess, twice I wanted to commit suicide. Twice I wanted to walk away to God knows where, but it took Rosaliah(I believe you have met her there) to seat me down and whack some sense into me. I was young Mum, you should not  be offended.

 

Many a time, I pulled my hair in vain. Many a time I lost my cool, but I kept my eyes on the Prize. I passed my KCPE and KCSE respectively. I know you would have loved that…won’t you? In campus, I hope I will make it. For you I will. Mum I will. Take my word.

 

Your brothers, especially Ken and Richard sacrificed a great deal to ensure that I was in school. Even when I didn’t get the correct marks, Richard dug deeper to ensure that I go through University education. Ken too has been like the father I never had. Lovely, caring, funny to a fault, always wishing me all the best. But it is your elder sister who has played the role of Mother. She has scored well. In retrospect I give her 99 %. She has been supportive and her wisdom has been phenomenon. Lately, I can’t seem to do anything without her approval. She is such a lovely woman.

 

And her husband?Whoever said that angels don’t exist? He always believed in me. Always had the best of intentions for me. He never spared the rod and constantly reminded me that only University education could save my ass.

 

When I was in class six, the first term’s mid-term break, I was position 5. He held my head and told me, “Gisiora, you don’t belong to position five.”Mum that is one of the most touching statement in my life. I had been in the boarding school for just a year and my self-esteem was at its lowest. It must have God, for the next examination, I was position one and I stayed there and I strived to be among the best. Smile for me Mum…Please.

 

My cousins have been exceptionally good. Shylock inspired me to work hard and follow his footsteps. Wycliffe has always taught me how to be a man and often a believer of my scribership. The rest have equally been supportive more than you can imagine.

 

But more importantly, my two sisters have been the shoulders that I have always leaned on. In my campus life, Ezinah performed your role just perfectly. She is the one I often turned to when I ran broke. The one I have often cried to when the going got tough. A wonderful woman she has been. Irene got it a little tough and rough but she will be fine.

 

I went into writing, hence this long treatise. You will proud for me. I broke, literally into all the major media houses and I have been published in many enviable spaces. I have God to thank for my beginner’s luck. It has stood me in good stead grace. My first book will be dedicated to you. Your spirit fuels my life daily.

 

But there many things your death taught me. People are actually afraid of death and many do not know how to handle death when he visits. Some are shocked beyond recovery. Some do not understand the unfair selection of death. They call him the grim reaper who reaps where he didn’t sow. Some have never understood the timing of death. It is always ill. Many have never understood how to comfort or console the bereaved. Some think people like us are jinxed. Some deem us unlucky. Some think death is self-inflicted. Some even poke fun at death. How callous? Those who lose parents  who are bread winners, almost invariably lose their marbles. It becomes the end of the road. The clichés have been overused. But we learn to get along with them.
I miss you like crazie. Come Saturday it will be 14 years. Kids named after you are now big women. Every time I have tried endearing them,calling them fondly the way our old men used to do it, it falls flat, for they do not know the sentimental attachment I have to your name Norah…

 

But we all big now and we can make…We only ask a little favour of you…keep on smiling down on us…we like it. We cherish it. Say Hi to the folks already there. Miss you MUM…

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A toast to the women we loved and those we lost

GUEST COLUMN

By PO Oduor


This week, The Standard writer, poet and short story writer Peter Oduor is our guest writer,  he waxes poetic on the women we love but most of the time, we keep losing them…



The wrong man is speaking here today, if you may, lend him an ear for a moment or so then we can all salute the women we loved and those we lost.

Passing, paced up, fleeing, and flying; that is what life is to us. Women come into the lives of men and bring along with them love or some other feeling I do not really know about and before you know what hit you, they are gone like January showers, leaving you cold and shivering. Some pass you standing there like you are a bad signpost and go on with their journey.

