The clock struck six and Makena heard Dan’s chair move and his shoes shuffle. She tensed and waited for the door to open. The hair on her arms stood stiff and her mind went blank. It’s funny how she had never gotten used to it despite the numerous number of times he did it. Then a familiar knock. Three times and then a slow turning of the knob. She got up from her chair and unbuttoned her blouse and sat on her desk. As she leaned back she felt the warm trickle of her tear racing down to the back of her neck.
“One minute!” she gasped as she quickly snatched some tissue and wiped her face. She didn’t want him to see her crying. She felt horrible but convinced herself it would only take a few minutes.
Dan walked in and without saying a word he locked the door drew the blinds. He then grabbed her by the waist and slid her off the table and turned her to face away from him. He was aggressive. The kind of aggressive displayed by a person taking back property that belongs to him. He unclasped her bra and lifted her skirt almost ripping it along the seams. Using his right foot he kicked her legs apart just above the ankles and pushed her head down on the table like a policeman apprehending a suspect with the intent of finding a concealed weapon. He undid the buckle of his belt as he held her down and dropped his pants this time with his hand tightly gripping the back of her neck.
She felt pain as she felt him enter. More tears. She couldn’t close her eyes while he pushed in roughly. As he grunted and heaved behind her, Makena let her mind wander off by looking at the windows on the building across the road. She watched the people busy moving about their offices as they worked overtime to meet their deadlines. It was interesting how everyone was so engrossed in their tasks that there was definitely no chance that they would look her way.
Her mind wandered off to her husband and kids. How earlier in the morning they all had breakfast in the master bed and laughed their hardest when the youngest child kept missing her mouth as she tried to feed herself like the rest of the family. She made a mess and everyone was happy. The parents had been working hard lately and the kids were ecstatic to have a much needed but rare unwinding occasion as a family. She recalled how her husband dropped her off at work as he started his Uber shift. He was really trying and the fact that he had had better days made her love him more for not giving in to frustration. The last couple of years had been tough financially and both man and wife had to make it work with their meagre incomes.
Makena felt him shake like an old car running out of fuel. He let off a deep guttural sound as his grip tightened on her hips. She could smell his cigarette breath as he contorted forward on her back. He was sweating and for a moment it felt like leaning on a wall of slime in a dirty, humid bathroom. She felt sick, ashamed and worthless. Moreso because it was Valentine’s day and she would later have to pretend to be horny for her husband.
Her boss pulled up his pants and tidied up his shirt. He pulled out his wallet and slipped her two one thousand shilling notes.
“Now you can’t say I didn’t give you a Valentines day gift,” Dan said in a low voice as he walked out, “And don’t come in late tomorrow”.
She could feel the triumph in his voice and how confident he was that this arrangement was permanent and that she had no power to stop it. More tears.
As she cleaned up and put on makeup she couldn’t help but acknowledge the hopeless emptiness she felt. She picked up her back and hurried out to the elevator. She took in three breaths of air and forced a smile as the doors slid open.
She desperately wanted it to stop but she couldn’t figure out how. She badly needed this job and since this had happened in her two previous workplaces, she had accepted that it is normal. Most of her friends were going through the same experience and even though this didn’t make her feel any better, it added further to the hollowness she felt in her being.
As she sat in the bus on her way home she couldn’t stop tidying her blouse and skirt. She felt uncomfortable and insecure as if everyone around her knew what she had been doing a few minutes before. Across from where she sat was a pregnant woman holding her bump as the bus hurtled down Valley Road towards the city center. Her heart skipped a beat and for a moment she couldn’t breathe. Earlier in the day she had taken a pregnancy test in the ladies bathroom. It came out positive.
This is a #TrueStory dedicated to the women and men in Nairobi who are subjected to sexual coercion every day at their places of work.
I was married but I am single now. It is a significant and life changing event especially if one was had gone through all the necessary customs and an official marriage ceremony. Every day I get many people asking me what happened and whose fault it is. Unfortunately, when a marriage comes to an end there are no winners, only losers. Whatever anyone did or didn’t do becomes irrelevant.
There is no bad or good person after such a sad and sometimes traumatizing event. Each person is dealing with something throughout the process. Most people go into marriage innocently and with the right reasons and therefore most break ups are usually not premeditated. In the end blame is shared equally because it’s a two person affair.
Every partner goes through a process of trying to understand and resolve before finally making that tough decision that is characterized by a terrifying fear of uncertainty of the future. After all, we are talking about someone who you willingly gave your life to do with as they please. Some marriages end prematurely while for others, a break up ends up being the best decision to have been made. For both of these instances, only time can validate. It is a sad reality but that is the nature of such an event.
Does one ever move on? Well for that I don’t have a definite answer but I can say with confidence that it is a journey that demands a lot of thought and perhaps patience. There are lots of things to consider including getting back together. I’ve heard of countless instances where two people realized their love for each other by staying apart for some time. In similar measure I have heard of others who knew at the start that it was the beginning of the end. Simply put, each situation is unique and requires to be treated as such.
I will not go into detail about my experience out of respect for my friends, family and most importantly to my former partner. In addition such details are irrelevant and we have chosen to be civil and I have chosen to keep the details of our lives to ourselves. I will however talk about my journey to the place that I currently find myself in. To answer the question on your mind, I am happy. I am happy for many things especially the fact that we are still friends and civil with my former partner. I am also happy that we have had a very supportive community of friends and family who chose not to take sides and instead to act and treat our situation responsibly. Very few breakups get to enjoy such benefits. Our families are great friends and they have made it clear that they haven’t broken up. I find this to be a good thing.
Life after breakup is different and also challenging. It is pointless to attempt to describe it in a simple way so I won’t. I will rather talk about the things I have learned so far.
