random thoughts of a tapered brain

Archive for October, 2010

….It’s like a party, an insectile orgy….

7 September:
It’s 2 am and the 6 beers I had earlier demand to be expelled. I wake up and get out of bed carefully to avoid waking my girlfriend then I blindly stumble my way to the bathroom. With the bedroom door safely closed, I can now switch on a light to ease my navigation.

 

The illumination reveals a bizarre sight. It’s like a party, an insectile orgy, tens of cockroaches scampering around with impunity and making half hearted attempts to hide. They obviously consider themselves members of this household but unlike the human occupants are unperturbed by the myriad shortages in Kenya and their girth declares “what food shortage?”

 
These little bastards are thriving like a Kenyan politician yet I keep all my food stored properly and I’m meticulously clean. Despite food shortages, power shortage, water shortage and an increasingly inhospitable environment they thrive and reproduce like mad.
I have fought many battles at these ungodly hours and I have claimed my fair share of victims but I despair now for they seem to carry powerful juju. Some have been crushed under slippers while others have been ruthlessly gassed to death with doom but they just keep increasing.

Despite turning my house into a Nazi death chamber every week, they increase. For every roach I kill, two appear to take its place.
At one point they got so brave that occasionally one of them would take a nonchalant stroll around my living room unfazed by the presence of guests. Any move to approach it would just inspire a short dash to a hiding place that hardly looked like it could accommodate anything. The irony was that winning was losing but losing was still losing.

 
As we discussed war stories with my butcher, I lamented about my unending battle. As the cleaver landed on the pork ribs with a meaty ‘thunk’ he said,”Iko dawa.” With a conspiratorial smile on his face, he proceeded to extol the virtues of his remedy. Being kikuyu, he sounded like he wanted to sell me the stuff and the born salesman he was spoke to me,”Hii DIAZINONE inaua yote. Ata kupe na mbu. Hakuna kitu inabakisha.”

 
I needed to add this wonder chemical to my chemical warfare arsenal. These little sons of bi@#$ had taken over my home and made a mockery of my stringent domestic sterilization regime and it sounded like the end was nigh. As I went home I stopped at an agrovet store and picked up a canister of the lethal stuff and a sprayer. The label carried a large skull and crossbones and warned the user to dress in appropriate protective equipment.

8 September.
It’s 2 p.m and here I am with a sprayer full of the poisonous concoction. My ‘appropriate protective equipment’ is an old lab coat, the face mask and goggles. The battle lines are drawn and I spare a moment to let any sensible roach escape after all, I’m not Hitler. Then the war begins, I spray every inch of the house then I lock up the house and leave for school. The label said that no living organism (me or a pet) should enter the house for 12 hours so I’ll be away for the night.

9 September.
It’s 2 p.m and I descend the stairs to my house. Already a smile is forming on my face as I view the first casualties. Two roaches lie upside down right outside my door and I gleefully rub my hands together before I open the door. It’s a holocaust. This must be what genocide looks like. Tens upon tens of roaches lie on the floor in various stages of death. Some are upside down and unmoving while others twitch spastically in corners obviously dying an agonizing death. I put in a notorious BIG cd and begin the clean up. The few survivors walk around in a daze before the poison paralyzes them for my broom. The cd plays on.

10 September
It’s 2 am and I’m awake taking advantage of the last few hours I have electricity before they turn it off for rationing. Not a roach in sight.

11 September
It’s 2 am and here I am again. This time it’s not a bathroom break or a midnight oil burning session. My nose is blocked and I sneeze every few minutes. My head feels like it’s filled with crushed glass and my throat is parched. Any attempt to swallow anything results in a painful protest by my tonsils and any movement aggravates the little men with sledgehammers in my head. My joints ache like I got malaria from a herd of mosquitoes and I feel so weak that I can barely lift off the blankets from my sweating body. The lady at the agrovet had told me that the mild illness I’d been experiencing during the day would heal as soon as my body metabolized and excreted the residue of the chemical but my slight discomfort has progressively worsened to this. I resign myself to the discomfort consoling myself with thoughts of victory but wait a minute, what’s that? No! How? I weakly watch a juvenile roach crawl out the light fixture. Aluta continua.

Senior sergent….Simple Simon Macharia (AUTHOR)

operations officer….thecoloseum


…Cockroaches: supreme couch potatoes…

“Americans are freaked out about bedbugs, 4mm long insects that they previous generations made up cute rhymes about”. And according to Joel Stein, a columnist whose work hugely contributes to my weekly allocation of laughter, many folks are now having sex standing- to escape the sneaky blood-loving bug.

