The year has come to an end and frankly, I didn’t have deep introspective moments like meeting a dying man who gave me the secret to life. I would love to blame it on my ‘lack of financial freedom’ (read: broke as hell) but really it’s my meagerness in the adventurous spirit. That’s why I have one resolution for next year; talk to more random people. At least if not for myself, for the blog. For kina Mutuo, Wangeci, Norah, Antonette, Joy Moraa, Dan, Tajush and every other person that has supported this new space we’ve been on over the past few months.
With that, here’s a list of the few things that stood out for me this year.
– I moved to a new church that I felt would bring me closer to God. And it did. It’s those churches that the pastor knows Man’s Not Hot and Jordan Peele’s flick, Get Out. They don’t lock out world’s realities and pretend to be holier than thou like most antiquated Protestant churches do. Churches that preach the Good News and turn a blind eye to the rise of teen pregnancies because they believe it’s taboo to talk about such things in church. Offred, of Handmaid’s Tale calls them ‘pious little shits’. I was tired of their pretentious piousness. And hymns. And looting of fund-raised funds. So I moved.
If you’ve been in any uncomfortable situation this year and persevered through it, do yourself a favor and get out of it. Life is too short to sulk and get stuck over things you can change.
– I started a podcast with Django. You see, every time we would talk on phone, it would end up being a lengthy conversation about a show/movie, girls, a bit of philosophy or music. Sometimes it would be all of them. We then decided to broadcast the calls to the world because we believed the world needed to hear our opinions; the epitome of narcissism.
You should check it out. We are on YouTube as The Televisheni Podcast.
– I turned 21 and a bit of early mid-midlife crisis descended upon me that morning. In my mind I had always imagined 21 was far away. 21 was a fictional time that would never reach and if it ever did, I’d be rich or on the road to it. I also thought I’d spot a beard.
Both of things are yet to be achieved.
– I voted. Twice.
– One of my dogs turned 10.
On that day, I wondered if she knew she’d seen a decade. I wondered why at 10 she had the same energy as when she was two because someone told me that ten dog years are like forty of ours. But what bugged me most is if she resented me because in that decade, she had given birth only twice which means she’d only had sex twice. Maybe when I’m feeding them (they’re both female, by the way, Gladys and Toni) she sneers and whispers to her friend, “You wait, if he ever brings a girl around I’ll steal her shoe and hide it for his parents to see. Just you wait, Gladys.”
To which Toni will respond, “Come on. Let the boy have some fun. Don’t be a bitch.”
– Deception Point, Dan Brown and Half of a Yellow Sun, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
I had sworn to myself at the beginning of my year that I would read books to become a better writer. I asked a ferocious reader friend of mine for a book and he gave me the Dan Brown one. He said it’s good for a first timer, it’s really thrilling, to which I felt a bit of ire. That only thrilling science fiction would glue me to a book.
Turns out he was right because I read it for four days straight but dropped it after pausing every second to look up a difficult word. The bookmark is still at page 251 out of 527.
I moved on to Chim’s because she is African and I’d probably relate to her story better. And I did for the first week until she started introducing a new character on every page and my mind couldn’t differentiate those Nigerian names anymore. I called it quits with just a few chapters remaining and decided I would watch the rest of it on its movie remake.
I still have not watched the movie. Sue me.
– I joined twitter in 2013 but it’s only this year that I started using it and I have to say, it’s addictive as f-ck.
– I still don’t have a barber.
– For two weeks I worked as an intern at one of the courts in Nairobi. There, I realized that no one really cares for you and everybody’s just looking out for themselves. I also realized that I’m not cut out for an 8 to 5 job; I should really look for an escape route from it.
– I accepted that I don’t have a singing talent.
– In my late night YouTube talent search, I discovered a British singer called Michael Kiwanuka. He’ll be the lead vocalist in heaven.
– It’s been my year of great shows.
I started and completed Mad Men and was heartbroken and disoriented when it came to its placid end. I also watched Westworld and can quote lines from it off-head.
“I’m not crying for myself. I’m crying for you. They say that great beasts once roamed this world. Big as mountains. Yet all that’s left of them is bone and amber. Time undoes even the mightiest creatures. Just look what it’s done to you. One day, you will perish.”
Black Mirror would make me think about life for hours on end.
And Handmaid’s Tale brought out the feminism in me.
– I learnt that the most important thing in any relationship is communication. That and trust.
– I met one of my dad’s friend with an archaic mindset. All he did was criticize us, the millennials, for not knowing how to plant cassava and pluck tea leaves. His bitter argument was that, at my age, he could take take his father’s cows to graze, take them back home, milk them and proceed to distribute milk to neighbours and that if I did the same I would die of fatigue. “Nyinyi hakuna kitu mnajua siku hizi.”
He also revealed that he wasn’t not proud of his sons because although they’re making money, they don’t know anything about building construction (he’s a construction guy).
I wanted to point out that the world has changed. That we’ve not been brought up in farms, and that those who have, possess those skills he cherished. I wanted to tell him that talent pays and that masculinity doesn’t come from mixing cement and water. I wanted to tell him I could milk a cow, but I was too angry and sad to talk, so I nodded and smiled like the silly little millennial I am.
– I moved here, to a self-hosted site we can all call home. It’s a two-bedroom with a yard outside and a parking. Sometimes, we shelter some people who come over to read an article or two. Sometimes, they read and leave and never come back. On those days we wail and wallow and wonder what would have made them leave. Is it the brightly colored walls? If so, they should speak up.
Some of these guys have come and stayed even on those days we repainted the walls and the whole house reeked of fresh paint. Others have come, stayed, and left for reasons that elude me.
Like any home, we have had hyperactive visitors who’ve visited and commented and liked and shared posts and sometimes, gone ahead and invited others over and on those days we’ve recorded enormous stats and shot up our Alexa ranking. Others were silent, they’d read and retreat back to their rooms without a word.
My mom also started reading my blog. I was hesitant a bit at first but turns out, she loved it and supported it. Still does.
Anyway, let’s meet next year with bloated stomachs, hangovers, negative account balances and renewed hope.