Back in the game
Funny enough, I have no clue what dating is like these days. Asking someone out feels complicated and foreign so I am yet to be successful. I have lost the game that I had in my dynamic dating years. I have also become very anxious to meet new people or to make commitments of any kind. I have also come to accept that there is a very thin line between friendships and serious relationships with women over 25 years of age. When I was younger, I had a lot of genuine women friends and it felt normal. I could be hanging out in the wrong places but I happen to be coming across women whose main currency is instant commitment. While I quite fully understand the ‘clock is ticking’, I am also amazed at how easy it is to people to compromise their ideals in exchange for an opportunity to settle down.
I have also come across people who treat relationships like product packages. Some want a child but on condition they live separately with the father of the child. There is a man somewhere who will only agree to marry a woman on condition she agrees to him keeping his side girlfriends. The list is endless and it shows that as human beings we are always evolving.
Everyone is changing and we all seem to have a checklist that gets more unrealistic by the day. The result? There are a lot lonelier and secretly desperate people today than there ever have been before. Many people want to settle down but their ‘list’ won’t let them. In the meantime, they experiment in meaningless associations hoping that they will stumble into a perfect situation. It is especially harder for people like me who have been married before because we come with a lot of caution, fear and anxiety hoping that we shall do it right this time. My research on divorce veterans tells me the challenges of one’s next relationship almost always remain the same as the last one. Maybe this points to a more personal approach to future relationships that involves self-actualization and improvement and rather not expecting your future partner to have all the qualities in your list checked to accuracy.
How long is how long?
How long should it take before one is back in the game? How should I know?! I think the better question should be how are you wired? Are you the type that are not wired to be alone for long? Are you likely to be depressed if you are not in a relationship for more than a month? Are you a natural loner who just likes to be alone and are not in a hurry to ‘complicate’ your life again? In my opinion, everyone’s situation is unique and no one should be pressured to move in any direction. We love our family and friends but pressure from these people can lead you down a miserable path. I have no experience to be qualified as a giver of advice to this question but I have a feeling that one should go at their comfortable pace.
This is where I am at now
I have deliberately simplified my life. I get anxious when I am in communication with too many people (friends of family) at once. I struggle to maintain constant contact with friends especially when over dependence is involved. I like hanging out alone most of the time and when I hang out with friends I find myself wanting to keep the interaction short, relevant and sweet. There are a few exceptions of course. My close circle is always a priority and I could live with them for long periods of time without feeling drained. I have also found myself keeping away from negative people and also people with a lot of baggage to offload. I know this sounds mean but in today’s world everyone is dealing with something. The best we can do is encourage and be there for each other but not feel obligated to solve other people’s problems.
Am I dating? I’m not there yet and don’t know how long that might take. I have met very good and interesting people but I am focused on making sure I love and take care of myself before I can do the same for another. I have also come to learn the value of stating my intentions with everyone I meet. I believe everyone deserves the truth of intention when coming into any form of friendship. Sometimes it hurts but it breeds respect.
After my breakup I realized I didn’t know who I was and this has set me on an interesting journey to uncover my interests, hopes and any other aspect that I feel is important to move forward. I have rediscovered some things I used to like doing such as driving out in the cold of a weekend morning to watch the sunrise from a different place every weekend. I love to cook and lately I’ve been learning new life lessons from every new thing I try in the kitchen. Constantly making appointments to meet up with the people who have stood by me all along, I have come to realize one doesn’t need much. Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, sincerity gives you genuine freedom and being true to yourself gifts you happiness. Maybe one day I’ll tell you if all the choices I made were right. I have learnt not to expect perfect outcomes but at the same time I have come to appreciate that through difficult times, there is always hope to rise from the ashes to fly again. For now I am having the best view of the city lights.
Today I broke down in the car as I was driving to work. I surprised myself. For some reason I thought it’s been too long since you left me hanging on hope that you would pull through. At least once every year I get overwhelmed by this deep and helpless feeling of sorrow. But today was worse. I couldn’t help myself. So I cried and banged my fists on the wheel in rage not caring if the people in traffic could see me. You always said that you’d be surprised if I had any tears at all. You said my face made me look cold, disinterested and criminal so yes today I cried.
I have never forgiven myself for not calling you in 3 months yet you were my secret best friend. I hate the memory of calling you only to be told by your mother that you were in hospital. I can still remember how weak I felt when I came to see you at the hospital. I never imagined I could see you helpless. I thought I’d come in and you’d sit up and immediately ask me why my hair wasn’t shaved. You always wanted me to look neat and organised. For some reason I liked that I could handle your OCD.
I never understood why a beautiful soul with such a bright future would be taken first. I sat there at your bedside and for a moment my heart skipped when your heart monitor showed that my presence had gotten you excited. But you were trapped. I could see you fighting to come out from behind your tearing eyes. I could feel you trying to move your hand to touch my face. For a split moment I knew you just wanted for us to have coffee like we always did every couple of days just to talk and debate about anything and everything.
I have never forgiven myself for not being able to say anything all the times I came to see you. I was scared. I felt like you had abandoned me. I tried to speak but my throat always turned into a tight knot. I didn’t know how to talk to someone who was not able to respond. I felt angry and sorry to see you twitching and drooling all over the hospital sheets. I hated that for once I couldn’t fix it. I hate that we were so broke that we couldn’t afford you better care; I couldn’t shield and fight for you like the first time we met.
We were friends and we liked to keep it that way. We never dated and we never even saw the need of talking about it. I knew where your heart was and you knew the chaos that was my life. We were two sides of the same soul yet different in every way. But here you were, crying out for help. Trying to tell me something I will never know. There I was, trying to stay hard above my tears and trying to convince you that you’d get well.
I hate the day when I walked through the hospital gate and instantly knew in my heart that you were gone. Suddenly I knew all the things that I wanted to say to you but it was too late. We were born on the same day and hour so you know why it’s always been hard for me to understand why you were gone before our time.