He has had to change his reading habits, bed position and undress as soon as he enters the house; and not for sex, he adds.

Ok, this got me thinking about the infestations that I have to deal with. Kenyans deal with safari ants, roaches and mosquitoes. But none of them has actually reached scales requiring the “national disaster” status.

The one that came close to getting mention from the Internal Security minister must have been the Nairobi fly invasion a few years back. These tiny fuckers had the whole country scared faceless. For the tiny creatures they are, they sure did pack a punch of spit that was far from safe. nairobi fly

We had to come up with methods of minimising those that got into the house, and punish those that did; Justice delayed is justice denied. We shut the windows and drew the curtains an hour earlier than usual. Doom and other pyrethrum,-derivatives were in no short supply.

The worst infestation I guess is a roach attack. They can go for weeks without their heads and somehow manage to sneak into cracks and crevices’ in the house that you previously were not aware exist. Cockroaches are supreme couch potatoes. They spend 75 percent of their time resting. For more weird facts on the pests click here and for more go here……

I have a lot of free time on my hands in case you are wondering. 2 week paid leave and the first is spent researching roaches.

I have to kill the post and dash out. Refer to the next post if your into such kinda weird literature.


the drama continues *cue parliamentary proceedings*

as is wait for Foreign Affairs Minister Moses Wetang’ula’s hour of reckoning at Parliament, I can’t help but wonder where our country is headed to. could the time where corruption and impunity is arrested be nigh?

Could the Kenya where Ministers, Members of parliament and public servants who have for ages held this country hostage treating it as their personal cash cows be here?

is it possible that the “grave” situation that Mayor Majiwa has dug himself into be the preamble to kenyan’s burying their impunity past and marching on to the second republic?

William Ruto and his presidential ambitions. what to say? as much as I believe the expediency in which he was suspended and consequently arraigned in court today is getting a external shove, if we separate issues, and if indeed he stashed some of the public’s money, then we don’t mind if Raila himself dons a wig and calls for order in the court!!!!

the three cases currently headlining our news may be the beginning of something diffrent for Kenya.

Or is it just wishful thinking? a case of counting our chicks before they hatch?

Time will judge us right or wrong!!! For now, the drama continues.

*cue parliamentary proceedings*

kenya parliament


Who will restore sanity??????

 

nyayo stadium

 

 

Just like an aging piece of furniture that has outlived its usefulness. Just like a bad song that is on loop by your favourite radio station. That is the story of soccer management in the country; a tired tune.

Editorials have been written of the same, readers have written letters to the editors on the same. We have been treated to numerous television talk shows and radio call-ins complaining on how run down management of football in Kenya is being/already run down. Opinion pieces with the theme “to hell with FKL” are our staple diet now.

Why bother dive into an overcrowded arena with this article? Well, for some people to change their poise, some violence is paramount. And for this senile institution of self-serving individuals to pack up; this is our form of violence. Words are our weapons and coverage being our battlefield.

Kenya has never been a force to reckon when it came to international football competitions.

Our current world ranking on the FIFA/Coca-Cola standing is 115 while across the continent we are at 29. Our best show was in December 2008 when we were 68. That year also happens to be the same when we gained the most positions; 23.

We have at times pulled off some amazing upsets but more often than not, we have fallen to some mediocre teams causing us upsets. The latest Guinea Bissau loss leaving a sour aftertaste that we are now all too familiar with.

I will not mention the Uganda Cranes match.

Even before the ink dried on all the commentaries calling for the FKL and KFF fellows to seek alternative employment, the unimaginable happened at Nyayo Stadium.

7 enthusiastic fans died and scores others were injured following a stampede just before the floodlit Gor Mahia vs AFC Leopards match started on Saturday.

As soon as pictures of those who perished and those nursing injuries started streaming in they sent the country into collective gloom and thought. How could this happen? What are the parents, relatives and friends of those who perished going through? How could a soccer march turn tragic?

Soccer matches are typically an emotional affair. Soccer is an international language. Soccer is the reason warring guerrilla factions in Ivory Coast called a ceasefire after Drogba requested it.  It’s the same reason President Museveni sent half his country over to Kenya two weeks ago to cheer their nation team on.

If have not had the pleasure of going for many soccer matches, but I was in Nyayo for the Kenya Vs Uganda game.

Emotions are a real hard thing to control. When you throw in other crippling factors like alcohol, the situation is bleak at best. But passion was not the sole cause for the stampede, disorganisation was.

Referring to the organisation at the stadium as deficient is being very generous with adjectives.