 
Shall I confess a few things, not secrets so don’t get all edgy, shall I confess a few things, on behalf of fellow men, so ladies if you are listening, this is for you; love can meet men on the road and say it is love and men will still not know, treating you well is something we really honor, we mostly think about it, not do it. Forever for you and me-us -can be as abrupt as a falling dry tree branch, not your ever after. And sometimes when we say we forgot, we actually forgot, such instances though are very few. Flowers grow in the gardens but sweet words we can speak. Sometimes.

We have rumbled before women and knelt before others, we have gallantly triumphed over women and been dragged on the ground by others, we have spoken till words that came out seemed not ours but from another man in us, to be listened to and dismissed with a shoulder shrug, we have been listened to with effects we knew not words could bring.

To the women who took their lives and thought they could share it with us, my head is bowed and I am kneeling, touching your feet (don’t let that get into your head), to the women who felt their life was too private to share with us my head is bowed, but I am standing touching your head (don’t let that get you on your feet).And to the women who have little substance and feel themselves self full, fuller than a mad man’s bag, hear me –oh- sweet one , that you look thus.

Look up a little bit, ye women who took us in when we looked sham and wham bam and put some life into our wilting souls, covered us with warmth of soft fluffy feathers, relaxed our muscles and gave us renewed hope every time we fell, maybe we never said it to you but here now I speak; you are like none on earth, so wonderful God should make you an angel, so beautiful you can not fit human description , so wild a flower that sings wild, blissful sweet tunes that you alone an compose.

But now you are gone and that way it has to stay. But one last thing…

When you meet me on the streets today, do not look at me with piercing eyes that want to know what I am going through. When you smile at me along the way, do not warm my heart with your sunny mien that knows not what darkness I am going through. When you talk to me today, do not let your words tumble out of your mouth like big yellow oranges rushing from a fallen basket, words that have energy about them, energy that shadows me. When you touch me today, do it not like yesterday when your fingers would slide over mine and rest in knowing comfort of the warmth and softness of my palm, do it in the manner of a guest, a visitor, quick and brisk, save me the agony of feeling your touch. When you embrace me today, in a warm hug ;do it not like the old times when you would slide into my arm the way a key slides into a well oiled lock, do not hold me tight for you will leave your sweet fragrance on my shirt and turn my head into a building on fire, do not, my dear, bring your cheeks so close to my ear, oh dear, for I will hear our silent whispers of our now unspoken lovely past and that will ache my heart to no end. Mercy me, my once and once only, when you lean your head close to my nose yet you know too well what the smell of your hair does to me, how breathing will become to me a task and my mind a flight will take. When you meet me today, dear lovely, meet me like we are ships on the mad raging waters of the ocean, wave at me if you may, honk if you can but please make it brief and painless.

Give me room to forget about you, and pretend not, that you have forgotten about me.

Cheers to the women we loved and those we lost.

PS: You can catch more of this poetry on http://peteroduor.wordpress.com/2011/01/21/metamorphosis-the-art-of/

My best 30 this month

My top 30 best ever songs
Some little trivia to wind up the week. These is the collection of the songs that if I was to be locked in some Island in the Pacific, I will request for. I can play them back to back to infinity. They are a collection of as many genres as possible. Here we go
30. That is what friends are for-Dionne Warwick, Steve Wonder, Gladys Knight & Elton John(Soul)
Anyone who values friendship must surely love this song. The instrumentals are just out of this world. The vocals, you aint gonna find them anywhere in one song.
29. Usiibe-Them Mushrooms(Zilizopendwa)
This used to be my old man’s favourite.Reminds of the days when KBC was the only radio we knew. Anyone who remembers, Kahawa Wiki hii and Janja na janjaure?Or salamu za vijana na Kijana wa kazi Peter Kimeu, he of knowing greetings in all languages. Charles Omuga Kabisae? Jack Oyoo Silvester, who ever heard of a Luo, who is flawless in his Swahili. Can someone please tell me where Nick Okanga Naftali is?
28. Never make a promise- Dru Hill(Bluez)
I always loved Boy Bands. I always regretted wherever they broke up. I never quite forgave Sisqo or Justin Timberlake or Marques Houston for pulling out Dru Hill, NSYC and Immature respectively. On this track, the Dru Hill were possibly at the mature best. The lyrics, the voice fusion will possibly groove your way into her arms, yet again.
27.I’m Trapped-Colonel Abraham(Soul)
This is one of those rare tracks. You get yourself nodding your head agreeably to everything. The funky beat that later helped Rick Astley Never gonna leave you, or together forever is both danceable and the ultimate club heat for those of us aging.
26.Nako mola Afula-Madilu System(Lingala)
I loved this song in class three. I don’t even know whether that is its right name. But never quite got over it.
25. Chocolate High-India Arie &Music Soulchild (Neo Soul –R& B)
When these two respected names got together, one automatically expected a hit. My buddie, Jowizy believes that they under delivered. But I insist that they got everything right, from the lyrics their vocals and even the beat.