I didn’t look at your face in the funeral. I didn’t cry. I didn’t want you to see me that way. Even now I find it hard to visit your grave because I know that’s not where you are. I want to hold on to the music, the laughter and the conversations that made everything okay. The best way I can honour your memory is to tell everyone around me about that brief moment in my life where I found a friend that promised she’d one day make me cry and delivered on it.
Tonight I will find a quiet spot and raise a glass to you.
– For Georgina Maxine Mueni, 1978-2007
Some people have mentors others have role models. I have godfathers. This particular one loves whisky and the occasional cuban. When the ice starts splitting in his glass you can be sure what he says next will change your future.
After clearing his throat, my godfather proceeded to tell me a story he had told many a young man before me. A story that I heard from my other godfather on the day of my wedding.
The story is about a man and his wife who lived in their mud and thatch homestead on the edge of a thick forest. The wife did everything around the house. She cooked and cleaned while the man tilled their land, split firewood and looked after their tiny herd of goats. The couple worked hard and were thankful for the simple life they had created for themselves. However, they were the laughing stock of their village because it was abnormal for a man to help his wife in work. Villagers considered him a weak man for openly caring for his wife and helping her with work. After all, a real man is supposed to enjoy the ‘benefits’ of marriage. Men would wake up late and head to sit under the great tree to enjoy traditional brew while they waited for sunset.
One day as the man was splitting firewood [so the wife could make them a meal], a huge venomous snake slithered out of the firewood and poised itself in an attacking stance. The man was terrified and let out a loud scream. He ran off screaming into the kitchen hut and jumped into the ‘itara’. [This is where firewood is stored in the roof of the hut to keep it dry.]
The wife was plucking tomatoes when she heard her husband’s desperate screams. She immediately rushed to where she had left him splitting firewood and found the snake still erect and ready to strike. Instinctively, she picked up a thick piece of firewood and started beating the snake’s head while screaming. She swung her stick until she was sure she had squashed the snake’s head completely.
Their neighbors heard the commotion and came rushing to help. When they got to the compound they found the wife sitting on the ground crying.
She said, “I was chopping firewood when this big snake attacked me. But my strong fearless husband came to my rescue and beat it to death. He fought it with such courage that it stood no chance! In fact, he has just gone into the kitchen to bring kerosene and some matches so we could burn it.I would be dead were it not for my husband!”.
When the husband came out from his hiding place, he was stunned beyond words. There stood the whole village cheering him for his bravery. He was after all the real man of the village and his wife was the luckiest woman in the world.
You see the woman knew she had married a coward but she also knew she had married a good man nonetheless.But this snake ordeal was their secret to keep.
When two people spend time together, they start discovering their strengths and weaknesses. Sometimes, these [strength and weakness] aspects defy the expectations of society.
I have seen men who’ve lost their jobs and agreed to stay at home and watch the kids while their wives brought the dough. I have seen women who have the guts to protect their families while their men go into panic because they lack the courage in adversity. Most of all I have seen couples who still love each other despite these ‘unusual’ and overlapping strengths and weaknesses.
Some women can’t fry an egg while some men can’t install a light bulb.
While I advocate for every sex to try their best to learn and improve on their natural roles, I also acknowledge that for some it may never change. We all come from different backgrounds so it would be unfair to judge the one you love based on your idea of the man or woman of your dreams. Love ignores such details.
The most important learning is how you talk about the one you love in their absence. This is the PR in a relationship. When you talk negatively about the man you’re with to the world. You cut off his feet and deny yourself the chance of ever making a good man out of him. Someone once said, ‘A wise woman knows the importance of speaking life into her man. If you love him; believe in him, encourage him and be his peace.’
The same applies to men. Like us, women come into a relationship with many faults that need fixing and adjusting to. This is natural. We’re all raised differently and have had different experiences that shaped how we behave now. Instead, always try to understand the genesis of that particular trait that you don’t like. You will be surprised that you’d have turned out the same given her circumstances! When you talk about her to others, paint her as the perfect picture. After all, perfection is how you choose to look at it.
In the end you will realize that the world feeds on your shortcomings and soon your words work against you. Be careful what you say about the ones you love.
It’s been ages since I wrote a post. I missed you and I have so much to tell you. It’s been quite a ride I must say but first, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. Do you realize that A Day in a Dog’s Life is probably one of the first books written publicly by an author together with his readers? That makes me a very proud man. I am thankful and hopeful that this book will be sold and pirated widely. A Day in a Dog’s Life is now selling on Amazon so let’s get online and buy. In the meantime, let’s write another one. Time’s a wasting.
I won’t lie to you, like most of my friends, I never thought it would turn out like this. The idea of being seriously hooked to someone let alone being attached for life was never one I toyed with. I was never really a ‘bad’ guy in my previous life but the mere thought of bidding farewell to the free world scared me. It would never have occurred to me that I would find my way home in the end.
We got married on a lovely morning on the twelfth of December, on an arc over a sparkling pool of blue water. You should have seen the green dew bathed grass glittering under the warm yellow of the sun as my circle of friends made every effort to make this day a dream. And after waiting a century-long seven minutes for emancipation, I finally saw her. I felt boyishly stupid. Even after three years, my insides still melted whenever I saw her. She looked outrageously beautiful in her iced out white dress and little silver ballet shoes. I couldn’t believe how badly I wanted her and even though weddings are normally scripted, I couldn’t help miming an ‘I love you’ to her as she cruised to me. Too bad she couldn’t ignore me because I spoke to her heart. Love was thick in the air as we met on the bridge that I could feel the water steam below. Had this gone on any longer we surely would have set the place on fire.
Yeah, that is me going all emotional. At this point I don’t really mind being a wuss because it feels right. So far so good; I think we’ll be okay. Please don’t ask me how marriage life is or when we’re planning on having a baby because we’re just riding the wave. It’s more fun that way. There’s no formula to it. You wake up each day to work on your boat lest it starts leaking. There will be bad days but more importantly, there will be great moments. You fight, you make up. You love and piss each other off and through all these times you learn to respect the one you’re with.