Assuming no renovations have been made after the Cranes vs Harambee Stars game, my take is that Nyayo Stadium should be shut down and beat into shape.

With its capacity standing at 26,000 (FIFA’s recommended), the gates that were open to the fans were only two. Quite a feat the stadium management were trying to achieve.

Squeezing thousands of people through the least available space with time and patience tapping your back is quite an ambitious task; the barriers, blistering sun and rude policemen at hand notwithstanding.

And that red rotating gate that allows only one person in at a time. This is the only terrestrial example that comes close to the biblical analogy of going to heaven being like squeezing a camel through the eye of a needle.

And who sells tickets to such a game at the stadium, seriously? Ok, G4S may run away with the proceeds, but that’s not reason enough to ditch them.

Some of the flaws at the stadium are sore thumbs – you have to work really hard to avoid noticing them. If only the stadia management would take this dark lesson to shut and think of how to rectify things and avoid such calamities in future.

Recommendations made a while back on installing seats in place of the concrete blocks should be implemented. The stadium is still a far cry from the glory it has the ability of becoming.

If the warring factions would close shop and stop using soccer as a catapult into politics. If only persons interested in restoring our not-too-terrible soccer standards got to office.

Will this debacle that is Kenyan politics come to an end? we do not care if Government intervenes and attracts a FIFA ban.  Who will restore sanity??????

 

 


…HE WITHOUT SIN CAST THE FIRST STONE…

I have never been a fan of Classic 105 for three reasons; their music, too much sex talk and the busted show.

I’m a reggae, dancehall and one drop person #uptownThursday and #moneyfriday !!!

Secondly, seriously life does not revolve around sex! Life is brought about by it, but there’s more to our existence in the world than matters horizontal. And I surely don’t wake up daily anxious to listen to raunchy stories of “pare pare”.

Lastly, the show that aired last evening was a perfect example of why it should die a natural death. Ciku Muiruri took the joke a bit too far.

A dude gets a text from his wife’s colleague telling him that she is sleeping with the boss. The guy tells Ciku to call her up and “bust” her. Ciku poses as the boss’s wife. At  first Agnes (the cheat) denies it but when Ciku claims  her ‘hubby’ is HIV+ , Agnes says is Oh My God*10 rant! Agnes’ hubby is listening in and is mad to the bone!!

They somehow manage to pull this trickery off repeatedly with variations arising only in the curses and screams. (Some claim the calls are staged, but we will never know)

Ok, my view about this particular episode is based on the premise that only God can judge us (insert Pac’s only God can judge me now) therefore Ciku has no moral authority to wreck people lives like that.

The Amighty Wikipedia describes sin as “Sin, in religion, is an act that violates a known moral rule. The term sin may also refer to the state of having committed such a violation. Commonly, the moral code of conduct is decreed by a divine entity.” Key word: devine entity.

The debates that guys are having that she deserves what she got is a bunch of us acting like moral sweepers who’s behavior is sparkling while the opposite is true.

Who are we to cast the 1st stone while as one of my colleagues at work wrote “Never have I seen Kenyans both on Facebook and Twitter pretend to be moral purists like this morning!!”

We all have our skeletons in the closet and for Angie; hers was opening up her legs to her boss.

Being a member of the oft trashed media, this is exactly why some of us are accused of lowering our standards to levels baffling.

Kenya Communications Amendment Act 2008 states that “Broadcast services should promote the observance at all times, of public interest obligations in all broadcasting categories; protect the right to privacy of all persons adding that Any person who contravenes this section commits an offence and shall, on conviction, be liable to a fine not exceeding one million shillings or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years or to both.”

This OMG-lady had not been warned prior to her talking that she was being recorded. This is paramount when working for radio or television.

We owe the public more than this. They trust you as the disseminators of information, the truth. And you stab them in the back?

She can seek redress from the courts and claim that she has been emotionally scarred and milk the media house dry. All she needs is a crafty lawyer (like Denny Crane) who will hit them where it hurts most.

The only problem is that guys who have been “busted” have done wrong alright and are willing to bury the issue. Nobody is brave enough to just say “fuck it” and dive straight into the drama that is bound to surround such a case in the event one goes to court.

When that one person is finally busted, and as much as he was in the wrong throws caution to the wind that will be the day of reckoning for Ciku and her ilk.

Another sad bit about this whole saga is the dragging of a disease that has crippled our continent and using it as a tool to instill fear. Is this the way to end the stigma that envelopes AID?

People get post and pre counseling before getting tested for HIV. This is because the disease is a huge deal that has caused many to commit suicide and nobody should be treated to whatever Agnes was this morning.