That nerve wracking Pregnacy call

The P-call
If there is one call that any man who is not a father dreads most is the news that some girl somewhere has missed her periods and thinks that he can help her understand the situation.

First, I can’t remember the last time that was welcome news. It is the most ill-timed news existent in the world. Invariably for many a college boy, such a call happens when you have Kshs 333 in cash and about 217 in MPESA. Secondly it always coincides with some other parallel issue that is important but doesn’t have the urgency of the pregnancy news.

Anyway, for the men who sleep around inevitably, they must receive the call. There is so much sexual indiscretion among the newly graduated teenagers and even amongst adults. The call always comes like this…
SHE: Hey, how are you…(Unmistakably very low in tone, there is something foreboding about it.)
HE: Wassup Honey? You sound so low…what is going on…(Confidently but deep within the alarm bells are deafening..this might be a break up, or some really disturbing news)…
SHE: No, nothing much…I just don’t know but I was expecting to roll  jana but it seems I have missed…
HE: (The man sees black if it is day time and white if at night…some little hesitation as he searches something relevant to say…he sweats) Are you sure, may be they are just irregular…But we used a CD?
SHE: (She sobs), That is what I thought, did it burst?(GENUINELY SURPRISED)
HE:I don’t think so, on that I’m pretty sure(more sobs can be heard on the other end).Well let us see how we can go about it. He hangs up first.

The man first curses the very act. Most of the time, it is one of those unnecessary encounters. I still hold this nonsensical assumption that we are all products of accidental sex. It could have been avoided. If he never used a condom, he will curse why he never strolled a few meters down the road and get the rubber. If it happened under the influence of alcohol… the foregone resolutions of quitting the bottle will spring in the mind out of nowhere.
Either way, action is required. Instant. Quick. Urgent. Creative. But there are few problems. Pregnancy news herald two things:One,  it is a reassurance that the man does not fire blanks, which is the first known nightmare of manhood.
And secondly is the uncertainty surrounding the whole problem. You cannot be very sure that it is yours. Unless you are certain that your woman is 100% faithful, there is often sufficient alarm to be wary.
So a man eventually turns out to his boys but it turns out to be an exercise in futility since at the end he discovers that the phrase, ‘individual accountability’ was not invented for the judgment day…Judgment day comes out sooner that he expects. So he calls his closest friend and the joker offers this…
THE IMPREGNATOR: Maze naje, Deborah anadai ball…
THE BEST FRIEND: HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA AH AH…..to infinity. (He hangs up…)
He calls the second best friend…
THE IMPREGNATOR: Maze Debz anadai ball…
FRIEND NO 2: Kwani hautumii CD “kwa huyo dame”, NOTE THE PUNCTUATION.

The second best friend is normally the voice of reason who does not tolerate stupid behavior like unprotected sex from his peers.