I will tell you some truths that most married men would find uncomfortable. The reality of their pasts and the turbulence that led them to become love’s greatest martyrs. Ask any person who’s ever been married (willingly out of pure love), it is a great feeling and for a moment your life flashes before your eyes. So why did I get to the point of giving in? Why would I leave the pursuit of all the lovely women I have met in my life to settle for this [annoyingly beautiful] woman that is the love of my life?
I’ve had a good life. That, I must admit. I’m talking about dating and any kind of relationship that a man and a woman can possible have. I remember the first kiss I got was when I was about seven or something close. I can’t remember well. Here’s the interesting part, it was this girl who was about fifteen years older than I was. I’m sure she didn’t kiss me because I was this hot dwarf alpha male. I just happened to bust her kissing another girl and I got curious. So In exchange for my silence I got one wet kiss from this head buzz of a girl on knees. I’m sure she found my kiss wanting but I didn’t care. Think of it like Halle Berry trash talking you as a bad lay. I’d be least bothered. Well, this girl was definitely not a Berry but I thought she was hot at the time. Well, kids tend to appreciate beauty in an awkward way. Boobs first and everything else is a complication. I think every kid under thirteen is a hippy on the inside coz I had this awkward crush on this girl for a long time after the experience that she became my religion. I hope my parents will skip reading this part.
Anyway moving on, sex soon came and luckily, I had it with a much older and experienced girl. Then there came the dry high school years where you just date and write lots of sob letters from ‘prison’. I always hated how we had to be locked up most of the year. We rarely saw women and to some, that was the beginning of an array of disorders that today’s man comes with. How did we even survive those four years? I think we were constantly emotionally confused and desperate but it was part of growing up. I hated school; I’ve had a few good memories of high school though.
Then came the college years where dating opportunities were in plenty but very few were actually viable. At some point I dated this girl that hardly knew a word in english or any language that I could speak. So we just settled on facial expressions to communicate and cuss words to fight. Good thing we were both broke and she’d never been to a date so it was a good thing to my empty pockets. She was a refugee and I was a runaway and this gave us some sort of consolation. I’ll tell you about it a story or two from now. Naturally it didn’t last and we both had to move on. That was a long time ago and I skimmed through a number of relationships each time believing that I’d finally got it right till I got to a point where I wanted something serious.
That’s when I experienced my first bout of cold feet.
Why is it so hard for men to get to that point of proposing? Why do we fear commitment or making promises? There was this pal of mine who had this girl who was always pressuring him to propose because she was ‘running out of time’. Every time he took her out for a date she’d start saying yes even before they could pick their order from the menu. He found it annoying and suffocating how she kept on sending him pro marriage emails. Then came my other friend who was with his girlfriend just because she was a good lay. She couldn’t boil an egg to save her life and she lacked manners. He left her at the altar when he considered that she’d promised him a threesome on their wedding night. Why the hell would a man in his right mind marry a girl that doesn’t see the awkward nature of a threesome on the night of their marriage?
There are so many reasons why men are afraid to commit and every one of them is valid. One thing I would advise any man who hasn’t reached that commitment part of his life is, explore! Meet all the women you can find. You always believe you’ve met or seen the most beautiful woman till you venture out of your small scope. There are WOMEN in the world but like in a convenient store, they come offering different things. Most of us are afraid of losing that one that we think is the only one we have. We rush in too fast for the kill like hyenas even when there exists some doubt. Beauty alone doesn’t cut it (although it must be present). Don’t end up with someone YOU don’t consider beautiful. At the same time, this beauty that you behold must be genuine. There is character and a whole list of other things. What I have come to consider important is the realisation that the person who you end up with is and will be DIFFERENT from you in many aspects. We are raised differently and our ways and opinions don’t have to match. With that said, don’t be in a hurry to commit and most of all, take good time in knowing and developing yourself.
To prevent cold feet, it is advisable to blurt out all your secrets while still in the romance stage. Love, lust & infatuation makes a good buffer for telling one another your past sins and mistakes. It is at this stage where anything can pass and be forgiven. Never at any one point imagine your exclusive partner will forgive you for waiting until the two of you get serious to tell him that you slept with his brother. It only breeds resentment. Remember. There’s always a valid reason for every fight. Since a man and a woman are created differently, they will almost always be at war save if they choose to fit into one another’s shoes.
There are things about a man that will never change. He will always need his cave time whether married or not. A man without cave time has baggage that no woman can handle. Cave time is how a man deals with his problems and challenges. Secondly a man will always value his associates; both male and female, family or friends. I think we’re just wired to stick to and pay homage to what makes us who we are. I wouldn’t advise any woman to tamper with that aspect in a man especially during dating. If he ever catches the slightest whiff that you have reservations about the people or things he values most, he will drop you like a hot potato. I wouldn’t advise any woman to try replace any friend in a man’s life. It’s easier and much more fulfilling to create your own space in his life. Take time to understand the things you can’t change about him. Find their origin and just understand. If you can’t take the implications, then jump off that boat early.
Dear women, a real man is wired for risk. He will lay down his life for anything he finds important even soccer. The worst you can do is try turn him into a wuss because you will have to live with it. Let the man fight and get all the scars he can get. Let him dismantle everything in the house just try reassemble it however destructive he may be. Let him go fishing and drinking with the boys so he can have gripping stories to tell your future kids. The boy in a man never dies. Avoid accompanying him to the garage or to the bar to hang out with his boys. Men hate that. You can imagine how awkward it would get if your boyfriend was chatting with your girls at the salon while you were in the dryer. I know you get what I’m trying to say. Sort that out. If you are the type that will blow your man’s phone with those surgical-location-based-trick-questions, just don’t get into a relationship. Sort that out first. You’ll turn him into a liar and he’ll resent you.
