People start trickling in. It’s mostly the people that organized this party. They come with cake and alcohol, lots of alcohol.
The dim crimson lights in the living room accentuate the debauchery that’s about to go down. Music pours softly from the speakers. It’s a night full of promise.
The early birds sit in silent whispers. For those that came alone, their phones are their company. They’re fully immersed in the small light from their screens. I suspect they are lamenting for arriving too early.
A couple is seated on a single-seater sofa next to the music system, the girl on the laps of the boy. They turn up the music and switch to more upbeat tunes. Occasionally, the girl leans in into the boy’s face and I’m not sure if they’re kissing or whispering sweet nothings into each other’s ears. Their taste in music is fantastic, though.
The room is fuller now. The music is louder and I have to really shout to talk to some friends who have just come in. They’ve come with more alcohol. And weed. I receive them and take them into the kitchen where the organizers of this shindig are. I am one of them, you see, that’s why arrived early. It’s a close friend’s 21st birthday and he wanted “the littest party of the year.”
I step outside and light one up. The music and happy screams of party girls is muffled behind me. A strong wind blows the burnt ash from the burning tip of my blunt.
We’ve just had a shot of ‘affordable’ whisky and my throat is on fire. I am in a group of estranged friends I studied with in primary school. Life happened and now, a decade later, we’re passing around a slim one desperately latching on to the limited tales of back in the day to avoid silent awkward moments. The high is starting to kick in and I drift from the conversation more than I want to.
Some girls, drunk off their wits are dancing, throwing their asses back and forth. Our attention drifts towards them. A drunk guy cheers them and we all join in the cheering. The girls respond by throwing what their mama gave them even harder. Another drunk one in a nice denim shirt stands and pours alcohol into the girls’ cups. They take it together in one big swig, the fuel to the fire.
The party is at its apogee. My mind isn’t mine anymore. The music is now a loud blaring ball of well-organized snares and kicks I can dance to. The living room is a dance floor. Most of us have joined the girls on the floor. The girls fascinate me, they haven’t rested since they started dancing.
More alcohol was added into our plastic cups at some point. I haven’t drunk mine, I’m not planning to. The trance I’m in has been solely caused by Maria Jane.
I spot the early couple come down from the stairs and realize I haven’t seen them for hours. They were probably reading the Bible.
Life starts to die down a little. Those who had bit too much to drink are passed out, strewn all over the floor and seats. A few people are smoking in the balcony and a few are left dancing, or trying to.
I am seated on a three-legged stool which I’ve wanted to seat on since I lay eyes on it. In my THC-induced stupor, the stool intrigued me because the last time I saw such a stool was in 2002 in my grandmother’s neighbor’s house. And it brought back childhood memories I wanted to relive. I really had to sit on it.
My friend, the birthday boy, promenades in from the balcony with his catch of the night and another girl beside them. He is drunk, I can see it from the sluggish smile spreading across his face as he approaches. I read through his smile and realize what he wants to do and sigh in disappointment. I had told him clearly to not try and hook me up with any girl; that I wanted to just chill and enjoy my company. But the alcohol had whispered to him otherwise.
Thing is, I hate being hooked up with girls in parties because: 1. if I want her, I’ll approach her; and 2. I hate the unnecessary pressure put on me to be the perfect conversationalist.
(Being hooked up is just terrible, especially if a male friend hooks you up. Your reputation is on the line. If the girl goes back and says you were boring, you’ll forever be the guy that doesn’t know how to talk to girls. If she just wants sex and you don’t and she goes back and says you didn’t make a move, you’ll forever be the guy that ‘was too afraid to make his move.’
If she reports anything that is not in the affirmative back to the boys, you’ll forever be the guy that knows zilch about girls and no guy wants to be that. Masculinity is too fragile.)
The girl is pretty and I am single and fooling around wouldn’t be a bad idea. Her name is Lynn. We all go back to the balcony and light another one up as I chitchat with new girl.
My date turns out to be painfully bland. Everything she says is bitter. She says things like “All guys do these days is cheat. You guys are trash. You’ve heard Beyoncé’s new Album, Lemonade? (We’re in 2016, by the way) Imagine even Jay Z cheated! On Queen Bey herself!!! Waaaah, guys are pigs.” She would go on and reference that album and celebrity marriages that are on the rocks and blame it on the husbands. I try to change the topic several times but she’s too deep in. I excuse myself and leave for my three legged stool in the living room.
The lights are out and a huge plasma TV lights up the room. At a dark corner, I see the silhouette of a girl seated on someone I assume is a boy. The girl is moving her waist rhythmically on his laps. I am slightly disgusted at what they’re doing.
The sun peeks through the horizon and its warm orange lights fill up the room. Most people are asleep and those that are awake prepare to leave. I wake birthday boy up and tell him we should leave. His paramour wakes up too beside him. We’re about to leave until he turns and says, “Ishia utafute Lynn tutoke naye.”