THE IMPREGNATOR: Acha ujinga, unaona ni do aje…
FRIEND NO 2: Sijui, lakini…(the impregnator hangs up).
He thinks of the third and remembers that Teddy was in the same situation a couple of months ago. So he dials Teddy. Teddy is mteja.
The girlfriend drops him a text confirming that in deed she is pregnant that is more of black mail than anything else. He is running out of patience. Options are limited. There are a few things to be assessed here. One, is the age of the woman. Secondly is what is at stake: her school or career. Third is the moral issue of abortion…To this we shall return.
He finally manages to call any other man who has ever been in the situation…Ooh, there is a Martin.
THE IMPREGNATOR: Maze, niko in shit, Debz anadai ball na hatra sina hata mkwanja…
MARTIN: Wacha…!!!(there is sufficient remorse, highly welcome)
THE IMPREGNATOR:Maaze!!
MARTIN: Kwani kulienda aje buda?(some good concern…the impregnator can do with some listening chap).
The impregnator then spins a long yarn that involves him casting doubts whether he is the really culprit but reaffirms his consistence usage of the rubber. He then parts with a promise to leave the woman as soon as this business is conducted and seeks some loan…

The man runs berserk. Frantic. He must come with a plan…
What if he suggests an abortion and she is against it…He will be deemed as a beast and was only out to use her. What if she wants an abortion but he is against it…she will think the man insensitive and insensible of her plight.
He must carry his own cross. He is afraid of every single call but distantly hopes that may be it rolled. It doesn’t.
Nearly all my close friends have been there, done that. We shall talk about the latest case. Names are not necessary, let us get the story.
He is an addict of IT. Wherever he drinks, he must lay. He is reckless and I believe his libido should be a case study for some University. Boy, he has laid everything imaginable. He has no standards whatsoever and goes by the philosophy that whether hot or not, it doesn’t matter.
His latest catch was a young lady, a year shy of 20. He met her in some party in the company of either his cousin or one of our friends. They got on like a house on fire, to overuse the most overused phrase.
Now those familiar know something about familiarity, contempt, children and condom usage consistency. I think they got all too familiar for each other and he dropped the rubber. The following week the call came.
I have never seen a brother in so much pain. He was so broke and end month was  like a million days away. Meanwhile she had to wait for about a month and half before the man could get some decent cash so as to run some decent abortion…(uh!).
The brother was hurting. She started developing those midnight urges of a cold coke or the smell of urine or anything incorrigible pregnant women are known to demand in the wee hours of the night. In the morning she was sick. And she stuck in my friend’s crib…Consequences of erection…
Anyway they settled for an abortion. It was successful. The kid is young. She is also fresh. Impossible to imagine that already she has killed an innocent,of course my friend is an accomplice here. I wonder by 30, how many she would have done.
As for men, we can abandon responsibility faster than you can say WAIT. Either way, shit happens. How you go about it really matters.

PS:To be continued.. I need me a lady to explain how they go about their stuff, when shit happens.As it is the case women are afraid of pregnancy than even HIV/AIDS

Of stolen newspaper articles and short fat men

Of stolen newspaper articles and the folly of hitting on a woman in a company of a man

This past Friday at exactly 4.47 pm, I was raving mad. I was furious. My writing had hit the lowest possible. The worst possible nightmare a writer can meet, when not being published.

See, if a fellow writer or journalist beats you to an idea, you can only bite your lower lip and curse your lazy ass. If you submit a story and some lazy bum somewhere picks the idea and distorts it suitably that you cannot claim any ownership, you can only up hating on the editor you sent your work to and the unprofessional journalist.

But if you submit your story and it is sat on for more than two months only for it to be run under someone’s byline, you have the right to write bad stuff about guys. So, when a reputable entertainment magazine pulled this shocker on me, giving one of my better written pieces to a lady, I sort of wanted to ring the editor I had mailed the article and give a piece of my mind. The case is still on.

Ironically, the story, I had written nearly got me admitted in hospital in the worst ironic twist that not even the best in Hollywood can conjure up.

See, there is this small habit that we have of meeting young women and flattering them without caring in whose company they are. After, the annoying newspaper incident, I had to report to PO to work on the best way forward.