Finally, I’m no professional on issues of marriage as I’m still new in the field but I have a few things I can talk about confidently. First a wedding is not a marriage. It is an event that comes and goes in the blink of an eye. A marriage is a lifestyle and an experience that should last an eternity. It also happens to be a school where two stupid and selfish people learn to rely on each other and efficiently achieve goals as a team. Therefore is it not wiser to plan more for marriage than a wedding? Think about it. Loving and taking care of another person has more meaning and fulfilment to it. Sometimes you will have differences and conflict but at the end of the day you learn to appreciate your individualities. Secondly, don’t force yourself into it if it’s not your time. Dear women, the whole story about a biological clock is still not good enough as an excuse to settle for someone you’re not sure about. As for my brothers, take your time to shop and ponder on who you want to settle with. That is all.
These days I find everything funny. I have resigned to the fact that after the rain comes the sun. After a feeding frenzy comes a satisfied fart. Every new set back in life looks like the end of it all. When you survive it, you can’t help basking in the cameras and flood lights. Suddenly, you’re an inspiration and you secretly fantasize that Hollywood will eventually do a movie based on your crap achievement. You have become this prompt status updater who wants to advise all the miserable people of the world. You’re stupidly sure that someone will learn from your over exaggerated weak attempt at own-ball-licking. You wish this moment can stretch longer like a hot mess of chewing gum. Who are you to think you’re so smart? Who gave you the right to think you’re such an entertainer?
So today I choose to tell you a story about someone I know. Maybe you’ll learn from it or at least use it to look like a smart ass in the bar. I won’t charge you. After all, this is a true story.
Mr. Macharia is the typical Kikuyu man. At 60, he is happily retired and lives in a townhouse with his wife of 35 years. He’s never stepped into a kitchen unless there was a ‘rat’ situation that his wife could not deal with. Old Macharia believes that women should always be served the softest parts of a goat, namely the tongue, liver and kidneys. That young boys should be left to fight over the ears, knee caps and charred hoofs after everyone else has had their fill. After all, they’ll have all their lives to fend for their own goats. He believes that girls belong to the kitchen and boys belong to the fields to watch goats and hopefully get a chance to fight off hyenas while they are at it. He believes that a man should grow a beard unless he’s a woman. A woman should not be seen hanging around a butchery because she may be tempted to leave her man for a kilo of meat offered under the counter by the butcher. He doesn’t believe in inheritance for daughters and finally, he doesn’t trust ATM cards and light skinned petite women. In short, he doesn’t give a belch what you think. The world should have order and it would be stupid to fix or service something that’s not broken.
This one time he decided to have a drink at a popular joint in Kasarani fondly known as ‘Carwash’. With him were two young men almost 40 years his junior who happen to be his errand boys. Drinking with younger men has never bothered Macharia. As long as they’re not childish, a man is as good as the next man regardless of their age. That is Macharia’s policy. Anyway on this particular night just as the three were about to finish their beers, two light-petite women strolled into the bar looking dolled up and supple. Their restless but confident eyes were a sure sign that they were in the bar on ‘business’. Seeing that everyone’s stare was on these wobbly-bottomed-sex-hungry looking bad girls, Macharia did not waste any time. He jumped from his seat and escorted them to his table. Macharia has always been a winner and since he looked like a wealthy old man, the other patrons at the bar gave up trying to signal the stunner girls to their tables. You just can’t fight old money with some little cash from your ages.
He ordered wine for them and suddenly, they night seemed to liven up for the three men. Now in every situation such as this, the man that’s buying the drink has to get the most beautiful girl while the rest of the men are left to fight for the rest. In this case, the ‘young boys’ were left to fight over the ears and hoofs. Being a seasoned pick up artist, Macharia was quick to lay down his terms of engagement with this hot take home girl. He made sure that she knew the rules. All of them. That he would buy her drinks and any other refreshment she needed for the night in return for a ‘steamy session’ thereafter. She agreed whore-heartedly.
After a few hours of heavy drinking and dirty dancing with the little girls, Macharia popped his pill and declared it was time to go and sort the ‘other issue’. The young men bade him goodnight and said they would stay on with the ‘hoof’ for a little longer as they pondered over who among them was going to take her home.
Once outside, Macharia went on his cellphone to try find a cab to his favorite lodging or ‘kichinjio’ as it is known among his peers. His date Shiku however, had other better ideas. She reasoned with him it was not good to waste money on cabs and lodgings when it could be used in better ways like paying for her campus fee. Clearly, Macharia had never experienced such a smart hooker. He gave in and was eager to go because his pills were kicking in. Things were getting conveniently hard. You see for Macharia an erection is a blessing. It’s hard to come by and it is equally hard to know if it will happen tomorrow. They got into his car and drove for 15 minutes before going off road into Ngomongo. A hard knock neighborhood located in the valley behind the Moi International Sports Centre. Macharia remembered he had been here before in the early eighties to buy some land. He’d even forgotten where his plot was. It was still out there somewhere, but that will be a story for another day.
They drove through the slum occasionally shining their headlights on random hoodlums here and there. The stench of burst sewerage was overwhelming. It felt like driving through a huge ass. After a maze of turns, they reached Shiku’s house. Sorry I hadn’t mentioned her name before. In a bit you’ll know why. So Shiku lived in the middle of the slum in a one room house that stood by itself, surrounded by what appeared to have been future plans of an unfinished construction. Her house was right smack in the middle of one of the most unknown and feared neighborhoods in Nairobi like a queen bee’s pod.