Its plain inhumane!

The defense rests its case.


…LIVING THE LIFE OF A GUN…

machine-gun

Whether through disease or through an accident it’s inevitable; death just like taxes is certain.  That’s why I dispute the oft used phrase that somebody narrowly escaped death. It was not meant to happen in the first place. It was not on God’s to-do list for the day.

I’m not so big on the grim reaper and his antics but the death of the cashier from Ebrahims supermarket at the weekend was one that would move even the most emotionally detached amongst us.

He died trying to salvage money that was not his, an amount that presumably would have taken him many years to accumulate.

There are three things that I fear most; rats and guns/rifles/subs/revolvers/pistols (anything that spits bullets). Oh, and hot porridge for obvious reasons. I have never discoveed the reason behind my phobia for rodents but it must lie in the shape of its dental formula and its efficiency.

Guns on the other hand are loud and they have gained notoriety for dispatching people to meet their maker with remarkable efficiency. Every day we are served with stories of guys who stopped bullets in their trajectory and they didn’t live to tell the tale.

Guns have been fêted in movies; the more lethal, the better. The rapidity at which they spit bullets and accuracy at hitting targets are some benchmarks used at grading the “bad boys”.

Their desirability and sexiness of the heavy metal ends at the point when one is pointed AT you. There is no television set between you and the finger on the trigger – just porous air.

I have always held thieves, robbers, carjackers and their cousins with the highest contempt that I can gather. I place this group of individuals at the bottom of the “value to mankind” pyramid, right after a box of wet wood chippings.

Yeah, I’m a tad judgmental but that’s beyond the point. All this guys should be rounded up and executed while hanging by their small toes.

In my utopia world, I still have slots for the poor guys and the rich too. Life has never been fair and my imaginations are realistic too (my dreams however serve no master).

However, I murder all the thieves and dispose of guns. The rats too didn’t make it!

Thieves and their tools of trade are not the epitome of evil, but I think the world would be a much better place without the lot.

A world where you are not afraid to go home at 2am if you so wish without fearing that the next metal thrust into your mouth will be a pistol nozzle and not a spoon.

One where the sun sets without our bulletins reporting on “after an exchange of fire, my mboys managed to take down one suspect, while two others escaped with injuries. We managed to recover a TOY pistol”. It’s always a toy pistol recovered!

I have images world where those who deal in motion sensors, electric fences and alarms will go bankrupt.

Where nobody will pounce on another’s hard earned property forcefully or “naomba nikuibie”.

The realists will bring me back home with an emphatic “You Wish” and argue that since thieves are here to stay, we better have guns around for our police. Well, there’s some truth in that since guns just like girls, you can’t live with them, and you can’t live without them.

Meanwhile in my parallel universe, somebody should plant a cactus on Mikhail Kalashnikov’s grave  and water it with a bag of ballast while at it.


Faith blooms in the most barren of places….

“Faith blooms in the most barren of places.”

In the Bible, Sarah’s birth to Isaac at her advanced age of 90 after years of failed attempts defines the word “miracle”.

More biblical examples were illustrated the “food shower” when the heavens opened up and it rained manna and another being the story of five loaves of bread and two fish.

What is currently happening in Chile is a present day example of a marvel that escapes human understanding.

 

chile_mine_rescue

 

 

The rescue of 33 miners trapped in their copper and gold mine caved in on August 5th has the whole world glued to their screens, thumbing away tweets (the Chile president too) about how awesome this event is. Many people have travelled from far to the site now christened Camp Hope in the hope that a divine happening will visit them too.

As I watched the graphics about the tunnels and levels where the miners have called home for the past many days, my conclusion was that that’s some scary s%&t right there.

700meters underground and surrounded by unstable boulders angry at you for chipping at them is not exactly a relaxing atmosphere. Throw in the uncertainties on the surface about you being alive and hope starts dozing. Add doubts about the food supplies running out and hope goes into deep slumber.

And after they counted over 70 days that they were in the earth’s belly; they are being shuttled up to safety and into the arms of waiting family.

The whole ordeal is one that I’m sure has enough Hollywood directors salivating at the prospects of making a hit from this. This is what has informed the miners to sign a memorandum to keep hush hush on the details of their stay “downstairs” unless all of them are to benefit equally from it.

I imagined myself locked up in my house for the same peiod of time, with a limited amount of food, drinks and the house devoid of all amenities that keep me sane. Dim the lights, force me to jog around the rooms daily for 70 days plus. After three and a half days blast the house, I will be marehemu anyway!!!

Miracles do happen, it is happening in the desert region of Northern Chile.