At exactly 7.31pm, I show up in his room and I found him doing something suspicious. It could be Yoga or some traditional rite. After the usual chit-chat and him expressing his displeasure of encountering my article under someone’s byline in the leading media house that purports highest professional competence, we decide to go for supper at Student Centre. And here, one of us nearly loses his life…

Thank goodness we have the student centre back. Though, it is meant to starve us off, it saves us the hustle and bustle of cooking and readily prepares us for the bachelor days ahead. Student Center or Senses as we fondly refer to it is an upward cafeteria that sells better food than the normal Kitchens in the University. It is not any better but it is slightly different.

We saunter in. We both tall and have that misguided feeling that we are fourth years and above the law. The first thing we do when we go in is run our eyes wildly to see if there is any beautiful woman in the vicinity. Ever since, Senses reopened, it seems to be attracting only male students and pretty boring female students from the only female hostel around here-Hall 4 where medics and Science inclined courses are hosted.
However, in some corner is a man in his early 30s seated with a young lady who must have been born when the man was through with High School. You do the Math, as I get on with the writing. You could see the effects of generational gap.

The man wore that face of a man who has been denied access to sex even after spending a dime. The chick wore that wry smile of a woman when she says NO. She seems to have lied about periods, sickness or any sexual delaying tactics that the young ladies keep on coming up with nowadays. The man seems to have run out of content and possibly plotting where he can get a woman to sleep with for the night. His mind seems to have been set on some good lay like that.

As we stand in the line, the young chick is sent for something and she queues behind us.
She is pretty. OK! Some definitions here are in order.

Pretty: She has an attractive face.It could be out of make up or well up bringing. High likelihood of a fundamental flaw, such us a flat chest.
Cute: Should specifically refer to inanimate objects or pets. We have cute dogs or cats. If someone refers to a chick as cute, then, they don’t mean it.
Beautiful: It is natural. Everyone agrees to it. It is standard. No fundamental flaws. While at it, check on Toni Braxton….

So our subject here was pretty, a not so well formed body that tells you from which part of Kenya she comes from. But there is subtle promise of hips and good height going for her. Her complexion is that of dark chocolate or some desert honey; sensuous and sweet. Actually, one would be tempted to lick her on the neck to confirm if she doesn’t taste sweet literary…There is a naive uncertainty about her. It could be her partner tonight in the presence of the many young boys, possibly her peers or even class mates.

So PO pulls his most hideous grin, nay, monstrous is much like it and stares up at her. She smiles back, I can’t tell whether it is out human courtesy or out of amusement. The grin somewhat resembles the upheld nostrils of a black bull against the hind of the cow, testing if the cow is on heat…

“Hey, Hello,” mumbles PO and it is evident that there is every sinister motive.
“Fine,” She replies in a comradely way.

The boy friend (let us just call him the manfriend) looks at us suspiciously but possibly dismisses our attack as mere play or just class mates.

“Is he interesting?”, PO asks rather curtly…
“Well…he…”She doesn’t finish. She didn’t expect the question and quite obviously the man is not funny. She seems to have been attracted to the flashy things the man could be flashing. It is conventional wisdom that one of the 37 characteristics that women share with fish is that they are both attracted to flashy things.
“If he was to be an animal…”PO starts but thinks better of it but the humuor is lost on the chick.
I warn PO, that it might turn out that the man works in the military and he might pluck his ugly nose. He might be one of those nasty men that when he picks a fight with you guys plead with him from a distance to leave you alone. PO wanted to persist but the chick denied him further audience, quite justifiably. I think so.

We buy our bad food and move to a table in the far off corner. As I sit down, I can see from where the chick went to sit, pointing our direction and there is something ominous about it. In less than two minutes, the man stands up and walks towards our direction, quickly and confidently.

I cut short what I was telling PO, to announce the imminent danger. PO on the surface is normally the most confident thing I know but subjected to real danger, he is chicken piss. He begins to sweat but cuts that confident look.

The man, he is short and fat (Hell! How I hate and despise short men) with the possible exception of Bony. He seems enraged. Badly. Eyes are blood shot and he seems all too ready spoilt for a war.

He gets to our table:
“Wassup?” He says looking my direction.
“Fine,” I say as PO mumbles along. Boy he looks grave and at this point he seems ready to hit some hard. I mean really hard.