By this time, Macharia was so hard he was pulpitating. He gripped Shiku’s buttocks as she fumbled with the padlock. This caused her to drop the padlock in surprise. Macharia trusted himself. He was a go getter and straight to the point. It was rumored that he had the strength of a ram when it came to women. That once he worked on a girl she’d beg for her life from the opposite side of he room wailing loudly in bewilderment. Maybe that’s how he came to be known as the ‘carpenter’. Shiku tried to grop for the padlock in the dark but had to give up as Macharia pushed her into the house in his wild uncontrollable heat of lust. He kissed her and at one point his tongue was deep in her throat but it felt like there was a struggle. He couldn’t understand why she kept on pushing him away. After all he had made it clear how it was going to go down. She slithered out of his grasp as he tried to tear off her top. They went on like this until Shiku spoke up in a rather terrified tone. She blurted that he was scaring her and that she was fearful he’d strangle her. This stopped Macharia in his tracks. He had never been accused of been rough with a woman let alone a prostitute. He had always known he was a romantic. Smooth lined in every way. Maybe it was the pilled. he fought himself down. With his erection now humbled, Macharia started comforting Shiku in low soothing tones. Telling her that he wasn’t a bad man and that he’d wait till she was ready. And as if to test him, Shiku dared him to hold her and spoon her till she fell asleep. This way they’d wake up in the morning to make love.
Macharia gave in and spent the last few hours to dawn caressing Shiku and running his mouth all over her neck and back until he fell asleep.
Macharia woke up in a start. Shiku wasn’t there. He quickly ran to the window and sighed. At least his car was still there, intact. He got out and sighed again. There she was, coming from the kiosk a few feet from the house. She had a funny scared look about her. He could feel the anger flare within him and he wasn’t about to let her give another excuse. He had bought her drinks and it had to pay off. He beckoned her to come back to the house and do due diligence but she had other plans. Without warning, she started screaming at the top of her lungs. In the most whorish of shrieks, she shouted that he wanted to rape her and strangle her. This being a slum, a crowd soon formed and was in no time baying for Macharia’s blood. They were carrying, whips and stones, ready to smash his car and lynch him. The tension between the haves and have nots is usually a deep rooted one. Macharia had not option than to beg for his life and a chance to explain himself. He narrated how he had met Shiku the previous night and how they ended up in this standoff. Now in the hood the people’s court is usually very fair. For after hearing his side of the story they asked Shiku if it was true. She admitted it was.
Now the crowd turned on her and demanded that she pay her dues to the ‘poor man’ who had even volunteered to drive her home in his expensive Audi. They forcefully pushed her into the house and vowed that they’d only let her out if the old man had satisfied himself having her.
Inside the house, Shiku desparately tried every excuse in the book to get off but Macharia would hear nothing of it. She said she was on her periods but Macharia brushed it off saying he liked his sex messy. She tried the STD card but he countered by saying it still didn’t scare him as he had only a few years to live too. Then finally, she told him that she wasn’t a woman to which he laughed until he fell down in an epileptic giggle.
“Why don’t you remove your pants and I will go!” He dared her. “If you’re a man I’ll fire up my car and go home in peace!” He continued laughing like a mad man.
Then slowly, Shiku unclasped her skirt from behind and let it down. Then she turned round. There it was. Cello-taped to his right thigh. The biggest and longest Macharia will ever see of a man’s fire arm.
Macharia is a quiet man these days. As I said. He hates light petite human beings, both male and female…whatever.
He got out of the house and banged the door behind him in anger. He felt she didn’t know how much he had sacrificed only for her to repay him how she did. He felt the lump in his throat grow bigger and harder and he could not help but choke as tears forced their way out beneath his quivering brows. He felt bitter and he could feel the uncomfortable heat of rage churning his insides. How could she? The mother of his child and his only wife that he had learned to love so much? She’d kept it from him all these years and now it made so much sense. He’d always wondered how it happened. No one seemed to know the details and no one seemed to care. He couldn’t bring himself to acknowledge that she was capable. This time he wouldn’t forgive her. How much more harm was she capable of? He knew this was the last straw. He walked in the rain for hours late into the night. In his hand was a bottle of whisky. The third one since he got out of the house. In his pocket were four pictures. A story of how he’d buried each of his children who’s lives were snuffed out at exactly six months of age. Strange but all the deaths were attributed to some vague ‘condition’ he still couldn’t understand. After 7 years she chose to tell him today. Her eyes were empty and she had this look that was scary and aloof. She did it. She’d pressed a pillow over their faces one by one. Their hands were to feeble to fight her off. The mother has power over her offspring. She feared that he’d stop loving her.
And as he staggered into his front door, there she was staring blankly into the white. At first he thought she was floating in the air in her murderous trance but a flash of lighting revealed the rope behind her neck. He was too late. He knelt down as his knees gave way to a hopeless weakness. And at the far corner of the room, his son sat there playing happily with his toys oblivious of his dead mother’s dangling stunt.
Today is little Jonah’s graduation. Wait, he’s not little anymore. He’s graduating from one of the best universities in the world. As his name is read out, one can’t help wonder how hard the road has been for him. You see his father suffered a stroke just after his mother’s suicide. He suffered another stroke during Jonah’s last year in campus. Now he’s sitting at the front of the crowd where the disabled have been allocated spaces just below the dais. He can’t talk. He can only show his excitement by drooling some more. It’s been a tough 14 years for him and Jonah. It’s almost as if Jonah had understood their predicament all through the years for he worked really hard. Now he was top of his class. Little do they (father and son) know that that Jonah’s dad would die the week after the graduation; peacefully. This time, he wasn’t too late. At least he saw his son become something.
This short story is dedicated to a friend who I chose not to name. He happens to be one of the most successful young people of our time. It’s never too late to tell a story.
Just as a drop of blood in the ocean attracts a frenzy of sharks from miles away, there are certain types of man that are very magnetic to women. For the man who wishes to know how he can raise his profile, I’d suggest you read this and share it as wide as possible. To my sisters, I will try as much as possible to steer clear of hurting your feelings as I explain my view. Discussion like these usually end in a stalemate. But first, a disclaimer is necessary. I have no moral or technical authority to advise on relationships. I have come to acknowledge that the whole relationship affair is a complex algebra that we never really get to solve. It’s funny how many people are hiding in the comfort of what has come to be the biggest façade of all time. Most men are getting a raw deal when it comes to relationships. I will therefore speak solely on behalf of the boy child. I will tell you why the modern man is in trouble. I will do so by talking about every type of man I know. So back to my topic. The men that attract; blood in the water.