“Is there a problem between you and me?” He asks me, while PO is watching.
I want to own up that it was PO, but that will be unmanly. I keep quiet. My senses acutely aware, should he dare try something stupid. Silently, I’m daring him.

A moment elapses, before PO says, “It was me who spoke to her,”

“Ohh, I thought it was this one, you see he has that guilty face,” he attempts to be humorous and this somehow disarms him.

“What is the problem with?” He asks quite patronizingly…

PO starts stuttering… “It was just a small banter…you see,”

“But then why call me an animal,” He raises his voice. I stare at any movable and portable device in the vicinity and a possible exit route.

He warns us and walks out with the chick. The girl smiles rather sheepishly to us. She seems the type that I can go out if I meet soon.

So I ask PO, what made him act too fast.
“There are some debts that might be impossible to settle. Like if I have you lose six teeth…”Ha ha ha.

A man in a company of a woman is the last you want to rub the wrong way. If he fights you and the woman cheering, you will be battered, beaten, smitten, ran over, smashed and all that. Nothing like the nuanced motivation of a woman, especially if the reward at the end of the evening is her sleeping facing the ceiling.

I’m the living testimony. I once abused a cop and his girlfriend at KBC, where we were getting smashed and I nearly lost my eye. The short, burlesque, ill tempered burger nearly brought me down. To be honest, I wet myself. It wasn’t funny. Quite annoyingly is the way the woman pleading with them to forgive me.

I apologized profusely but my drunken (sic) fell on deaf or is it stupid ears.
I hate the fact that even after putting my case clear that whatever I did was under the influence they could hear nothing of it. Simply because some pretty 30 something woman was in the vicinity…nkt.

So PO, next time you see a man, especially a short man in the company of a beautiful woman, keep off.

The man possibly must have read my stolen articles that encouraged men to step up to a fight whenever and wherever their women are  wronged. Too bad that I could have been on the receiving end…

Revisting the first year tales

Two very hostile female first year crowds and the fool
I shouldn’t have walked into the room. It was a stupid idea. A costly mis-calculation that you live to regret the rest of your life. When you are a bearded,  tall, not so handsome guy in your middling 20s in the crowd of starry-eyed first years who have already formed nasty opinions about life, you better know how to behave.

I walked into the first year female hostel rather confidently expecting to meet the beautiful lass we had been in talking terms for now quite some time with only her friend, but it turned out to be quite an unforgiving  crowd.

My object of obsession is a beautiful, tall, light-skinned lady with a pair of feet that is a sight for many a sore eyes. She possess the most scandalous sense of humour in Nairobi. C’mon, when was the last time you encountered an incredibly witty young girl who is original while at it…I had met under strange circumstances.

Let us get the story. We met over lunch at the Central Catering Unit. The following day I stumbled upon her in our stop over club, in the company of her friends having mad fun. I was drunken craze and stupid. I barely recognized her. When I did, I deliberately ignored her for the simple reason that I didn’t want to look stupid when I had plans. It was all in good faith.

In one of my visits to the loo to empty the ever surging bladder, My boy Flex had dragged one of her friends to the counter and was feeding her one of those drinks that at Kshs 200 and only sold from the counter. When I was passing, Flex called me over. No sooner I stood there, than the lass asked me a small favour. A wish, given the circumstances I could have granted her but the circumstances were the least giving.

Here was a close friend to the lady I wanted to take out tempting me and here was a brother buying her shots begging me not to ‘slice’ her. I had to heed my brother’s request as well make sure that I don’t jeopardize any slim chances of nabbing my object of desire. But it happened too fast that before I could tell what had hit me, I had managed some quick snog on the friend before finding my way back to the lounge. She was watching. She didn’t find it mildly funny.

I called the willing one the following day but she told me that I had lost my chance and she wanted to know what I had going on with the other lady…Predictably I said nothing…We were to meet later. We stumbled upon each other some place in campus. It was somewhat awkward on my part, but she seemed very unconcerned. She carried that look of…”dude we do that every f****ng Friday, c’mon wassup’’.

My further propositioning hit on a wall when she asked me about my object of desire. Well for the record, I never intended to play the two. That will be the most indiscreet thing to do in the history of indiscreet things. But there is something intriguing about a woman who asks to get your groove within two seconds of meeting. Something inquisitive. I wanted to find out what but her asking about the other girl put me off.

Then I dialed the one I was after and she confronted me with the indiscreet incident at the club upfront. I blabbered something to the effect that it wasn’t me, but she had seen me and the damage was done. I had to come out clean. I had to know which side of my bread is buttered and thus I settled for her and decided pronto to drop any further plans with the other. I deleted her number pronto. She did agree to meet me and we got along just fine. They also remained friends…

Then this fateful Thursday she was in town checking out on her fellow female freshaz in campus. She told me where she was and rather than calling her down, I decided to go up and see if I can humuor her friend before we could leave  to whatever destination.

I knocked and there were a shrill “come in” from inside and I bounced in. To my detriment, there were four of them. The chick I had made out was seated the closest and she pulled one of those faces that communicate 877 negative things about the person they are directed to. The other two seemed innocently unconcerned but the tension in the small room was so palpable, I swear I touched it. My subject was tucked below the decked-bed, and I thought I saw a cheeky look about her after my first few introductory words with all of them…She was enjoying the awkwardness,,how mean?????

I occasionally meet the one I had made out and I tried dropping an honest line:

“Ooh Rozy, we do met every day, it is like we stalk each other,” I said, desperately trying to be humorous…It fell flat.

“Just because we met yesterday, doesn’t mean that we meet every day….”She said rather bored and not encouraging any further question/answer thing from me.
Dead end.

I tried knowing the other…
“I think I have not met you…I’m Silas”, I asked with some exaggerated concern.
“I’m Kimberley,” she tells me deeply absorbed in her flashy phone…
“You are not…you are…”my girl friend(notice the gap between girl and friend) told her point blank…it was increasingly becoming a farce.

The young lasses kept fondling their phones, comparing their flashiness and I was left out. I could read their minds…or was I insecure???

I’m sure one of them was thinking…he looks tall but doesn’t have swag…(pronounce it daent).

Another one was like…look at his phone…you mean he dares walk around with a kamlika mwizi…he sucks…

Another one didn’t see me at all. My girl friend(notice the ga again)…was equally absorbed in her phone and I was left suspended in the middle of the room…

So what do you do when you are in the company of four young very hostile lasses who are doing and talking their own things; parties…I had one state she would wish to attend a white party and such. I was lost. I was bored. I hated myself. I felt inadequate. I couldn’t muster any humuor. All my comments were ignored and I was seeking an exit strategy…(look I have the keys to the pool table, si let me take them then you can call me once you done )or something as believable as such…

Being young is a beautiful thing. And being a young woman can afford you all the biases. Women are normally honest with their emotions. If they are not up to you, it is all over their faces. I can’t state how many times I’m often forced to pretend to be liking someone’s company, male or female when I actually feel like sinking my fist into one of the cheeks of the offending subject.

I learnt my lessons. If you are in the company of tough talking young women, you either try to be humorous…at your own peril or feign humility..at least they will be less harsh on their judgment.

But if you try some impression and it turns out wrong…then expect some tongue lashing gossip bordering on the shape of your head to your outdated fashion sense. And boy, women can be brutally honest…

If you are not the flashy types, you will be presumed the least loaded and the young ones don’t take up such suckers. If you are the flashy, they will invariably try to establish your net worth, using such parameters like, your willingness to spend on them…consistenly. And if you drive, what make of a car….

I never thought that four first years could squeeze sweat out of my face the way they did. But my friend, a sharp lady she is did realize my unease and we excused our selves…To this, I owe her some drinks…she did save my skin…

Growing old;From a Boy to Man

Today is my birthday. Some 20-odd years ago I found my way into this world and boy! how times fly.