The good man
He is good natured and always has good intentions in everything he does. He is the guy that opens the door for you and brings you breakfast in bed DAILY. He never forgets your birthday and every other anniversary as long as it means something to you. He listens to you and never gets tired of putting up with your flat jokes. He doesn’t mind kissing you even when your mouth is filled with the ‘ass smelling’ mixture of bread and tea. He asks you for permission whenever he has to pee or poop. What do you know! He has your picture in his wallet and office desk. He listens to mushy music and is very in touch with his emotions. This man lacks an aggressive bone in his being and seems to be liked by everyone. He is focused on you and you are sure he will never play you. Those lovely romantic texts in the middle of the day are just SO HIM. Your friends are envious of you and your puppy.
To the ladies: If you have this type of man, hold on to him tightly because he is a fast declining species. He is going to be very good for you when you are past your mid ages [if you get what I mean]. He bottles up emotions and gets very bitter when he is betrayed. He is the most likely to turn into a bad man when his options run out. If you want to protect your sisters in future, don’t mess with this man now.
To the men: If you are this type of man, I have a mixture of admiration and worry for you. You see as much as women claim to prefer your type, they really would prefer the opposite. Correct me if I’m wrong but how many have let you down? The last one cheated on you right? The world spits on the good man. They want excitement and the drama that comes as bad boys. Women are addicted to turbulence and for some reason, they seem to like it when the boat is on the rocks. One word. Thrill. You don’t have it good boy and that will be your downfall.
The rich man
Like black oil, he is rich, attractive and very liquid. He dresses well and seems to always have an in-house barber. He is cultured and literally gives the other men in your life (including your man) a run for their money. A date with him makes you feel like a Bond™ girl. He is the man with a plan. Have you ever been to the Mara? This type of guys make it happen. Then there’s this status thing. Women will envy you. Some of them even have the nerve to tell you they prefer this guy to your ‘good guy‘ who’s back in the house doing the dishes.
He treats you to the fine things in life. What’s more, he is single and searching. He is just the perfect playboy.
To the ladies: Good luck on your find. He could be a good guy. One thing is clear, these type of men are not good for the women without ambition. At first it will be all rosy but after a while they will need to connect with like minded people. No successful man wants to be with a woman who can’t hold it down on her own. It’s just the way the world works.I’d advice that you adopt an aggressive method of protecting this man and looking out for his interests. It works like magic.
To the men: If you are this rich man, you are definitely blood in the water and the sharks are heading your way fast. Try as much as possible to never commit until you are ‘tricked’ well. Most of they women interested in you are after your success. With that said, there are still good women out there who will be attracted to you in good faith. You just need to be aware of your surroundings. Meet and date as many women as possible. About you money, do take care of the people that really matter to you. When was the last time you got your family together?
The bad boy
This one never commits. He always has women wailing after him. He gets them, dates them, beds them and he is done. No strings attached. He spends money mostly on himself and the rest he invests in women who will give him a good return. One curious thing though, women have come to like this breed. Everything about them (bad boys) is attractive and they seem to say everything right. The thrill of being with such a guy is irresistible. The allure they posses makes them very valuable targets. There is so much loneliness and want in the world today and all you need sometimes is just a person who can ‘sort you out’ as you look for your Mr. Right. I know, I know… He probably has your underwear from last time still hanging on his fridge as a trophy. He is the guy with the prettiest women and guess what else? They don’t mind!
To the women: I know you’re probably thinking that one day you will change him. I just hope you can say listen to yourself. You are part of a statistic. Remember those thongs you saw at his place? He is definitely not a cross dresser, believe that. He is just an honest man who has decided to be honest with himself. In my opinion, he is the most straightforward guy in the spectrum. Unfortunately you know what we say about a woman who’s been around. If you have to do it, just be discreet and please don’t do it when you’re in a relationship. As boys we look out for each other. If not, we brag out loud with every conquest. You’ll be on the news soon.
To the men: Is this you? Let me just say this man to man, you are a star! You are the villain too! You are the man responsible for the shortlist. You clear the way so that the good man doesn’t have trouble in choosing a good woman. You are probably one of the few men who know how dissatisfied people can be. You help out the desperate and those in search for adventure. You break hearts and feel jerk about it. I cannot blame you though. You always state your intentions before you ‘touch and go’ so technically you are the better guy.
They call this type ‘hussler’. He is a paper chaser among other things. He most probably runs his own business. He believes ever moment spent well, means more. Be it money or relationships. He approaches life in a business sense. He will not be with you if you don’t give him anything in return. He values his friends and family more than anything else. He is the type that takes the biggest risks. He doesn’t trust anyone especially women. He is practical and he compliments rarely. When he says something positive about his woman, she takes it seriously because his approval is hard to come by. He is not an emotional creature but he happens to be strangely romantic. He believes in sticking where there is good business so he will stick and invest in a good woman. He is uncultured and doesn’t give a rat’s ass if a chicken just farted in china.
He has ambition and is always trying to win. He doesn’t rely on job security but he makes things happen all the same. He has his highs and lows.
To the women: This type of guy is one whole tricky affair. It could work or fail because he doesn’t give promises. Women are always looking for a guy who will give them security. This, is a catch 22. On a positive note, this type ends up striking gold almost always. The bible says that man will live by the sweat of his brow. This is it. Unfortunately, there are no guarantees. Be it romance or time together. This type will always come back home after straying. Please stop rolling back your eyes. If you have ever been in a serious relationship, you know how painful and necessary forgiveness can be.
To the men: You’re on to something bro but you need to tone it down a bit. Money is good and important but so are the ones you love. You can afford to surprise her ever now and then. Improve yourself by striving to be a world class man. Take time to travel and see the world. Ever wonder why the women in your life keep disappearing on you? Well, they think you don’t have the touch. You have the ambition, the money and the heart but no touch. Get it?
The self righteous guy
He is the complete ass. He believes he represents the only right that exists in the universe. He is the type that believes they are God’s gift to you. Unfortunately, you can’t resist them. For one reason or the other, they have this attraction that women can’t resist. He is neat and precise. He keeps time and is always waiting for you to mess up so he can reprimand you. He is assertive and very blunt. He is ver conscious of what people think of him. He is most likely very religious. Unfortunately this type can have very bad secret fetishes. The reason he is always evaluating others is because he is in constant effort to hide his shortcomings.
To the women: Stay away form this guy! Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
To the men: If you are this guy: You will burn in hell.
The normal guy
This one is the guy that describes the average man. Sometimes he forgets the important days because he is one track minded. He is constantly trying to improve himself but not too hard. He is not a bad man but also not the best man. He lives an average kind of life. An occasional drink on the weekends and maybe church on Sundays. He is easy to figure out because most of men are just like him [or so you think]. These type stay in employment for a very long time. In terms of drama it’s the same old scenarios. In my opinion, he is sort of a mythical creature. Why are women then attracted to this type? Well, with this man, anything goes. He is easy to control and hold at ransom. Unfortunately, he gets played a lot because he is average and doesn’t leave a mark on women’s memories.
To the women: Unless you’re looking to settle, just stay off this guy. If you are serious about a normal relationship then he is the right candidate. He gives you peace of mind. However, you have to train him and mold him into what you want. He is a very good learner. He is also very likely to be a good father. He is as untidy as boys come but as I said, you can install in him some new software.
To the men: If you are this type, don’t worry. The universe will always look after you. You’ll get a raw deal now and then but you’ll be all right. You also need a hobby or an activity that will jolt you from your comfort zone. It doesn’t hurt to have dreams and ambition.
If you have something good going on for you, hold on to it. If you haven’t found the right one, hold on to your cards. It happens in the most unlikely fashion. I have so much respect for the men and women who try hard everyday to find the shoe that fits. I have much more respect to the ones that constantly repair and patch up their old shoe. Next time, I will talk about relationships and money. Is that a good topic?
BY PATRICK WANYOIKE
The last blog post by Michael Ngigi really created a furor and got me thinking. Although the actual blog was not about cheating, many people judged the blog by its title and thus lost a very important message on self-love. Many thought that the author needed some sort of intervention, well if you just read the first few paragraphs and never really bothered to read the whole thing. Cheating it seems, is a very sensitive topic although it’s very prevalent. So this blog post is ACTUALLY about cheating. Let me first reiterate that I am not encouraging anyone to cheat. I thought about this topic and I enlisted quite a number of people who wished to stay anonymous (for obvious reasons) to give their opinions on this topic. What I got back, were a myriad of reasons that was too long to list. They gave reasons for and against cheating; here are some of the reasons they gave as to why people cheat…
This was the most common reason. Most people felt that once you put time in a relationship, you lose the spark. The chemical high wears off; the sex becomes dull and infrequent. Same position, same person, and only the adrenaline of an affair can bring back those feelings of excitement. Some people just enjoy the thrill of running around and trying not to get caught. Long-term relationships have the annoying habit of making people lazy. They settle and once they do that, boredom sets in and cheating might follow.
Nobody will bring back the spark in your relationship unless you work on it. How about you try investing that time you use to cover your tracks, sneaking around and cheating to go out on a few dates and keep that spark alive? Better yet, get a hobby or work on your bucket list
So he/she went and cheated on you. You ‘forgave’ them and now it’s payback. You feel betrayed, wounded and want to give them a dose of their own medicine and even the playing field. So what do you do? You go and cheat
People do dumb shit. (Pardon my French) This is one of them. When does the vicious cycle of an eye for an eye end? All this ends up doing is leaving everyone blind.
3. Because They Let You
This was a reason given predominantly by the men who felt that once they cheated, and were forgiven; felt that no matter how many times they did it, they would be forgiven. After all, you did let them get away with it the first time.
Maybe it’s time to take a stand and don’t allow anyone to take advantage of you and your generosity
Sex can be an instant pick-me-up; that makes women feel sexier, more beautiful and more loved. And if you are ignoring her, not giving her compliments, some other man might be doing just that. For men, who need their ego stroked constantly, nothing does that better than discovering that other women still desire you sexually. And when this happens, sometimes the temptation proves just a little bit too much
Pay attention to her, ask her questions and don’t hold back on compliments — a little flattery goes a long way. And for the ladies, it’s your job to make your man feel like a man. Or someone else will…
5. Exit Strategy
Instead of breaking up with you, they cheat on you. That way they don’t have to deal with the broken relationship, which is much harder to fix. An affair is the easy way out — or at least that’s how they see it.
Don’t be a coward, man up. If you want out of a relationship, say so. Don’t cheat.
6. Its Genetic
A report came out a few years ago that said, “In what is being called a first of its kind study, researchers at Binghamton University, State University of New York (SUNY) have discovered that about half of all people have a gene that makes them more vulnerable to promiscuity and cheating. Those with a certain variant of the dopamine receptor D4 polymorphism — or DRD4 gene — “were more likely to have a history of uncommitted sex, including one-night stands and acts of infidelity,” according to lead investigator Justin Garcia. DRD4 is the “thrill-seeking” gene, also responsible for alcohol and gambling addictions. The gene can influence the brain’s chemistry and subsequently, an individual’s behavior. The desire to cheat or sleep around seems to originate in the brain’s pleasure and reward center, where the “rush” of dopamine motivates those who are vulnerable, the researchers say.
I guess they better come up with a test for this in order we can all get tested. The science is sound but whether it affects you is a totally different matter. Look at the term used “more likely.”