If you were born between 2nd January and 5th January, you are one hapless guy or lady. It shows lack of commitment, permanent laziness and outright unlucky. Why, pray, didn’t you kick harder so that you get out by Christmas or New Year so that you can be a part of the end year festivities? Worse if you were born on January 4th, you happen to share a birthday with Caroline Mutoko. Worst you have a bad horrorscope (sic) name. Imagine: Capricorn

There are a few guarantees here. One, a birthday party is out of question. Everyone is preoccupied with the inexorable brokenness that comes with January’s sweltering heat. Two, the party mood has gone with the Xmas and New Year Party. Three, it is a fact that whatever age you are turning, it is always that age plus one. You start counting your age from January and it is not even distantly funny.

So come tomorrow, I will add yet another year to my fast accumulating years. And I’m hell-scared. I have not made my first million. I don’t have a baby out there and it is a big deal…Make no mistake.Growing old is inevitable. Growing up is a choice. That is cliché. I want to hope that as I grow old, I will correspondingly grow in maturity.

Now there is my favourite New Edition song that you are likely to find me humming in my solitary moments. It is my anthem. It is like a prayer to me. It guides me through the murky business of Nairobi life, where if you tell a woman that you do love her and you mean it, she treats you as a joker. The song gave BoyzIImen their name…

The New Edition song is called Boys to Men, led by Johnny Gill. Boy, I’m still trying to figure out whether there is a better vocalist than Gill.That man, he can sing his way to any woman’s heart or you know where… Google up the lyrics.

In deed growing up is torturous. But the best you can is to learn from every person, moment and events. In my few years, here is the wisdom that I have accumulated and it can startus here for this year.

1. Growing old is inevitable
Before you label me a genius of stating the obvious, let me elaborate. See, soon or later age catches up with us. That tummy shows up. Beauty fades. Not even make up can compensate your age. It is far much better we learn to invest on bettering ourselves in terms of character, temperament as soon we start getting into the other side of the twenties.

I pity women who past 25, still believe that they can retain there youthful beauty. I’d rather they spent time in maturing rather than having cat fights in night clubs or spending time trying to figure out what love is when they consistently look on the one side of the coin.
2. Accepting the inevitable
Growing up is about accepting the inevitable. A man accepting he is short (either upwardly) or where it often matters. It is about a woman accepting that she is not good in looks and getting something to compensate for that. Among my boys’ circle, there is often a rumour that goes round that average or less than average women are game in bed. It is known as the compensatory factor. Ever encountered a beautiful woman who thinks her looks are sufficient to sustain some good bedroom encounter. Let us not even go there.

There certain facts in life, no matter how painful they are, we must just accept them. For we have no hand in them.. They premeditated. Pre-planned.

2. Getting to know the language of PR

It is important to learn to communicate with all the people in your life. You should learn how to talk to your parents-in-law, the watchman at the gate, your spouse, your friends, strangers, demanding family members and all that.

If at 25, you don’t know how to compliment a particularly ugly kid of your folk, then you need to learn a few things about life. Even if the poor thing(no offense), has a pear shaped head, please find something suitable to say, even if it is comparing the kid about some forgotten hero or something cute about the eyes…

Above all, it is about learn when and how to laugh to everyone around you. Even to your friend who has the driest humour.It helps. Always moderate the laughter, because we all know when the laughter is exaggerated. Even to those who crack up their own jokes and laugh at them, find a way of dealing with them. Paul, a good pal, once observed that laughing at your own joke is like masturbation…Couldn’t agree more. Really disgusting.

3. Respecting sensibilities

The first mark of maturity is understanding that we are all different. That ethnically, socially, academically, we can’t all be the same. So we must learn to relate with others in a good way. Knowing what to say, where, how, when, why always. Respecting other people’s life (style) choices and dropping the ever tempting urge of believing that we are better than the next person.

4. Knowing what you are cut out for
Avoid competitive life. The only person you can compete with is yourself. Know what your stuff is and stick to it.
Learn the power of prayer, books and friendship….

Here is to a good start buddies and to hope that we shall have quite a session. As usual, the good, the bad and the ugly shall be exposed here. Here we go 2011..